Many democratic societies are experiencing a crisis of faith. Citizens are making clear their frustration with their supposedly representative governments, which instead seem driven by the interests of big business, powerful individuals and wealthy lobby groups.
What can we do about it? How do we fix democracy and get our voices heard?
The answer, argues Alberto Alemanno, is to become change-makers – citizen lobbyists. By using our skills and talents and mobilizing others, we can bring about social and political change. Whoever you are, you’ve got power, and this book will show you how to unleash it.
From successfully challenging Facebook’s use of private data to abolishing EU mobile phone roaming charges, Alberto highlights the stories of those who have lobbied for change, and shows how you can follow in their footsteps, whether you want to influence immigration policy, put pressure on big business or protect your local community.
« In these troubling times, we need effective citizen-lobbyists — not just likers, followers or even marchers — more than ever. No one has provided a more readable, persuasive and inspiring guide to how to be such a person than Alberto Alemanno. I have no hesitation in lobbying you to read this book ».
Bill Emmott – former editor in chief, The Economist, and chairman, The Wake Up Foundation
« A fresh and smart take on the challenges posed by the new forms of democratic engagement and participation ».
« Lobbying for Change unveils an inconvenient truth: it is not the interests of the few that are overrepresented but those of the many that are underrepresented in the policy process. This book provides a guide for citizens to act as an equalising force in today’s polarised society. An inspiring, timely and positive narrative of today’s state of democracy and an antidote to the trap of populism ».
Pascal Lamy – former Director of the World Trade Organisation and EU Commissioner for Trade
« Reviving civil society is a crucial task for today and tomorrow, and the strength of citizen lobbying is a vital indicator of civil society’s health. Alberto Alemanno has given us just what we need to guide us in this task – an intelligent, accessible and comprehensive handbook ».
Michael Edwards – editor of OpenDemocracy’s ‘Transformation’
« Lobbying for Change is the antidote to what ails us: moving would-be change makers beyond “clicktivism” and the occasional march to by a step-by-step guide to get active in shaping the future you want to see ».
Gillian Caldwell – CEO, Global Witness