Theoretical Light in Empirical Darkness: Illuminating Strategic Concealment of Corporate Political Activity

Corporate political activity creates a “democratic deficit,” particularly when corporations lobby policymakers in secret. Nan Jia, Stanislav Markus, and Tim Werner conceptualize the concealment of corporate political activity, differentiating between organizational concealment (e.g. when corporations employ think-tanks to lobby for them) and informational concealment (e.g. when corporations manipulate public information to hide their lobbying). Using positive political theory, the authors model conditions under which concealment is most likely, and the types of policymakers most likely to be targeted by concealed corporate lobbying.