This research project is concerned with the implications of EU enlargement for the Polish interest representation system. Specifically, the focus is on the development of sectoral business associations. The first years after Polandâs accession to the European Union are particularly remarkable in that regard, because most cross-sectoral confederations are already voicing the need to delegate some of their policy input effort to the sectoral associations to be able to handle the ample information inflow from Brussels. At the same time, it is broadly recognized that the sectoral movement in Poland is still very much underdeveloped and remains virtually embryonic in SME sector.
A combination of quantitative and qualitative research tools will be used in this investigation. The dynamics of change in membership of sectoral associations will be assessed quantitatively (database), as will the considerations of a broad sample of enterprises (large and SMEs) as to why they choose to join sectoral associations or disregard such membership (questionnaires). If/how sectoral associations seek to enhance their membership and involvement in policy-making will be addressed in qualitative research (in-depth interviews).