NEW SPECIAL ISSUE BLOG SERIES: Blog 4 – How community activism democratically transformed public policy in Brazil

Special issue blog series on Transformational Change through Public Policy.

Boullosa & PerezRosana Boullosa & Janaina Perez

People around the world seem eager for transformational change in our societies. But in which direction must these winds of change blow? This was perhaps the question that provoked us the most when we came across the call for articles for the themed issue on “Transformational Change through Public Policy”, proposed by the Policy & Politics editorial team. Our response has just been published in our article: The democratic transformation of public policy through community activism in Brazil.  Continue reading

NEW SPECIAL ISSUE BLOG SERIES: Blog 2 – Citizens do matter for policy change

Special issue blog series on Transformational Change through Public Policy.

Tosun Beland Papadopoulos

Jale Tosun, Daniel Béland and Yannis Papadopoulos

They come with names such as Save Bees and Farmers and End the Cage Age: European Citizens’ Initiatives (ECIs). This tool for giving European citizens an “opportunity to express their concerns in a very concrete way and to influence the European political and legislative agenda” has been viewed with skepticism by academics and the public. What impact could such a tool possibly have that at best can only formally induce the European Commission to issue a formal response? Continue reading

The Democratic Qualities of Regulatory Agencies

Libby MamanLibby Maman

Transparency, accountability, participation, and representation are concepts that are seen by many as positive and desirable attributes in the context of public organisations. Transparency means when a public organisation discloses information publicly, accountability means when it reports, answers, and justifies its actions to politicians or other state actors. Representation refers to the identity of the people working in the organisation, and participation means when public organisations consult with non-state actors in the rule-making process. Continue reading

Spotlighting interpretive approaches to public policy scholarship

New Policy & Politics blog feature by Julia Jordan-Zachery.

We are delighted to launch a new feature on the Policy and Politics blog which aims to spotlight interpretive approaches to the study of policy and politics. As a mainstream journal, although our aim is to incorporate pluralist perspectives, the reality is that have received and become known for some types of scholarship rather than others.

This spotlight series hopes to encourage a greater range of scholarship, and, to this end, our first feature showcases interpretive perspectives on policy problems.

In this piece, Julia Jordan-Zachery provides an excellent snapshot of the history and practice of intersectionality, illuminating some of its policy implications. Continue reading

New Frontiers & Cardinal Challenges for Scholars of Policy & Politics

P&P 2021 EditorsOscar Berglund, Claire A. Dunlop, and Christopher M. Weible

Policy & Politics serves as the ecumenical journal for the sects and strands found in the studies of social policy, public policy, policy processes and politics. It offers a home for scholars espousing a plurality of ontological, epistemological, and methodological orientations to share their science, learn and challenge each other, and enhance their knowledge. Continue reading

NEW SPECIAL ISSUE BLOG SERIES: Blog 1 – Public value as the game changer for co-creation of innovative solutions in the public sector

Special issue blog series on strategic management of the transition to public sector co-creation

updated special issue editors co creationJacob Torfing, Ewan Ferlie, Tina Jukić and Edoardo Ongaro

During the 1980s and early 1990s, we were consistently told that the public sector was ossified, incompetent and unimaginative, and squandered value produced by the hard-working and innovative private sector. Government was the problem, not the solution, and we should therefore have less state and more market. The neoliberal onslaught on the public sector had begun and public employees gradually developed an inferiority complex.

This nightmarish development was reversed by Mark Moore’s Creating Public Value (1995) who insisted that the public sector creates its own distinctive value. The public sector creates ‘public value’ defined as what has value for the public and public values. Public managers are not merely engaged in securing compliance with bureaucratic rules, but are entrepreneurs engaged in the exploration of new and better service and policy solutions. In this way, the public sector was redeemed and public managers could re-describe themselves as proud guardians of the public interest and producers of public value.  Continue reading

Policy & Politics Highlights collection on our NEW special issue just published on ‘Policy-making as designing’: free to access from 1 Feb – 30th April 2020.

Sarah BrownSarah Brown,
Journal Manager of Policy & Politics

In a slight departure from our usual format highlighting 3 of our most topical articles, this quarter’s highlights collection focuses on our new special issue just published on

Policy-making as designing: the added value of design thinking for public administration and public policy

In recent years, policy makers have shown increasing interest in harnessing design approaches to address policy problems. Design methods can offer innovative perspectives on persistent policy problems (e.g. climate change; ageing population; urbanization etc.). Given the enormous influx of design toolboxes, design approaches and design steps, the search is on for an ‘ultimate’ design approach for public sector problems. But there are different approaches that can be used, and which have different strengths. Continue reading

New call for themed issue proposals

BROWN_SarahSarah Brown,
Journal Manager of Policy & Politics

Policy & Politics has been publishing cutting-edge papers on public and social policy, and politics for over 40 years and is committed to continuing to advance understanding of the dynamics of policy- making and implementation.

The journal’s co-editors invite proposals for themed issues that address some of the most critical challenges currently facing policymakers, and in doing so make a significant contribution to the field. Reflecting the significance and salience of these challenges, this call provides scholars with a unique opportunity to showcase new ideas and set the research agenda, with themed issues enjoying fast turnaround and prompt publication to maximise their impact.

Continue reading

New research articles on democracy from Policy & Politics: free to download until 20 September

BROWN_SarahSarah Brown,
Journal Manager of Policy & Politics

In celebration of APSA’s Conference theme this year on democracy and its discontents, we bring you the latest and best of our research on that topic which is free to access until 20 September 2018. Just click on the hyperlinks below to go straight to the download page for each article.

To whet your appetite, here are three highlights from our range of articles on democracy, all of which aim to enhance our understanding of its importance.

Continue reading

New virtual collection on Public Participation: free to download until 20 September

BROWN_SarahSarah Brown,
Journal Manager of Policy & Politics

Read our new free virtual collection on Public Participation while you’re at ECPR 2018. All the articles are free to download from 20 August – 20 September 2018.

Whatever your view on public participation, our new virtual collection brings you our most recent research on the topic from a range of different perspectives, all of which aim to enhance our understanding of its importance. Opening the collection is one of our most innovative articles that seeks to address the gap between evidence and policy on how population health outcomes are determined by health discourses. To explore understandings of the cause of ill health in two deindustrialised areas of Scotland, interviews with participants produced vivid articulations of the links between politics, policies, deindustrialisation, damage to community fabric and impacts on health, hence the title: Working-class discourses of politics, policy and health: ‘I don’t smoke; I don’t drink. The only thing wrong with me is my health’.

Continue reading