state capture

In February 2022 the Australian Democracy Network published ‘Confronting State Capture,’ a detailed analysis of what state capture is, how it operates in Australia, and what we can do about it. I’m proud to be one of the contributors.

Read the full report here.

According to the World Bank, “State capture is the exercise of power by private actors — through control over resources, threat of violence, or other forms of influence — to shape policies or implementation in service of their narrow interests.”

By its nature, state capture is usually hidden, often in plain sight. The scandals that hit the news are the tip of the iceberg. The report breaks done six modes of influence used in state capture:

  • Financial interventions in politics
  • Lobbying and personal influence
  • Revolving doors and personnel exchange
  • Institutional repurposing
  • Research and policymaking
  • Public influence campaigns

The report also explores two case studies in detail – fossil fuel industries and the arms industry, and then sets out four recommendations on how to confront state capture.


‘The Activist’, they called it. Recruit half a dozen social justice campaigners and save the planet–type people and make them compete against each other in a reality TV format for US media conglomerate CBS.

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