Chapter

Public Policy and Administration: Comparative Policy Analysis

Richard I. Hofferbert and David Louis Cingranelli

in A New Handbook of Political Science

Published in print September 1998 | ISBN: 9780198294719
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191599361 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0198294719.003.0025
 Public Policy and Administration: Comparative Policy Analysis

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How can we explain policy similarities and differences across time, jurisdiction, and country? Examples are offered in a comparison of social and economic context, the role of institutions, ideology, democratic type, industrialization, and social change as they account for two political outcomes: welfare policy and party election programs. Key methodological and theoretical issues are raised, relating to the empirical demands of causality and contingency. ‘How politics matters’ is ultimately left unanswered because of methodological indeterminacies, though three findings remain: policies are not made in a socio‐economic vacuum, institutional effects are still an open question, and policy conditions are attributable to partisan conditions.

Keywords: causality; comparative policy analysis; contingency; institutions; party election programmes; welfare policy

Chapter.  7024 words. 

Subjects: Politics

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