First published in 1991, "Politics UK" is now in its sixth edition and continues to provide the most comprehensive, elegant and up to date coverage of all aspects of the British political system. The book presents a detailed examination of the core elements of the British political scene divided into six classic parts: context, defining the political world, the representative process, the legislative process, the executive process and the policy process. The sixth edition has been thoroughly updated and revised and is now in full colour throughout.
Table of Contents
CONTENTS PART 1 CONTEXT 1 Introduction: explaining politics 2 Historical context globalization 3 The social and economic contexts PART 2 DEFINING THE POLITICAL WORLD 4 Ideology and the liberal tradition 5 Political ideas: key concepts 6 Political ideas: the major parties 7 Political ideas: themes and fringes And another thing ... Who's steering this ship? Power in British politics PART 3 THE REPRESENTATIVE PROCESS 8 Elections 9 Voting behaviour 10 The mass media and political communication 11 Pressure groups 12 Political parties 13 Pathways into politics 14 Devolution And another thing ... Voting with our feet: The turn-out problem' in Britain PART 4 THE LEGISLATIVE PROCESS Introduction to Part 4 15 The changing constitution 16 The crown 17 The House of Commons 18 The House of Lords And another thing ... The Premier League: Ranking Tony Blair PART 5 THE EXECUTIVE PROCESS 19 The Cabinet and Prime Minister 20 Ministers, departments and civil servants 21 Civil service management and policy 22 Local government 23 The Judiciary And another thing ... The marriage of true minds? The Blair/Brown relationship PART 6 THE POLICY PROCESS 24 The policy making process 25 The politics of law and order 26 Social policy 27 Economic policy 28 British foreign and defence policy under the Blair government 29 Environmental policy 30 Northern Ireland 31 Britainand European integration 32 Labour in government: An assessment And another thing ... Waging wars: foreign policy and terrorism Glossary Index
Detailed Contents EditorsGuided tourPrefaceAcknowledgements PART 1 CONTEXT 1 Introduction: explaining politics Definitions and decision making The critical political questions Politics, government and the state Approaching the study of politics Themes and issues in British politics 2 Historical context - globalization What is globalisation? Why is it important? Britainin the world Sensitivity to globalisation 3 The social and economic contexts Britainin a global setting Urban problems and the city Work and unemployment Wealth, poverty and the social structure Multi-ethnic and multi-cultural Britain The economic structure: the public and the private Economic structure: the balance of sectors The structure of ownership British society and the wider world And another thing. . . Civil societies: social capital in Britain PART 2 DEFINING THE POLITICAL WORLD 4 Ideology and the liberal tradition What is ideology? The liberal tradition Fukuyamaand the end of history 5 Political ideas: key concepts What is a concept? Human nature Nationalism Class Freedom Equality Social justice Rights The market Planning 6 Political ideas: the major parties The Conservative Party Impact of Thatcherism The Labour Policy and socialism The Liberal Democrats 7 Political ideas: themes and fringes Gender issues The English/British sense of identity Green thinking The political fringe And another thing . . . Who's steering this ship? Power in British politics PART 3 THE REPRESENTATIVE PROCESS8 Elections Why elections? What are elections? Who votes? Constituency boundaries The electoral system The electoral process 9 Voting behaviour Explanations of voting behaviour Party support The 2001 general election The 2005 election The liberal democrat dilemma 10 The mass media and political communication Tabloids Broadcasting Media organizations and the political process The political impact of the media: the process The mass media and the theory of pluralist democracy The media and politics: future developments 11 Pressure groups Definitions Civil society and groups Pressure groups and government Theoretical perspectives From the politics of production to the politics of consumption 12 Political parties The role of political parties The Conservative party The Labour party Other parties Problems for parties 13 Pathways into politics Democracy and participation Democracy and non-participation Democracy and political recruitment Changing patterns of participation and recruitment 14 Devolution Core-Periphery theory Nationalism Labour and devolution Ireland Scotland Wales Devolution and the EU Englandand its regions Citizenship Devolution has changed the nature of British government And another thing . . . Voting with our feet: The turn-out ' problem' in Britain PART 4 THE LEGISLATIVE PROCESS Introduction to Part 4 15 The changing constitution The constitution Challenges to the traditional constitution Parties and the constitution The continuing debate 16 The crown Development of the monarchy Political significance of the crown The contemporary role of the monarchy Criticisms of the monarchy Proposals for change 17 The House of Commons Origins of Parliament The development of Parliament The House of Commons Scrutiny and influence Members under pressure The House under pressure Pressure for change Explaining Parliamentary power 18 The House of Lords History Membership and attendance Composition Activity Procedures Functions Scrutiny and influence Reform: stage one Reform: stage two The future of the second chamber? And another thing . . . The Premier League: Ranking Tony Blair PART 5 THE EXECUTIVE PROCESS 19 The Cabinet and Prime Minister The Prime Minister's roles The Prime Minister Cabinet Ministers 20 Ministers, departments and civil servants Departments Ministerial power Explaining ministerial power 21 Civil service management and policy Inside the civil service The public-private mix The delivery agenda 22 Local government British local government: from confusion to cohesion Inter-governmental relations: general competence or general dogsbody? Local government and local politics Creating a new form and approach to local politics Local government: a changing policy environment The citizenry: consultation and participation The regional agenda Local government and the European Union 23 The Judiciary A subordinate branch? An autonomous branch? The courts Judicial activism Enforcing EU law Enforcing the ECHR The impact of devolution Demands for change And another thing . . . The marriage of true minds? The Blair/Brown relationship PART 6 THE POLICY PROCESS 24 The policy making process How policy is made Models of policy making The policy cycle Case studies in policy making 25 The politics of law and order Law, order and political ideas The current extent of the problem Responses to crime The security services and related Home Office matters 26 Social policy The nature of social policy Why is the welfare state so important? Issues in welfare policy New Labour and the welfare state: from welfare state to work state? 27 Economic policy The nature of economic policy The machinery of economic policy Three themes in economic policy 28 British foreign and defence policy under the Blair government Background Ethical foreign policy The Strategic Defence Review Relations with the United States 29 Environmental policy The impact of Europeon British environmental policy From environmental policy to sustainable development The sustainable development agenda Devolution and environmental policy Central government and its agencies The rural conservation agencies Local government and environmental policy Pressure groups and government: the case of road transport Climate change and energy policy 30 Northern Ireland The development of Northern Ireland Paramilitary violence Explanations of the problem The political parties: the rise of the Democratic Unionist Party and Sinn Fein The search for political agreement The peace process 31 Britainand European integration Britainand Europeintegration: the context The EU's institutions and decision making The key policy areas Britainand the EU in the new millennium: continuing The UK, the EU and multi-level government 32 Labour in government: An assessment Blair and abroad Public services The Conservative opposition And another thing . . . Waging wars: foreign policy and terrorism GlossaryIndex