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By Rhion Jones & Elizabeth Gammell (Paperback)
In July 2018, we published ‘The Politics of Consultation’, a work that draws extensively on the experience and insights of The Consultation Institute.
It tells the tale of, mostly, well-meaning attempts to engage with people and civil society as public bodies and others seek to respond to demands for greater involvement and participation in decision-making. Politicians are caught in the middle of this, torn between enthusiastically supporting consultation – when it suits them, and nervous of its power to delay and divert them when rushing to make change happen.
It is not an academic study but is full of stories that will resonate with anyone interested in public policy at national or local levels and those who wish to see a healthy, inclusive, participative democracy.
The time is right for a proper discussion about the role of evidence in public policy-making at all levels from the parish pump to supra-national institutions. Twenty-four-hour news, social media, direct democracy and the desire for instant gratification have all led to a dumbing down of debate. This book asserts the role that public consultation can have in safeguarding standards in this difficult area, but argues that massive improvements are needed if this is to be achieved.
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