Tag Archives: policy networks

How might lower-ranking officials have a greater impact on policy development than previously assumed?

andrew cornellAndrew Connell

How can small-territory, subnational governments make the most of their position? Subnational governments like the devolved governments in the UK combine some of the opportunities and limitations of the national and the local governments between which they sit. They have some ‘national government’-type responsibilities and resources, like legislative authority and funding powers, although those resources are limited by their subordinate status. On the other hand, because their territories are comparatively small (Scotland has just under 5.5 million people and 32 local authorities, Wales just over 3 million and 22) they might able to cultivate ‘local government’-type relationships with a comprehensive range of local groups.    Continue reading How might lower-ranking officials have a greater impact on policy development than previously assumed?

Policy networks – an idea whose time has come?

Kathryn Oliver
Kathryn Oliver

by  Dr Kathryn Oliver, Provost Fellow in Knowledge and Policy Networks at University College London.

With a general election just around the corner, everyone is on high alert for scandals. No one (well, ok – everyone except the politicians) wants to see another Bullingdon Club revelation, or a phone-hacking story. While there are a myriad ways for a politician to damage their credibility, it seems that old-boy’s networks are pretty widely understood to be Bad News.  Getting a job or any other benefit through a friend, a school-mate, a wife, or a man you met down the pub is – however usual – frowned on.

But human beings, like all primates, are social beings. This does not stop being the case just because people have got decision-making tasks. Interpersonal connections are known to influence everything from where policymakers find evidence, create agendas, develop policies – in fact, as our systematic review showed, every part of the policy process. Continue reading Policy networks – an idea whose time has come?