Public Policy and Private Interest explains the complexities of the policy making process in a refreshingly clear way for students who are new to this subject. The key topics it explains are:

  • How policy originates, is refined, legitimised, implemented, evaluated and terminated in the forms of theoretical models of the policy process;
  • Which actors and institutions are most influential in determining the nature of policy;
  • The values that shape the policy agenda such as ideology, institutional self-interest and resource capabilities;
  • The outcome of policies, and why they succeed or fail;
  • The main policy theories including the very latest insights from network theory and post-modernism;
  • How national policy is influenced by globalization.

The text is fully illustrated throughout with a broad range of national and international case studies on subjects such as the banking crisis, the creation of unitary authorities and global environmental policy and regulation.

Combining both a clear summary of debates and theories in public policy and a new and original approach to the subject, this book is essential reading for students of public policy and policy analysis.

chapter 1|9 pages


chapter 3|11 pages

Subjective approaches

chapter 4|16 pages

Policy, ideology and ideas

chapter 5|15 pages


chapter 6|15 pages

Ethics and public policy

chapter 7|11 pages

Policy and power

chapter 8|12 pages

Public policy in autocracies

chapter 9|12 pages

Liberal democracy

chapter 11|12 pages

Getting policy on the agenda

chapter 12|14 pages

Evaluation and validation

chapter 13|12 pages

Refining policy towards legitimation

chapter 14|11 pages


chapter 15|13 pages

Policy evolution

chapter 16|11 pages

Success and failure

chapter 17|14 pages

Deliberative policy making

chapter 18|7 pages