Definition of lobbying:

  • To conduct activities aimed at influencing public officials and especially members of a legislative body on legislation (Merriam-Webster online dictionary)
  • Any attempt by individuals or private interest groups to influence the decisions of government; in its original meaning it referred to efforts to influence the votes of legislators, generally in the lobby outside the legislative chamber. Lobbying in some form is inevitable in any political system. (Britannica online)

In Canada and the United States registered lobbying is a regulated activity at the federal level governed by legislation. There are also many other interest groups that communicate their views to government in an unofficial manner.

Government Information


United Kingdom

United States


The following are selected non-governmental resources for information about lobbying and lobbyists:


  • Hillwatch: Issues and Associations Directory: directory to the public policy content of associations, interest groups, NGOs, coalitions, and corporations. Web sites are arranged by sector and issue area with Canadian web sites first followed by a selection of International sites
  • Journalism.net Canadian lobbyists

United Kingdom

  • UK Public Affairs Council (UKPAC) is an independent organization, funded by its founding bodies, whose governance is of the highest standards. Although membership will initially be drawn from the APPC, the CIPR and the PRCA, it is intended to open the UKPAC to public affairs practitioners from all walks of life in the future. "For the first time the public can be confident that lobbyists from all walks of life, be they in corporations, charities, local authorities, law and accountancy firms, management or communications consultancies, think tanks and public affairs companies, will be able to be monitored by a single, independent organization." (website)

United States