Issue Networks

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  • An arrangement that can have a significant influence on the policy-making process. Sometimes referred to as “subgovernments,” issue networks are informal arrangements between policy actors with a particular interest and area of specialization in a policy issue. These issue areas, for example, may be national defense, the environment, energy, communi cations, or agriculture. In many instances, decision making about these policy issues tends to be highly specialized due to their complexity. Decisions are often made as a result of interactions between three key components: (1) congressional subcommittees, (2) an executive agency, and (3) an outside economic-interest group, such as farmers, the telecommunications industry, or the oil industry. Members of these components develop channels of communication and even specialized language or terminology to discuss the policy ...

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