The relationship between politics and business is obviously a key feature of policy-making in capitalist democracies, and business associations are an important element of that relationship. A consensus has now emerged that organised business is remarkably weak in East-Central Europe. This article proposes a theoretical synthesis with which to explain that weakness. It shows how the strength of trade unions, varieties of capitalism and interest diversity are specifications of Olson���s logic of collective action, specifications without which the logic itself is too general to explain concrete outcomes. Detailed evidence in favour of the theory is provided from the Polish case. It
is argued that the analysis should also apply to other post-communist countries.