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Governments do not provide value for money. In fact, they spend taxpayers' money wastefully and even stupidly. The UK government spends an unfathomable GBP660 billion every year - that's GBP11,000 per every person in the country, plus a further GBP13,000 each of accumulated debt. Although public spending is being curtailed, total government spending is still rising - it is only the rate of growth that is being slowed by cuts. In Conundrum, Daily Telegraph Senior Political Correspondent Christopher Hope and Richard Bacon MP, who sits on the Public Accounts Committee that examines the accounts of government departments, look at a wide variety of cases where hundreds of millions and even billions of pounds of taxpayers' money were spent on projects and programmes that went wrong, and where individual members of the public suffered as a result. Throughout the book the authors look at examples of failure which illustrate the problems facing governments trying to make things happen. They look at why massive and expensive public computer systems tend to fail universally; how ministers are expected to set the direction for government but are barely around long enough to warm their seats; why the civil servants who are supposed to deliver public policy are hamstrung by risk-averse behaviour; and finally, Conundrum examines what can be done to improve things, and asks why none of the many attempts to reform the system over the last fifty years have worked.
With almost four decades of experience in the Civil Service, Robin Butler, Lord Butler of Brockwell, has been privy to a succession of parliamentary shake-ups and international policy crises.During his remarkable career, Butler served as Private Secretary to Edward Heath, Harold Wilson and Margaret Thatcher and as Cabinet Secretary under Thatcher, John Major and Tony Blair. He has been in some risky situations, such as his proximity, with Margaret Thatcher, to the 1984 IRA bombing in Brighton and, with John Major, to the mortar attack on Downing Street in February 1991. To the public, however, he is perhaps best known for his role as the chairman of the 2004 inquiry into Iraq's weapons of mass destruction.In this illuminating political biography, Michael Jago weaves a narrative around Robin Butler's distinguished career as a civil servant, measured against the changing background of British politics over the past forty years. Butler successfully preserved the traditions of the Civil Service - above all, political impartiality - while implementing far-reaching changes and more mobility between the service and the outside world. Jago's study of that pivotal role, undertaken while the paint is still fresh, makes this biography required reading for anyone interested in the dynamics at the heart of power.
At a time when Congressional investigations have taken on added importance and urgency in American politics, this book offers readers a rare, insider's portrait of the world of US Congressional oversight. It examines specific oversight investigations into multiple financial and offshore tax scandals over fifteen years, from 1999 to 2014, when Senator Levin served in a leadership role on the US Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations (PSI), the Senate's premier investigative body. Despite mounting levels of partisanship, dysfunction, and cynicism swirling through Congress during those years, this book describes how Congressional oversight investigations can be a powerful tool for uncovering facts, building bipartisan consensus, and fostering change, offering detailed case histories as proof. Grounded in fact, and written as only an insider could tell it, this book will be of interest to financial and tax practitioners, policymakers, academics, students, and the general public.
The budget has been among the most pressing topics facing Brussels throughout the history of the EU. Features and Challenges of the EU Budget proposes a timely analysis of the most pertinent issues surrounding the EU budget with a multidisciplinary approach that includes historical, political, legal and economic interpretations. This thought provoking book considers the history of the EU budget and the European integration process, offering insight into the broader political implications of the budget for both Member State governments and for their citizens. Features and Challenges of the EU Budget also explores the legal and economic repercussions of the EU budget, examines the framework that controls it, and interrogates the budget's effects on European growth and competitiveness alongside its significance to the structural balances of Member States. At a time of uncertainty for the EU, this book provides a critical investigation of how political factors will affect the future of the EU budget. Featuring the unique contributions of academics from a range of disciplinary backgrounds, this insightful work will be of great interest to scholars and students investigating the politics, structure and economics of the EU. This book will also be useful to institutions offering courses or programmes concerning the EU and its budget.
In 2016, the new sustainable development goals (SDGs) were signed into being, marking a new phase of global development thinking focused on ecologically, socially and fiscally sustainable human settlements. Few countries offer a better testing ground for their attainment than post-apartheid South Africa. Since the coming to power of the African National Congress, the country has undergone a policy-making revolution, driven by an urgent need to improve access to services for the country's black majority. More than 20 years on from the fall of apartheid, Building a Capable State asks what lessons can be learned from the South African experience. This comprehensive examination of urban service delivery in the global South assesses whether the South African government has succeeded in improving service delivery, focusing on the vital sectors of water and sanitation, energy, roads and public transport. Emphasising the often-overlooked role of local government institutions, the book demonstrates that effective service delivery can have a profound effect on the social structure of emerging economies, and must form an integral part of any future development strategy.
An all-star cast of scholars and politicians from Europe and America propose and debate the creation of a new European parliament with substantial budgetary and legislative power to solve the crisis of governance in the Eurozone and promote social and fiscal justice and public investment. The European Union is struggling. The rise of Euroskeptic parties in member states, economic distress in the south, the migrant crisis, and Brexit top the news. But deeper structural problems may be a greater long-term peril. Not least is the economic management of the Eurozone, the nineteen countries that use the Euro. How can this be accomplished in a way generally acceptable to members, given a political system whose structures are routinely decried for a lack of democratic accountability? How can the EU promote fiscal and social justice while initiating the long-term public investments that Europe needs to overcome stagnation? These are the problems a distinguished group of European and American scholars set out to solve in this short but valuable book. Among many longstanding grievances is the charge that Eurozone policies serve large and wealthy countries at the expense of poorer nations. It is also unclear who decides economic policy, how the interests of diverse member states are balanced, and to whom the decision-makers are accountable. The four lead authors-Stephanie Hennette, Thomas Piketty, Guillaume Sacriste, and Antoine Vauchez-describe these and other problems, and respond with a draft treaty establishing a parliament for economic policy, its members drawn from national parliaments. We then hear from invited critics, who express support, objections, or alternative ideas. How to Democratize Europe offers a chance to observe how major thinkers view some of the Continent's most pressing issues and attempt to connect democratic reform with concrete changes in economic and social policies.
The Ultimate EU Test Book Administrators 2019 is relevant for all EPSO AD5-AD 9, Linguist, and AD Specialist exams and also CAST competitions. It is packed with strategies, tips, advice and comprehensive practice exercises. The book opens with 2 chapters explaining the EPSO process, looking at issues such as chances of succeeding in different competitions, typical timelines, scoring, and key mistakes to avoid. There are then chapters on the skills and shortcuts needed in tackling verbal, numerical and abstract reasoning questions, backed up by comprehensive practice exercises designed to simulate AD-level competitions. Multiple choice questions are accompanied by detailed answer explanations to enable you to understand your mistakes and improve your speed and accuracy. Finally situational judgement tests are explained, with practice scenarios. The focus is on the so-called pre-selection tests as this is where the great majority of candidates fail. A separate edition, The Ultimate EU Test Book Assessment Centre 2019, is available for those who make it to the Assessment Centre phase, where the exercises used are very different.
In The Fourth Revolution, John Micklethwait and Adrian Wooldridge ask: what is the state actually for? Their remarkable book describes the three great revolutions in its history, and the fourth which is happening now In most of the states of the West, disillusion with government has become endemic. Gridlock in America; anger in much of Europe; cynicism in Britain; decreasing legitimacy everywhere. Most of us are resigned to the fact that nothing is ever going to change. But as John Micklethwait and Adrian Wooldridge show us in this galvanizing book, this is a seriously limited view of things. In response to earlier crises in government, there have been three great revolutions, which have brought about in turn the nation-state, the liberal state and the welfare state. In each, Europe and America have set the example. We are now, they argue, in the midst of a fourth revolution in the history of the nation-state, but this time the Western way is in danger of being left behind. The Fourth Revolution brings the crisis into full view and points towards our future. The authors have enjoyed extraordinary access to influential figures and forces the world over, and the book is a global tour of the innovators. The front lines are in Chinese-oriented Asia, where experiments in state-directed capitalism and authoritarian modernization have ushered in an astonishing period of development. Other emerging nations are producing striking new ideas, from Brazil's conditional cash-transfer welfare system to India's application of mass-production techniques in hospitals. These governments have not by any means got everything right, but they have embraced the spirit of active reform and reinvention which in the past has provided so much of the West's comparative advantage. The race is not just one of efficiency, but one to see which political values will triumph in the twenty-first century: the liberal values of democracy and freedom or the authoritarian values of command and control. The centre of gravity is shifting quickly, and the stakes could not be higher.
This book provides a systematic and comprehensive introduction to the philosophical foundations of the study and practice of public administration. Philosophy and Public Administration provides the reader with an agile introduction to the main philosophical streams from classical metaphysics to phenomenology, empiricism to rationalism and pragmatism to personalism, ultimately revealing their significance for public governance and management. Ontological and epistemological issues are brought to the fore in discussing contemporary conceptions of the nature of public administration. The book explores connections between basic ontological stances and public governance, shedding light on the nature of public administration by revisiting fundamental philosophical issues. The quest for justification and legitimacy of public governance is examined, and 'Common Good', 'Social contract' and 'Personalism' arguments vetted. The works of major thinkers like Thomas More and Niccolo Machiavelli are revisited, drawing implications for contemporary public administration. This is the only book to provide a comprehensive examination of how philosophical thought matters for understanding public administration. It is a must-read for scholars and practitioners alike reflecting on or practising the management of public services.
"Work and the Welfare State" places street-level organizations at the analytic center of welfare-state politics, policy, and management. This volume offers a critical examination of efforts to change the welfare state to a workfare state by looking at on-the-ground issues in six countries: the US, UK, Australia, Denmark, Germany, and the Netherlands. An international group of scholars contribute organizational studies that shed new light on old debates about policies of workfare and activation. Peeling back the political rhetoric and technical policy jargon, these studies investigate what really goes on in the name of workfare and activation policies and what that means for the poor, unemployed, and marginalized populations subject to these policies. By adopting a street-level approach to welfare state research, Work and the Welfare State reveals the critical, yet largely hidden, role of governance and management reforms in the evolution of the global workfare project. It shows how these reforms have altered organizational arrangements and practices to emphasize workfare's harsher regulatory features and undermine its potentially enabling ones. As a major contribution to expanding the conceptualization of how organizations matter to policy and political transformation, this book will be of special interest to all public management and public policy scholars and students.
Introducing the scope and scale of government, competing approaches to the study of management in the public sector, different forms of service delivery and the major topics in the subject such as strategic management, leadership and performance management, this book continues to be a key point of reference for lecturers and students in the field.
This forward-thinking Handbook draws on the expertise of established and emerging scholars to provide a comprehensive review of the current state and future direction of theory and practice in US public administration. Chapters offer a cross-disciplinary, holistic review of the field, pulling together leaders from subfields such as public administration, public and nonprofit management, finance, human resource management, networks, nonprofits, policy, and politics. Chapter authors conclude that the field is intellectually rich and highly nuanced, but also identify numerous opportunities for growth and expansion in the coming years. The Handbook charts an agenda for future research in the field. The Handbook of American Public Administration is geared toward academics, researchers, and advanced graduate students. As an authoritative text on the history and state of US public administration, it proves equally suitable for national and international audiences. Practitioners who may be looking for background information or state-of-the-art knowledge about practice will also benefit from this Handbook.
The Ultimate EU Test Book Assessment Centre 2019 has been written by leading experts in EPSO competitions to help candidates succeed at the Assessment Centre. Full of highly practical advice, it shows how the Assessment Centre really works and what candidates need to do to maximise their chances of success. It is packed with hands-on examples, tips and guidance on winning strategies and the common mistakes that candidates make. How the EPSO Assessment Centre works, including a typical day The EPSO competencies and how they are measured The exercises used to test the competencies, the keys to success and the pitfalls to avoid Full sample exercises with scoring keys Recruitment & the Competency Passport Now including the EU Motivation Interview Relevant for all Administrator, Assistant, Linguist and Specialist competitions
What wasn't learned from a U.S. intervention that succeeded. In July 1958, U.S. Marines stormed the beach in Beirut, Lebanon, ready for combat. They were greeted by vendors and sunbathers. Fortunately, the rest of their mission helping to end Lebanon's first civil war went nearly as smoothly and successfully, thanks in large part to the skillful work of American diplomats who helped arrange a compromise solution. Future American interventions in the region would not work out quite as well. Bruce Riedel's new book tells the now-forgotten story (forgotten, that is, in the United States) of the first U.S. combat operation in the Middle East. President Eisenhower sent the Marines in the wake of a bloody coup in Iraq, a seismic event that altered politics not only of that country but eventually of the entire region. Eisenhower feared that the coup, along with other conspiracies and events that seemed mysterious back in Washington, threatened American interests in the Middle East. His action, and those of others, were driven in large part by a cast of fascinating characters whose espionage and covert actions could be grist for a movie. Although Eisenhower's intervention in Lebanon was unique, certainly in its relatively benign outcome, it does hold important lessons for today's policymakers as they seek to deal with the always unexpected challenges in the Middle East. Veteran analyst Bruce Reidel describes the scene as it emerged six decades ago, and he suggests that some of the lessons learned then are still valid today. A key lesson? Not to rush to judgment when surprised by the unexpected. And don't assume the worst.
This book provides theories, experiences, reflections and future directions for social scientists who wish to engage with policy-oriented research in, and for, cities and regions. The `policy learning' perspective is comprehensively discussed, focusing on actors promoting `policy knowledge' and interaction among different stakeholders. Theoretical frameworks and practical experiences of policy-orientated research for European regions and cities are comprehensively explored in this timely book. The authors review current theories and present novel case studies of policy-orientated research. By combining policy analysis with urban and regional studies, the book highlights how researchers can be agents of policy learning, helping policymakers to learn how to learn. This book offers unique, real world insights for researchers, practitioners and stakeholders interested in research-based approaches to cities and regions.
This important book examines the role, behaviours and management practices of middle managers operating within the context of collaboration. Presenting new evidence and offering perspectives from both the public and private sectors, the book sets out the implications of this research for policy and practice and offers practical recommendations to policy makers and managers working in this area.
Chan Su Jung provides a thorough review of goal ambiguity in the public sector, exploring the general assertions, arguments and empirical evidence regarding performance goal ambiguity, particularly highlighting its causes, consequences, and mediation effects. The author proposes a new conceptual framework for successful analysis of goal ambiguity that can effectively relate to diverse organizational and program characteristics. Using U.S. federal programs, South Korean central government agencies, and English local authorities as examples, Jung empirically tests his framework to validate the new approach for goal ambiguity analysis. The author corroborates management capacity, third-party involvement, learning times, size, and work complexity as predictors of goal ambiguity and performance. In addition, Jung studies political insulation structures as moderators between management capacity and goal ambiguity, along with the negative effect of goal ambiguity on performance. Based on these empirical findings, the author provides clear and transferable principles to guide further theoretical and conceptual studies on the topic. An essential read for quantitative researchers and doctoral students of public management and policy, this book will guide future empirical studies on goal ambiguity and performance in the public sector.
"We can no longer assume that liberal democracy is the wave of the future... This splendid book is an invaluable contribution to the debate about what ails democracy, and what can be done about it." -Michael J. Sandel, author of Justice "Everyone worried about the state of contemporary politics should read this book." -Anne-Marie Slaughter, President of the New America Foundation The world is in turmoil. From Russia, Turkey, and Egypt to the United States, authoritarian populists have seized power. As a result, democracy itself may now be at risk. Two core components of liberal democracy-individual rights and the popular will-are increasingly at war with each other. As the role of money in politics soared and important issues were taken out of public contestation, a system of "rights without democracy" took hold. Populists who rail against this say they want to return power to the people. But in practice they create something just as bad: a system of "democracy without rights." The consequence, as Yascha Mounk shows in this brilliant and timely book, is that trust in politics is dwindling. Citizens are falling out of love with their political system. Democracy is wilting away. Drawing on vivid stories and original research, Mounk identifies three key drivers of voters' discontent: stagnating living standards, fear of multiethnic democracy, and the rise of social media. To reverse the trend, politicians need to enact radical reforms that benefit the many, not the few. The People vs. Democracy is the first book to describe both how we got here and what we need to do now. For those unwilling to give up either individual rights or the concept of the popular will, Mounk argues that urgent action is needed, as this may be our last chance to save democracy.
We are losing the commons. Austerity and neoliberal policies have depleted our shared wealth; our national utilities have been sold off to foreign conglomerates, social housing is almost non-existent, our parks are cordoned off for private events and our national art galleries are sponsored by banks and oil companies. This plunder deprives us all of our common rights, recognized as far back as the Magna Carta and the Charter of the Forest of 1217, to share fairly and equitably in our public wealth. Guy Standing leads us through a new appraisal of the commons, stemming from the medieval concept of common land reserved in ancient law from marauding barons, to his modern reappraisal of the resources we all hold in common - a brilliant new synthesis that crystallises quite how much public wealth has been redirected to the 1% in recent decades through the state-approved exploitation of everything from our land to our state housing, health and benefit systems, to our justice system, schools, newspapers and even the air we breathe. Plunder of the Commons proposes a charter for a new form of commoning, of remembering, guarding and sharing that which belongs to us all, to slash inequality and soothe our current political instability.
Ministers, Minders and Mandarins brings together the leading academics in this specialty to rigorously assess the impact and consequences of political advisers in parliamentary democracies. The ten contemporary and original case studies focus on issues of tension, trust and tradition, and are written in an accessible and engaging style. Using new empirical findings and theory from a range of public policy canons, the authors analyse advisers' functions, their differing levels of accountability and issues of diversity between governments. Cases include research on the tensions in the UK, the possible unease in Swedish government offices and the role of trust in Greece. Established operations in Australia, Canada, Ireland and New Zealand are compared to relative latecomers to advisory roles, such as Germany, the Netherlands and Denmark. A key comparative work in the field, this book encourages further research into the varied roles of political advisers. Offering an excellent introduction to the complex role political advisers play, this book will be of great interest to upper undergraduate and postgraduate students studying political science and policy administration, as well as researchers and scholars in public policy.
As the U.S. struggles with a range of social issues--whether the opioid epidemic, criminal violence or low education achievement--will look to government to address the problems. In Who Killed Civil Society?, Howard Husock argues that government can do many things well for the disadvantaged--such as providing for basic needs through financial support. But it does not do well in encouraging healthy norms and character, despite the rise of a "social service state" on which the country spends billions. Husock argues that the promotion of healthy norms must be the work of civil society--as it had been historically. The book tells the story of how that changed--and is changing back--through the prism of six key historical figures: Charles Loring Brace, founder of the Children's Aid Society, Jane Addams, founder of Hull House, Mary Richmond, a social work pioneer, Grace Abbott of the federal Children's Bureau, Wilbur Cohen of the Department of Health, Education and Welfare, and Geoffrey Canada, founder of the Harlem Children's Zone.
To some, they are the graduates grasping the first rung on the ladder to power, to others, the unsung heroes of the British parliamentary system. But whether your notion of parliamentary researchers is more The Thick of It than The West Wing, more Yes Minister than House of Cards, there is no doubt that these individuals play an essential role in keeping the giant (and, let's be honest, slightly creaky) machine that drives British politics from juddering to a halt.Branded bag-carriers while actually performing vital duties like drafting speeches and Parliamentary Questions, handling the media and engaging with constituents online, parliamentary researchers do the dirty work behind the scenes, allowing their bosses to focus on their main job - performing.With the help of case studies and guest writers, Robert Dale, himself a former parliamentary researcher, tells the fascinating story of how the MP's office has developed over recent decades, and combines practical advice with acute personal observations on how to get ahead as a researcher.If you're a graduate looking to take your first step into politics, or simply interested in the job around a third of our current Cabinet had before becoming an MP, How to Be a Parliamentary Researcher offers a compelling insight into how the British political system really operates.
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