Anniversary Special Issues
Taking risks and breaking new frontiers in Policy & Politicy
This issue aims to make a statement about the field of policy and politics, including where it has been, what it has done, what it is and where it might be going. It comprises scholarship that has rarely been combined in such a collage to highlight the diversities of the field and the opportunities for learning. It charges scholars to consider different ways of thinking about what we can discover and construct in the world, how we can conduct our science and how our research contributes to understandings and knowledge within and beyond the academy.
Transformational Change through Public Policy
How can Public Policy as a discipline contribute to desperately needed transformational change in our societies? Climate scientists call for systemic change; our liberal democracies suffer from crises in legitimacy; economic and social inequality continues to grow; culture wars increasingly polarise societies, and so on. Scholars have excelled at describing and diagnosing these problems exploring and explaining how they have emerged, and occasionally positing few ideas for their improvements. Despite the knowledge gained in our scholarship, a need continues to persist and spread for ideas to achieve deeper and more transformative societal changes.
When creating this issue we posed two challenges to scholars from the diverse studies of policy and politics:
- What have we learned from our respective literatures about societal problems and about past successes and failures in trying to achieve transformational change?
- What recommendations can we draw from these literatures to achieve transformational change?
Answering these questions will require us to draw from our respective empirical studies of what is happening here and now to derive recommendations for realizing better societies. It will require us to engage seriously with old and new theories seeking change and apply them to achieving changes in public policies and societal transformations. It will require us to think outside of our academic silos towards questions of practice. Finally, we will have to explore individual and collective changemakers beyond the institutional actors that we are used to studying.
This issue will feature comprehensive coverage and inclusivity in both research approaches and geographical focus.
To celebrate our 50th Anniversary we will be making this special issue free to access throughout August.