Oxford Dictionaries (reference below) defines interest as “the advantage or benefit of a person or group” and also as “a stake or involvement in an undertaking.” It defines interests as “a group or organization having a common concern, especially in politics or business.”
In his 1975 article (reference below) Theodore Benditt noted that some writers take the concept of interests to be the central notion in politics, and he enumerated seven accounts of interests in political theory:
- feelings or attitudes
- attitudes shared by groups of people
- claims or demands
- changes that affect one advantageously or disadvantageously
- a means of satisfying wants
- what is conducive to happiness.
In 2014, Leslie Pal (reference below) provided a glossary of the scholarly concepts of interests in policymaking. See Pal’s Glossary of Conceptualizing Interests in Policymaking.
Atlas topic, subject, and course
Oxford Dictionaries, interest, at https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/interest, accessed 4 November 2017.
Theodore M. Benditt, 1975.The Concept of Interest in Political Theory, Political Theory, Vol. 3, No. 3 (Aug., 1975), pp. 245-258, JSTor link at http://www.jstor.org/stable/191108, accessed 5 August 2016.
Leslie Pal (2014), Beyond Policy Analysis – Public Issue Management in Turbulent Times, Fifth Edition, pages 229-31 and 259-60, Nelson Education, Toronto.
Page created by: Ian Clark, last modified 4 November 2017.
Image: TheFirstSix, Your Unique Desire, at http://www.thefirstsix.com/desire/, accessed 4 November 2017.