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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Developed through Crises

This book traces the economic ideology of the UK Labour Party from its origins to the current day. Through its analysis, the book emphasises key crises, including the 1926 general strike, the 1931 Great Depression, the 1979 Winter of Discontent and the 2007 economic crisis.

In analysing this history, the ideology of the Labour Party is examined through four core themes:

  • the party’s definition of socialism;

  • the role of the state in economic decision making;

  • the party’s understanding of inequalities;

  • its relationship with external groups, such as the Fabian Society and the trade union movement.

The result is a systematic exploration of the drivers and key ideas behind the Labour Party’s economic ideology. In demonstrating how crises have affected the party’s economic policy, the book presents a historical analysis of the party’s evolution since its formation and offers insights into how future changes may occur.

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Critical Perspectives on Work, Subjectivities and Struggles

The words ‘precarity’ and ‘precariousness’ are widely used when discussing work, social conditions and experiences. However, there is no consensus on their meaning or how best to use them to explore social changes.

This book shows how scholars have mapped out these notions, offering substantive analyses of issues such as the relationships between precariousness, debt, migration, health and workers’ mobilisations, and how these relationships have changed in the context of COVID-19.

Bringing together an international group of authors from diverse fields, this book offers a distinctive critical perspective on the processes of precarisation, focusing in particular on the European context.

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Author: Jonathan Wistow

In this challenging and original study, Wistow positions social policy within political economy and social contract debates.

Focusing on individual, intergenerational and societal outcomes related to health, place and social mobility in England, he draws on empirical evidence to show how the social contract produces longstanding, highly patterned and inequitable consequences in these areas. Globalisation and the political economy simultaneously contribute to the extent and nature of social problems and to social policy’s capacity to address them effectively.

Applying social contract theory, this book shows that society needs to take ownership of the outcomes it produces and critically interrogates the individualism inherent within the political economy.

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Living the Contradiction

ePDF and ePUB available Open Access under CC-BY-NC-ND licence.

The Nordic countries are regarded as frontrunners in promoting equality, yet women’s experiences on the ground are in many ways at odds with this rhetoric.

Putting the spotlight on the lived experiences of women working in tech-driven research and innovation areas in the Nordic countries, this volume explores why, despite numerous programmes, women continue to constitute a minority in these sectors.

The contributors flesh out the differences and similarities across different Nordic countries and explore how the shifts in labour market conditions have impacted on women in Research and Innovation.

This is an invaluable contribution to global debates around the mechanisms that maintain gendered structures in Research and Innovation, from academia to biotechnology and IT.

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The Alternatives Ahead
Author: Andreas Nölke

The COVID-19 pandemic is a Rorschach test for society: everyone sees something different in it, and the range of political and economic responses to the crisis can leave us feeling overwhelmed.

This book cuts through the confusion, dissecting the new post-coronavirus capitalism into several policy areas and spheres of action to inform academic, policy and public discourse.

Covering all the major aspects of contemporary capitalism that have been affected by the pandemic, Andreas Nölke deftly analyses the impacts of the crisis on our socio-economic and political systems. Signposting a new era for global capitalism, he offers alternatives for future economic development in the wake of COVID-19.

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Central Europe’s Illiberal Revolt
Author: Ivan Kalmar

Since the ‘migration crisis’ of 2016, long-simmering tensions between the Western members of the European Union and its ‘new’ Eastern members – Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, and Hungary – have proven to be fertile ground for rebellion against liberal values and policies.

In this startling and original book Ivan Kalmar argues that Central Europe illiberalism is a misguided response to the devastating effects of global neoliberalism which arose from the area’s brutal transition to capitalism in the 1990s.

Kalmar argues that dismissive attitudes towards ‘Eastern Europeans’ in the EU as incapable of real democracy are a form of racism, and connected to recent racist attacks on migrants from the area to the West.

He explores the close relation between racism towards Central Europeans and racism by Central Europeans: a people white, but not quite.

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Historical Perspectives: 1200–2000

This ambitious collection follows the evolution of capitalism from its origins in 13th-century European towns to its 16th-century expansion into Asia, Africa and South America and on to the global capitalism of modern day.

Written by distinguished historians and social scientists, the chapters examine capitalism and its critics and the level of variation and convergence in its operation across locations. The authors illuminate the aspects of capitalism that have encouraged, but also limited, social responsibility and environmental sustainability.

Covering times, places and topics that have often been overlooked in the existing literature, this important contribution to the field of economic history charts the most comprehensive chronology of capitalism to date.

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Why Flexible Working Leads to (Self-)Exploitation
Author: Heejung Chung

Does flexible working really provide a better work-life balance?

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, flexible working has become the norm for many workers. This volume offers an original examination of flexible working using data from 30 European countries and drawing on studies conducted in Australia, the US and India. Rather than providing a better work-life balance, the book reveals how flexible working can lead to exploitation, which manifests differently for women and men, such as more care responsibilities or increased working hours.

Taking a critical stance, this book investigates the potential risks and benefits of flexible working and provides crucial policy recommendations for overcoming the negative consequences.

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Author: Maud Perrier

Spanning the United Kingdom, United States and Australia, this comparative study brings maternal workers’ politicized voices to the centre of contemporary debates on childcare, work and gender.

The book illustrates how maternal workers continue to organize against low pay, exploitative working conditions and state retrenchment and provides a unique theorization of feminist divisions and solidarities.

Bringing together social reproduction with maternal studies, this is a resonating call to build a cross-sectoral, intersectional movement around childcare. Maud Perrier shows why social reproduction needs to be at the centre of a critical theory of work, care and mothering for post-pandemic times.

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A Cross-Cultural Perspective

Much of the literature that addresses youth unemployment has been framed within an economic paradigm and much less attention has been focused on the role played by country-specific value orientations in structuring economic activity.

Drawing on extensive fieldwork research and the work of experts in Europe and the United States, this book provides a culturally nuanced analysis of key issues relating to youth unemployment.

Examining the causes and consequences of youth unemployment, it explores ways forward to promote economic self-sufficiency. This pioneering work offers invaluable tailored policy solutions to tackle one of today’s most important socioeconomic issues.

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