Title page for ETD etd-01122010-020218

Type of Document Master's Thesis
Author Lang, Helmut
URN etd-01122010-020218
Title Agents of fundamental policy change? :political strategies of the environmental, sustainable agriculture, and family farm groups in the 1990 farm bill
Degree Master of Science
Department Political Science
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Walcott, Charles E. Committee Chair
Batie, Sandra S. Committee Member
Luke, Timothy W. Committee Member
  • Agricultural conservation
Date of Defense 1992-09-16
Availability restricted

This study investigates the strategies and policy impacts of the environmental, family farm, and sustainable agriculture groups in the 1990 farm bill legislation. In spite of "genuine" interest in a fundamental policy reform, and in spite of a common agenda, the three different types of interest groups mostly opted for parochial, incremental policy demands.

This self-restrictive interest group behavior and the groups' limited impacts on policy outcomes is explained by organizational limitations and self-interests of the challenging interest groups as well as by institutional protection of the American political system. This protection specifically applies to the agricultural domain with its distinctive farm bill construction. New and potentially challenging farm bill interest groups have not been agents for fundamental policy change, as the policy status quo (old policies as well as governmental inaction) is structurally protected.

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