Foreign Agents Registration Act: a user’s guide

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10 Scopus citations


Foreign entities are among the most active interest groups that lobby policymakers in the US government. There is a long history of concern about foreign powers’ influence on public opinion and government policies in the USA, but little is known about the scope and magnitude of their influence. I introduce a new dataset that facilitates the measurement of lobbying activities by foreign entities: information extracted from lobbying reports submitted under the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA). The FARA requires that lobbyists representing foreign entities submit semi-annual reports detailing all their lobbying contacts. I highlight the difference in the disclosure requirements between the Lobbying Disclosure Act and the FARA and provide detailed guidance on how to extract information from reports submitted under the FARA. FARA data provide a unique opportunity to address unresolved questions in studies of interest groups as well as foreign entities’ lobbying activities in the USA.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)302-316
Number of pages15
JournalInterest Groups and Advocacy
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1 2020
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Sociology and Political Science


  • Foreign Agents Registration Act
  • Foreign Lobbying
  • LDA
  • Lobbying


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