This quarter’s highlights collection focuses on three of our most widely read and cited articles this year. All three were featured in our special issue published in July on Transformational Change in Public Policy which was guest edited by our co-editors: Oscar Berglund, Claire Dunlop, Elizabeth Koebele and Chris Weible.
The authors highlight how significant time and effort has been spent seeking to understand policy change around the major societal issues we face. Yet their findings show that most change tends to be incremental. The consequent challenge they set out is whether or not public policy scholarship is up to the job of developing a coherent research programme to build knowledge and enable necessary, positive transformational change.
Ingrid Bego, Anne Charlott Callerstig, Elisa Chieregato, Isabelle Engeli, Ashley English, Lenita Freidenvall, Season Hoard, Sophie Jacquot, Andrea Jochmann-Doell, Veronika Lemeire, Iga Magda, Amy Mazur, Susan Milner, Lucie Newsome, Ania Plomien, Sophie Pochic, Jill Rubery, Olga Salido, Francesca Scala, Alexandra Scheele, Sydney Smith, Andrea Spehar, and Ines Wagner.
The politics and policy addressing gender inequalities in public and private life evident across supra-national, national, local or organisational contexts, especially but not exclusively in the Global North, are nothing short of remarkable. The range of issues various actors promote to advance equality include care, division of labour, education, employment, health, pay, political participation, poverty of income and time, reproductive rights, violence and more. All these interests are underpinned by gendered social norms and power. Yet, the existence and prominence of the wide assortment of gender politics and policies is as much a cause for celebration as it is for concern. It represents both an achievement of the feminist struggle to legitimise and institutionalise feminist goals of improving women’s lives, juxtaposed with the uneven, unfinished, or indeed unintended outcomes of these efforts. Does gender equality policy work in practice?
Professor Stephanie Paterson, one of the curators of our blog series spotlighting interpretive approaches to the study of policy and politics, explains our motivations behind the series and expands on the study of intersectionality from within critical policy studies…
Critical policy studies envelopes diverse approaches to the study of public policy, spanning institutionalist, materialist, and discursive approaches. A common feature, however, is their attention to power and commitment to social change.
Within this broad family of scholarship is intersectionality, a research paradigm originating within Black feminism that aims to expose and interrogate the intersectional or interlocking systems of oppression that shape lived experiences. Intersectionality has a long history that is rooted in Black feminist experience and thought (Bilge 2014; Hancock 2016). The paradigm began to take shape in the Combahee River Collective Statement (1977), which identified an “integrated analysis and practice based upon the fact that the major systems of oppression are interlocking. The synthesis of these oppressions creates the conditions of our lives.” From this, legal scholar Kimberlé Crenshaw (1989) articulated the concept of intersectionality with reference to the metaphor of a traffic intersection (see Hancock 2016 for an overview).
Are you planning a new policy or politics-focused course? Or maybe you’re updating your existing syllabi with some of the newest research on policy and politics? We’re here to help! In this blog, we provide recommendations for new Policy & Politics articles (as well as a few older favorites) that make excellent contributions to syllabi for a diversity of courses. We hope this saves you time and effort in mining our recent articles while also ensuring your course materials reflect the latest research from the frontiers of the discipline. Continue reading →
New Policy & Politics blog feature by Dr Tiffany Manuel.
In this video, Dr Tiffany Manuel (or Dr T as she prefers to be called) provides an excellent challenge to public policy researchers to think about the ways in which intersectionality needs to be woven into their research, that is not just driven by members of minority groups. In her talk, Dr T refers to her paper: How Does One Live the Good Life?: Assessing the State of Intersectionality in Public Policy: https://link.springer.com/chapter/10….
This video is part of a new feature on the Policy and Politics blog which aims to spotlight interpretive approaches to the study of policy and politics. This spotlight series hopes to encourage a greater range of scholarship. Continue reading →
Special issue blog series on Transformational Change through Public Policy.
Paul Cairney, Emily St.Denny, Sean Kippin, Heather Mitchell
Could policy theories help to understand and facilitate the pursuit of equity (or reduction of unfair inequalities)? We are producing a series of literature reviews to help answer that question, beginning with the study of equity policy and policymaking in health, education, and gender research, which has just been published in Policy & Politics. Continue reading →
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 →
Supra national and cross-national funding is increasingly becoming the norm in a context characterised by international consortia. Although bringing advantages in terms of scale, it raises issues about the relative salience of national location and gender and its implications for the funding of projects led by women, and for the composition of research teams. These themes are explored in a case study of a cross-national research programme, with a broadly Nordic funding structure, based in Sweden, and with a total budget of approximately EUR 3million. Two critical intervention points were identified: firstly those related to the relative power of the location based Steering Group and the gender balanced expert panels; and secondly the project leaders’ attitudes to diversity.
The Steering Group for the research programme was composed of representatives of nationally located funding organisations. At the inception of the Steering Group (when critical decisions were being made about structures, criteria and funding), only 20 per cent of the members were women. This breached the Swedish 40 per cent gender balance rule. Continue reading →
Nakray’s article raises the important issue of gender budgeting in the Indian context, and the role of feminist intervention in introducing this concept to India. Gender budgeting refers to not only a gendered analysis of the national (or state level) budgets, but at a broader and much more conceptual level, to locating gender relations within the economy as a whole. Nakray also raises Continue reading →