`Local governance have gained massive attention among scholars and practitioners during the past several years. Peter John's book fills a void in the literature by tracing the historical roots of local governance and by placing his findings in a comparative perspective' - Professor Jon Pierre, University of Gothenburg, Sweden
`Peter John has produced a fascinating and stimulating book in which he assesses current developments in urban politics and local government in Europe and suggests how these changes are leading to different patterns of sub-national territorial politics in the EU today. What he has to say is of important interest to all students of local government; comparative politics and of territorial politics more generally' - Michael Goldsmith, University of Salford
`this book offers a fascinating comparative analysis... themes such as New Public Management, globalisation, regionalism and privatisation will be relevant to numerous courses in government, politics, public administration and public policy' - West European Politics
This text provides a comprehensive introduction to local government and urban politics in contemporary Western Europe. It is the first book to map and explain the change in local political systems and to place these in comparative context.
The book introduces students to the traditional structures and institutions of local government and shows how these have been transformed in response to increased economic and political competition, new ideas, institutional reform and the Europeanization of public policy.
At the book's core is the perceived transition from local government to local governance. The book traces this key development thematically across a wide range of West European states including: Belgium, France, Greece, Italy, Germany, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain and the United Kingdom.
Peter John is Reader in the School of Politics and Sociology at Birkbeck College, London. He is the author of Analysing Public Policy (London, Cassell, 1998)
institutions groups and networks society and the economy individual interests ideas.
The book explains each one, offers constructive criticisms and explores their claims in the light of a variety of American, British and European examples.
Arguing that no one framework offers a comprehensive explanation of public policy; John suggests a synthesis based on different aspects of the approaches, introducing concepts/approaches of advocacy coalitions, punctuated equilibrium and evolution as more effective ways to understand public policy.
Combining both a clear summary of debates in public policy and a new and original approach to the subject, this book remains essential reading for students of public policy and policy analysis.