What have been the defining characteristics, trends and changes of Britain’s post-war public policy? Developments in British Public Policy provides a comprehensive review of all the key public policy sectors in contemporary British Politics today. Each chapter is written by a leading authority on each policy sector, and includes definitions of key terms, examples and case studies, questions for discussion, and suggestions for further reading. It will be essential reading for all students of contemporary British public policy and will serve as an ideal companion to Policy-Making in Britain: An Introduction.
Chapter 1: Agricultural Policy
For much of the post-war period, agricultural policy offered the prime example of a policy arena dominated by a stable and exclusive policy community in which policy change occurred only incrementally. Policy was framed around a ‘productionist’ policy paradigm which emphasized the maximization of domestic production in the interests of food security, a goal that it was thought required and justified the payment of considerable subsidies to farmers. British membership of the European Economic Community (EEC) in 1973 changed the way in which these subsidies were paid, but not their extent. Agricultural policy even survived largely unscathed the shift to a neo-liberal policy paradigm which characterized the Thatcher Governments during the 1980s.
However, by the start of the 21st century, both the form ...