Confronting state capture
How corporations have eroded our democracy, and what we can do about it
State capture, as defined by the World Bank:
“State capture is the exercise of power by private actors — through control over resources, threat of violence, or other forms of influence — to shape policies or implementation in service of their narrow interests.”
The report explains how state capture works and also includes a detailed case study on the fossil fuels industry.
It’s time to confront state capture
State capture occurs when powerful or wealthy interests interfere with decision-making and assume a degree of control over the democratic rule-making process itself.
The World Bank noticed that it can occur in wealthy democracies through control over resources, the threat of violence, or other forms of influence.
By its nature, state capture is usually hidden, often in plain sight. The scandals that hit the news are the tip of the iceberg. The report breaks down six modes of influence used in state capture:
Financial interventions in politics
Lobbying and personal influence
Revolving doors and personnel exchange
Research and policymaking
Public influence campaigns
The report explores two case studies in detail and sets out four recommendations on how to confront state capture.
Listen: Undue influence: how industry is undermining our democracy, Radio National, Late Night Live, 16.2.22
Enjoy: All the cool kids are talking about State Capture – it’s everywhere and you don’t want it, First Dog on the Moon cartoon, Guardian Australia, 11.3.22