Power and policymaking
Kiernan, Annabel K. (2000) Power and policymaking. PhD thesis, University of Warwick.
WRAP_THESIS_Kiernan_2000.pdf - Requires a PDF viewer such as GSview, Xpdf or Adobe Acrobat Reader
Official URL: http://webcat.warwick.ac.uk/record=b1659658~S15
This thesis is concerned with approaches to policymaking analysis. It argues that
dominant neo-pluralist theories of policymaking have limited explanatory force.
This arises from the method of inquiry, which necessarily limits the scope of
analysis. The emphasis on inductive methods, coupled with a narrow focus on nonformalised
sub-state networks, produces a model which is a useful way of
identifying non-state policy actors, but which has no explanatory capacity outside
In particular two weaknesses in network analysis are highlighted as significant. The
first is that neo-pluralism does not account for the possible constraint on meso-level
activity by the state. The state's ability to constrain individual agency may arise
either from its position as a distinct social actor, or from it being an aspect of
structural constraint. As this latter point implies, the second key weakness with
neo-pluralist network analysis is owing to its structural indeterminism.
The thesis argues that an adequate account of the policymaking process must
recognise the possibility of limits to actor autonomy which arise from individual
interaction with structure. Although the argument is made for a structural
dimension to policymaking analysis, it concedes the dangers of functionalism and
determinism which can arise from the application of structural frameworks.
Consequently, the thesis argues for a duality of structure and agency as the core of
political analysis. This argument is made on theoretical grounds, and via discussion
of an empirical case study of the EU Task Force Environment: Water.
The argument then is for a dual approach to policymaking which utilises both
inductive and deductive methods. It is argued (a) that a Marxist analysis of the state
and the structural constraints of capitalism can be combined (although not
integrated) with networks analysis in a dual approach, and (b) that this
combination provides the best model of policymaking.
|Item Type:||Thesis or Dissertation (PhD)|
|Subjects:||H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)|
|Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH):||Policy sciences, Pluralism|
|Official Date:||June 2000|
|Institution:||University of Warwick|
|Theses Department:||Department of Politics and International Studies|
|Extent:||viii, 337 leaves|
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