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 1,500 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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Embodied Democracy in the Global South
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This book centres on women living with HIV in South Africa who have navigated affective relationships, activist networks, government institutions and global coalitions to transform health policies that govern access to HIV medicines. Drawing on 20 years of ethnographic and policy research in South Africa, Brazil and India, it highlights the value of understanding the embodied and political dimensions of health policy and reveals the networked threads that weave women’s precarity into the governance of technologies and the technologies of governance. It illuminates the entwined histories of health policy evolution, systemic inequality and everyday life and calls for a recognition of the embodied ramifications of democratic politics and global health governance.

By integrating medical anthropology with science studies and political theory, this book traces the history of the struggle to access HIV medicines in the Global South and brings it into the present by articulating the lessons learned by activists and policy makers engaged in shaping these vital health policies.

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A Global Perspective

In this book, faith leaders, scholars and activists from around the globe provide their perspective on faith and abortion. They reflect on examples of faith organisations which have provided leadership on the issue as well as examining religious approaches from Buddhist, Christian, Jewish, Muslim and interfaith perspectives.

Challenging the assumption that all people of faith are anti-abortion, this book provides a counterpoint to right-wing faith perspectives and outlines how faith communities reimagine abortion as an issue of social, pastoral and theological concern.

Providing perspectives from the global North and South, it includes settings where abortion is legal, and where it is restricted, and settings where abortion stigma is ever-present to settings where abortion is normalised. It also demonstrates the complex connections between faith and abortion, how women and pregnant people are positioned in society and how morality is claimed and challenged.

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Food, Heritage and Trade in Post-Authoritarian Environments
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Post-Soviet Latvia and post-apartheid South Africa are far apart geographically and yet have endured a similar history of colonial and authoritarian rule before transitioning to democracy at the end of the 20th century. This book examines these two nations in an unusual comparative study of post-authoritarian efforts to decolonize production and trade.

The book combines an analysis of political economy and ecocultural heritage to unpack alternative trade formations. It also connects world systems thinking with Indigenous knowledge to articulate a decolonial theory of development and change over the longue durée. Conclusions and insights drawn are timely and important for a planet confronted by crises such as authoritarianism, laissez-faire capitalism, climate change and the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Lessons from the Crisis of Western Liberalism

What part do the values of growth and prosperity, freedom and justice, security and democracy play in social policy and human welfare? How can we judge the policies offered to us as the recipe for progress?

At a time of global ‘permacrisis’, Sebastian Taylor applies his extensive frontline experience working with health systems and healthcare in the Global North and South to assess the concrete impact of contemporary liberal values on our welfare, development and environmental survival.

Drawing on research from around the world, he uses health as an objective metric to assess how effective these policies are for individuals and society as a whole.

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Global Policies, Narratives and Practices
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The past 30 years have seen risk become a major field of study, most recently with the COVID-19 pandemic positioning it at the centre of public awareness, yet there is limited understanding of how risk can and should be used in policy making.

This book provides an accessible guide to the key elements of risk in policy making, including its role in rhetoric to legitimise decisions and choices.

Using risk as a framework, it examines how policy makers in a range of countries responded to the COVID-19 pandemic and explains why some were more successful than others.

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Between Politics and Business
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This book unpacks the political economy of China’s COVID-19 vaccine supplies to the Global South. Examining the political and economic forces at play, the book demonstrates how China’s vaccine provisions have been determined by a complex set of commercial interests, domestic politics, and geopolitical relationships.

The book sheds light on how domestic interests shape China’s role in global governance and its international economic engagement. Its analysis contributes to broader academic debates on the politics and economics of crises, as well as offering new insights on how pre-existing political and market forces shape aid and trade in the context of crisis.

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EPDF and EPUB available Open Access under CC-BY-NC-ND licence.

Though a globally shared experience, the COVID-19 pandemic has affected societies across the world in radically different ways. This book examines the unique implications of the pandemic in the Global South.

With international contributors from a variety of disciplines including health, economics and geography, the book investigates the pandemic’s effects on development, medicine, gender (in)equality and human rights among other issues. Its analysis illuminates further subsequent crises of interconnection, a pervasive health provision crisis and a resulting rise in socio-economic inequality.

The book’s assessment offers an urgent discourse on the ways in which the impact of COVID-19 can be mitigated in some of the most challenging socio-economic contexts in the world.

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The COVID-19 Response and its Controversies
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With Sweden traditionally hailed as a social and economic model, it is no wonder that the Swedish response to the COVID-19 pandemic raised a lot of questions – and eyebrows – around the world. This short book explores Sweden’s unique response to the global pandemic and the strong wave of controversies it triggered.

It helps to makes sense of the response by defining ‘a Swedish model’ that incorporates the country’s value system, underpinning its politics and administration in relation to, among other things, welfare, democracy, civil liberties and respect for expertise. The book also acts as a case study for understanding the moral and normative ways in which different national approaches to the pandemic have been compared.

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Between International Law and Politics

Amid a global health crisis, the process for declaring a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC) is at a crossroads.

As a formal declaration by the World Health Organization, a PHEIC is governed by clear legislation as to what is, and what is not, deemed a global health security threat. However, it has become increasingly politicized, and the legal criteria now appear to be secondary to the political motivation or outcome of the announcement. Addressing multiple empirical case studies, including COVID-19, this multidisciplinary book explores the relationship between international law and international relations to interrogate how a PHEIC is declared and its role in how we collectively respond to outbreaks.

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Health services are among the most expensive and complex areas of social policy.

Using qualitative comparative analysis to explore 11 developed countries’ health services, this volume considers the links between a range of different outcome measures and levels of funding, social determinants and different types of health expenditures. It also reflects on how those systems responded to the first wave of COVID-19.

This ambitious text identifies which underpinning factors are associated with the strongest outcomes, providing a rigorous account of health systems and health policies in the context of their wider economies and societies.

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