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date: 17 September 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This article explores the changing nature of urban interest group politics and contrasts trends and developments at the urban level with what is known about lobbies in Washington. It also examines the barriers to entry for interest group politics and finds strikingly low barriers at the local level. Analysis then turns to the politics of location, maintaining that the traditional image of downtown business groups dominating local politics while neighbourhoods are politically feeble is outdated and misleading. The revival of citizen participation programs in urban politics is addressed. It is shown that it presents neighbourhoods leverage that they would not otherwise possess. The possible commonalities in future research on national and local interest groups are reviewed. The interest group subfield will reorient itself, with research crossing boundaries set by tradition.

Keywords: urban interest group, Washington, urban politics, business groups, citizen participation programs

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