This article discusses the dynamics of nongovernmental domestic actors in the foreign economic policy decision-making process. The article addresses four questions: (1) Do nongovernmental actors influence foreign economic policy decisions? (2) What determines their preferences for given policies? (3) What institutional characteristics in the decision-making process offer greater or lesser permeability to demands by domestic actors? (4) Which institutional variables affect the interaction between societal and governmental interests? The author discusses the answers to these questions provided by the literature. The argument is that the existing theoretical perspectives offer only partial explanations to the dynamics at hand and need to be better integrated in order to adequately understand them.
foreign economic policy; interest groups; institutions