Research

 

You will find a complete range of our monographs, muti-authored and edited works including peer-reviewed, original scholarly research across the social sciences and aligned disciplines. We publish long and short form research and you can browse the complete Bristol University Press and Policy Press archive of over 1400 titles.

Policy Press also publishes policy reviews and polemic work which aim to challenge policy and practice in certain fields. These books have a practitioner in mind and are practical, accessible in style, as well as being academically sound and referenced.
 

Books: Research

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International Handbook of City Recovery
Authors: Anne Power and Bruce Katz

This original book builds on the author’s research in Phoenix cities to present a vivid story of Europe’s post-industrial cities pre- and post- financial crisis. Using varied case studies the book explores how policy responses to the economic crisis have played out in different European cities, with their contrasting conditions, history and performance generating contrasting reactions. The book compares changes between Northern and Southern European countries, bigger and smaller cities, over the past ten years. Across the continent social cohesion, community investment and social enterprise have gained momentum as Europe’s crowded, resource-constrained cities face up to environmental and social limits faster than other less densely urban countries, such as the US. The author presents a compelling framework to show that Europe’s cities are creating a new industrial economy to combat environmental and social unravelling.

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Policies and their Consequences since the Crisis

Social Policy in a Cold Climate offers a data-rich, evidence-based analysis of the impact Labour and coalition government policies have had on inequality and on the delivery of services such as health, education, adult social care, housing and employment in the wake of the greatest recession of our time.

The authors provide an authoritative and unflinching analysis of recent approaches to social policy and their outcomes following the financial crisis, with particular focus on poverty and inequality. Through a detailed look at spending, outputs and outcomes the book offers a unique appraisal of Labour and the coalition’s impact as well as an insightful assessment of future directions.

This volume offers a much-awaited follow-up to the critically acclaimed ‘A more equal society?’ (2005) and ‘Towards a more equal society?’ (2009).

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Providing quality early education and care for disadvantaged children

Early education and care has become a central policy area in many countries. As services expand rapidly, it is crucial to examine whether children from disadvantaged backgrounds receive provision of the highest possible quality.

In this original, topical book, leading experts from eight countries examine how early education and care is organised, funded and regulated in their countries. Bringing together recent statistical evidence, the book gives an up-to-date picture of access to services by different groups, providing rich insights on how policies play out in practice, and the extent to which they help or hinder disadvantaged children to receive high quality provision.

An equal start? reveals the common tensions and complexities countries face in ensuring that early education and care is affordable, accessible and of high quality. Its critical examination of the potential for better policies ensures that An equal start? will be of interest to academic readers as well as policy makers and practitioners.

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The fall and rise of great industrial cities

‘Weak market cities’ across European and America, or ‘core cities’ as they were in their heyday, went from being ‘industrial giants’ dominating their national, and eventually the global, economy, to being ‘devastation zones’. In a single generation three quarters of all manufacturing jobs disappeared, leaving dislocated, impoverished communities, run down city centres and a massive population exodus.

So how did Europeans react? And how different was their response from America’s? This book looks closely at the recovery trajectories of seven European cities from very different regions of the EU. Their dramatic decline, intense recovery efforts and actual progress on the ground underline the significance of public underpinning in times of crisis. Innovative enterprises, new-style city leadership, special neighbourhood programmes and skills development are all explored. The American experience, where cities were largely left ‘to their own devices’, produced a slower, more uncertain recovery trajectory. This book will provide much that is original and promising to all those wanting to understand the ground-level realities of urban change and progress.

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Poverty, inequality and policy since 1997

When New Labour came to power in 1997, its leaders asked for it to be judged after ten years on its success in making Britain ‘a more equal society’. As it approaches the end of an unprecedented third term in office, this book asks whether Britain has indeed moved in that direction.

The highly successful earlier volume “A more equal society?” was described by Polly Toynbee as “the LSE’s mighty judgement on inequality”. Now this second volume by the same team of authors provides an independent assessment of the success or otherwise of New Labour’s policies over a longer period. It provides:

· consideration by a range of expert authors of a broad set of indicators and policy areas affecting poverty, inequality and social exclusion;

· analysis of developments up to the third term on areas including income inequality, education, employment, health inequalities, neighbourhoods, minority ethnic groups, children and older people;

· an assessment of outcomes a decade on, asking whether policies stood up to the challenges, and whether successful strategies have been sustained or have run out of steam; chapters on migration, social attitudes, the devolved administrations, the new Equality and Human Rights Commission, and future pressures.

The book is essential reading for academic and student audiences with an interest in contemporary social policy, as well as for all those seeking an objective account of Labour’s achievements in power.

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Neighbourhood problems and community self-help
Author: Liz Richardson

How people can be persuaded to take more control of their own lives continues to be a subject of policy and academic debate, and the contribution of active citizens to improving societal well-being is high across different policy agendas. But the promotion of community self-help raises a wide range of questions - for people working in neighbourhoods, for policy makers, for politicians, and for residents themselves - about how we promote engagement, what would motivate people to become active, and more fundamentally about the ongoing relevance and value of community activity.

“DIY Community Action” offers thought-provoking answers to these questions, based on detailed real-life evidence from over 100 community groups, each trying to combat neighbourhood problems. It presents a lively challenge to the existing thinking on contested debates, and proposes ways forward for community building.

This timely publication is an engaging resource for policy makers, practitioners, academics, students and general readers interested in exploring community engagement and active citizenship. Its insightful analysis will be of interest to students of social policy, sociology, community work, housing and regeneration, local government studies and public policy.

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Bringing up children in disadvantaged neighbourhoods
Author: Anne Power

Seen through the eyes of parents, mainly mothers, “City survivors” tells the eye-opening story of what it is like to bring up children in troubled city neighbourhoods. The book provides a unique insider view on the impact of neighbourhood conditions on family life and explores the prospects for families from the point of view of equality, integration, schools, work, community, regeneration and public services.

“City Survivors” is based on yearly visits over seven years to two hundred families living in four highly disadvantaged city neighbourhoods, two in East London and two in Northern inner and outer city areas. Twenty four families, six from each area, explain over time from the inside, how neighbourhoods in and of themselves directly affect family survival. These twenty four stories convey powerful messages from parents about the problems they want tackled, and the things that would help them. The main themes explored in the book are neighbourhood, community, family, parenting, incomes and locals, the need for civic intervention.

The book offers original and in-depth, qualitative evidence in a readable and accessible form that will be invaluable to policy-makers, practitioners, university students, academics and general readers interested in the future of families in cities.

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Essays in honour of Howard Glennerster

Social policy is now central to political debate in Britain. What has been achieved by efforts to improve services and reduce poverty? What is needed to deliver more effective and popular services to all and increase social justice? How can we make social policy work? These are some of the questions discussed in this new and wide-ranging collection of essays by a distinguished panel of leading social policy academics.

The book covers key issues in contemporary social policy, particularly concentrating on recent changes. It examines the history and goals of social policy as well as its delivery, focusing in turn on the family and the state, schools, higher education, healthcare, social care, communities and housing. Redistribution is also examined, exploring child poverty, pension reform and resources for welfare.

The essays in this collection have been specially written to honour the 70th birthday of Howard Glennerster whose pioneering work has been concerned not only with the theoretical, historical and political foundations of social policies but, crucially, with how they work in practice. It is a collection of primary importance for those working in and interested in policy and politics in a wide variety of fields and for students of social policy, public policy and the public sector.

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Big places, small spaces
Authors: Anne Power and John Houghton

Through a close look at major British cities, using Birmingham as a case study, the book explores the origins of Britain’s acute urban decline and sprawling exodus; the reasons why ‘one size doesn’t fit all’ in cities of the future and the potential for smart growth, mixed communities and sustainable cities. Based on live examples and hands-on experience, this extremely accessible book offers a unique ‘insider’ perspective on policy making and practical impacts. It will attract policymakers in cities and government as well as students, regeneration bodies, community organisations and environmental specialists.

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New Labour, poverty, inequality and exclusion
Editors: John Hills and Kitty Stewart

This major new book provides, for the first time, a detailed evaluation of policies on poverty and social exclusion since 1997, and their effects. Bringing together leading experts in the field, it considers the challenges the government has faced, the policies chosen and the targets set in order to assess results. Drawing on research from the Centre for Analysis of Social Exclusion, and on external evaluations, the book asks how children, older people, poor neighbourhoods, ethnic minorities and other vulnerable groups have fared under New Labour and seeks to assess the government both on its own terms - in meeting its own targets - and according to alternative views of social exclusion.

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