May 2015 saw another election victory for the Conservative party in a UK general election, as they formed a majority government at Westminster. Many are concerned about the social equity issues arising from some of the policy decisions already announced, not least the £12 billion in welfare cuts announced in the July budget. However, as we suggest in our paper past research shows we should not be surprised about the direction policy is taking – Julian LeGrand’s work analysing the spending priorities implicit in the cuts meted out by the Thatcher government between 1979 and 1983 showed not only that they were focused on welfare, but that they protected “middle class” services such as education and health. These are also the services that Conservative voters were most likely to use. Continue reading
The Policy & Politics Blog features debates from recent issues . An extract is below, then please click on the link at the end to download the full article. Policy & Politics is the leading journal in the field of public policy with an enviable reputation for publishing peer-reviewed papers of the highest quality .
DEBATE: A Big Society needs an active state
The state has become unfashionable again in the United Kingdom (UK). Following a brief flirtation with it as an agent for good under New Labour, the current financial crisis and the ideological preferences of the coalition government mean that the state is now regarded at best as an outmoded way of meeting needs, and at worst a block to citizen action, business entrepreneurship and efficient service delivery… Read the rest of this article by downloading the pdf (free).