Disclaimer. Don't rely on these old notes in lieu of reading the literature, but they can jog your memory. As a grad student long ago, my peers and I collaborated to write and exchange summaries of political science research. I posted them to a wiki-style website. "Wikisum" is now dead but archived here. I cannot vouch for these notes' accuracy, nor can I even say who wrote them. If you have more recent summaries to add to this collection, send them my way I guess. Sorry for the ads; they cover the costs of keeping this online.
Walker. 1983. The origins and maintenance of interest groups in America. APSR (1983):390-406.
Walker claims to prove a great deal about the origin and maintenance of interest groups, though he in fact demonstrates almost nothing. Main claim: Interest groups arise and persist only according to their ability to secure funds from outside their membership. "The key to success in these efforts usually is the ability of group organizers to secure both start-up funds and reliable sources of continuing financial support from patrons of political action" (403).
A survey of 913 interest groups. It's not clear exactly what groups he's surveying. He gives a long list of types of groups that he excludes (p391-2), and it's hard to think of what might be left.
Rather than use a non-theoretical typology (e.g. grouping interest groups according to their policy area), he groups them based on two criteria. First, is it an occupational/industry group, or is its membership open to anyone ("citizen groups" based on purposive goals)? Second, if it is an occupational group, is it a for-profit lobby, non-profit, or mixed?
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