British and Irish Politics and Policy

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    Universal Credit and the perspectives of ex-Jobcentre Plus staff

Universal Credit and the perspectives of ex-Jobcentre Plus staff

Universal Credit has attracted considerable criticism from experts and politicians. Yet could it be that it has also caused civil servants associated with the policy to leave their jobs? Kayleigh Garthwaite, Jo Ingold, and Mark Monaghan present findings from preliminary research with former personnel from Jobcentre Plus.

Throughout 2018, Universal Credit (UC) has been a prominent feature of political discussion, […]

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    Labour’s political calculations: explaining the party’s muddled policy on Brexit

Labour’s political calculations: explaining the party’s muddled policy on Brexit

Why is Jeremy Corbyn ignoring calls for a second referendum, despite these being backed by a substantial part of his party’s membership, as well as by non-members? Eric Shaw explains the factors affecting Labour’s inability to agree on a clear and feasible Brexit policy, and warns that inevitably divisive decisions will have to be taken.

The Labour Party’s stance on […]

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    Care leavers in higher education: how many are there and why does it matter?

Care leavers in higher education: how many are there and why does it matter?

Do care leavers enter higher education with the same propensity as other young people? Neil Harrison explains why the data we currently use to answer this question are flawed, and how they can skew policymaking in this area.

The snippet that just 6% of care leavers go on to higher education has become cemented in the media and policy discourse. […]

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    Everyday authoritarianism: an anthropology of citizenship and welfare in austerity Britain

Everyday authoritarianism: an anthropology of citizenship and welfare in austerity Britain

Drawing on long-term ethnographic fieldwork, Insa Koch explains how British citizens experience democracy and what grassroots understandings of politics and care they bring to their encounters with the state.

Liberal democracy appears in crisis. From law and order policies to austerity measures to the Brexit vote, commentators have rushed to explain the current conjuncture. But while many have argued over […]

The very short history of ‘no deal’ Brexit

When Theresa May proclaimed ‘no deal is better than a bad deal’, she was talking primarily about the long-term UK-EU relationship, not the initial divorce. Craig Berry explains how, through a combination of opportunism and incompetence, Britain crashing out of the EU has become a very real possibility.

The postponement of the parliamentary vote on the withdrawal agreement until the […]

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    David Cameron, David Beckham, and the UK’s social mobility problem

David Cameron, David Beckham, and the UK’s social mobility problem

Lee Elliot Major and Stephen Machin explain how Britain has become less mobile, particularly at the top and bottom of society.

One David was born in a terraced house in East London, his father a kitchen fitter, his mother a hairdresser. The other David grew up in an idyllic village in the English countryside, his father a stockbroker, his mother […]

Method to madness: political science in 2018

Why has British politics been at a seemingly endless deadlock since 2015? Artemis Photiadou brings together the most salient strands of political science research that have attempted to explain electoral preferences, post-Brexit realities, and party politics in 2018.

Britain is undergoing a period of contradiction and impasse. As it attempts to ‘take back control’ of its governance and move away […]

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    ‘Heirs apparent’ in No. 10 and beyond: why career ascendancy patterns matter

‘Heirs apparent’ in No. 10 and beyond: why career ascendancy patterns matter

In Westminster-style democracies, it is not uncommon for prime ministers to assume office by inheriting the post outside of a general election. Ludger Helms assesses the performance of prime ministers who were previously ‘heirs apparent’ and finds that their prior experience does not tend to lead to success.

Textbook accounts on political succession in parliamentary regimes usually centre on challengers […]