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Role of Interest Groups

What is an Interest Group? 

An interest group (also often called a pressure group) is an organisation of individuals, or sometimes a grouping of organisations, who share a common interest either in their own economic advancement or in a cause that they believe in.  

It seeks to protect and promote that interest by influencing government, often by direct contact, known as lobbying, or by creating publicity about their aims and seeking to gain public support. 

It may exist only at the local level, for example, a residents’ group, at a national level, often with local branches, such as the National Union of Farmers, or at a transnational level, such as Greenpeace. 

Very large firms such as Toyota or GlaxoSmithKline also effectively act as pressure groups and do not necessarily need to be part of an organisation.

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