Poster Paper: Regulation of interest group advocacy in Brazil: legal framework and new policy

Friday, November 3, 2017
Regency Ballroom (Hyatt Regency Chicago)

*Names in bold indicate Presenter

Diaulas Costa Ribeiro1,2, Néfi Cordeiro1,3 and Denis Alves Guimaraes1,4, (1)The Catholic University of Brasilia, (2)State Court of Appeals of the Federal District and Territories, (3)Superior Court of Justice, (4)AGPR

Brazil is a G20 economy ranked 79/176 in the Corruption Perceptions Index 2016 (Score 40/100). In 2016, the so called Car Wash corruption scandal – which was based at the state controlled oil company Petrobras – was included by Transparency International amongst the nine biggest corruption cases worldwide through a survey carried out in late 2015. Transparency International also recognizes the “need to highlight the less visible side of grand corruption”, such as certain laws that do not promote transparency or facilitate corrupt deals.

In this sense, the interdisciplinary Master of Laws Program of The Catholic University of Brasilia is conducting a research on regulation of interest group advocacy in Brazil, given, on the one hand, the groups’ legitimacy to attempt to influence the formulation of public policies, and; on the other hand, the risks involved in such private/public sectors interaction. These risks are not only corruption, but also uneven interest group representation before a bureaucracy with limited resources to process the information shared by the private sector and convert all the inputs in a possible best policy decision.

The research is compiling i) the existing indirect regulation of interest group advocacy and ii) the current proposals of direct regulation under discussion at the Legislative Branch, and making a qualitative comparison between i) existing and ii) possible regulation.

For the purpose of presenting this work at APPAM, the focus would be more on the quality of data available for assessing interest group influence on the policy process, rather than on measurement – given the current difficulties affecting not only Brazil, but also countries like Germany and France (see report: TRANSPARENCY INTERNATIONAL / WORLD WIDE WEB FOUNDATION. Connecting the Dots: Building the Case for Open Data to Fight Corruption, 23 February 2017). In respect to Brazil, the current challenges are adequately enforcing the right to information (RTI) law, and; if a direct regulation of interest group advocacy is approved by the Legislative Branch, to assess how its requirements will interact with the RTI law.