Category Archives: Public Policy

The Impact of Austerity on Policy Capacity in Local Government

eckersley and tobin.pngPeter Eckersley and Paul Tobin

How can we identify the real impact of austerity on policy? Our recent article in Policy & Politics bridges the gaps between research on ‘cutback management’, ‘policy capacity’ and ‘policy dismantling’, finding that front-line and often short-term challenges are being prioritised over more hidden and medium-term threats. The results suggest a ticking time-bomb for discovering the real impacts of austerity – particularly in sectors such as the environment, where policymakers need to stay on top of scientific and societal developments in order to design effective approaches to problems. Continue reading The Impact of Austerity on Policy Capacity in Local Government

Policy & Politics at the International Conference on Public Policy #ICPP4, Montreal

Representatives from the Policy & Politics journal team are delighted to be attending the 4th International Conference on Public Policy #ICPP4 at Concordia University, Montreal. We are looking forward to celebrating with our authors, reviewers and board members over our recent impact factor rise to 2.028 which has taken us into the top 20 of all international journals in public administration and the top 50 for political science.

You can read the top cited articles contributing to our impact factor of 2.028 for FREE until 31 July!

Please look out for our representatives around the conference to discuss any relevant articles you are planning to publish. They are:  Continue reading Policy & Politics at the International Conference on Public Policy #ICPP4, Montreal

How not to conduct a consultation – and why asking the public is not always such a great idea

Batory & Svensson.pngAgnes Batory & Sara Svensson 

Involving people in policy-making is generally a good thing. Policy-makers themselves often pay at least lip-service to the importance of giving citizens a say. In the academic literature, participatory governance has been, with some exaggeration, almost universally hailed as a panacea to all ills in Western democracies. In particular, it is advocated as a way to remedy the alienation of voters from politicians who seem to be oblivious to the concerns of the common man and woman, with an ensuing decline in public trust in government. Representation by political parties is ridden with problems, so the argument goes, and in any case it is overly focused on the act of voting in elections – a one-off event once every few years which limits citizens’ ability to control the policy agenda. On the other hand, various forms of public participation are expected to educate citizens, help develop a civic culture, and boost the legitimacy of decision-making. Consequently, practices to ensure that citizens can provide direct input into policy-making are to be welcomed on both pragmatic and normative grounds.   Continue reading How not to conduct a consultation – and why asking the public is not always such a great idea

When austerity knocks, what happens to public participation?

alarcon

 

 

 

Pau Alarcón, Carol Galais, Joan Font and Graham Smith

The economic crisis has led to challenges across a whole host of policy areas. But what has been its effect on citizen participation in political decision making? 

When we think about the pros and cons of citizen involvement in political decision-makingquestions arise about competence and motivation. On the one hand, there is the question of the competence of citizens in making well-considered decisionsOn the other hand, will politicians implement or ignore citizens’ proposals?  Continue reading When austerity knocks, what happens to public participation?

Nudge Plus: How behaviour change policies can build on their success by recognizing their failings

Hill and stokerPeter John and Gerry Stoker

Policies that promote behaviour change are not so controversial as we move towards the third decade of the twenty first century. The question that matters now is how to ensure that behaviour change policies work and match an increasingly assertive democratic culture among citizens. Our solution is to build on past successes and to move towards something we label “nudge plus”. Continue reading Nudge Plus: How behaviour change policies can build on their success by recognizing their failings

Does privatisation reduce public deficits?

Beatriz and NoemiBeatriz Cuadrado-Ballesteros and Noemí Peña-Miguel

Privatisation may be defined as the sale of shares of state-owned enterprises (SOEs) to private investors, resulting in the transference of the property and the decision-making capability from the public to the private sector. Privatisations have always been controversial reforms, from the first ones developed by the Thatcher government in 1979, until now, when the Troika has pushed through privatisation programmes in EU member states that suffered financial problems during the last crisis.   Continue reading Does privatisation reduce public deficits?