Contents:

Part One: The Changing Landscape

Chapter 1 - Introduction: Vote for me!

  • The politicians’ dilemma
  • National, local and devolved politics
  • International perspective
  • Is the UK the world’s leader in consultation?

Chapter 2 - Why politicians should consult

  • Sounder decisions
  • Unpopular choices
  • Stakeholder support
  • Public education
  • Previous promises
  • Blunders and mistakes
  • Public relations spin
  • An impression of activity
  • Decision avoidance
  • Legislative obligations
  • Best and worst motives

Chapter 3 - The legal framework

  • Statutory duties
  • Equality law
  • Legitimate expectations
  • Judicial reviews: Building Schools for the Future, King Richard III, the rat run case, Greenpeace, Birmingham Council, library closures, Lewisham Hospital
  • Aarhus
  • Gunning Principles

 

Part Two: The Role of Consultation in Politics

Chapter 4 - Introduction: Beyond tokenism?

  • Tokenism according to Arnstein
  • Power sharing – right and left wing views
  • Evaluating consultation
  • Playing politics
  • The fall of a forestry minister

Chapter 5 - Consultation and Planning

  • Town planning
  • Neighbourhood planning
  • Nuclear power
  • Energy from waste
  • HS2
  • NIMBYism
  • Airports
  • Fracking

Chapter 6 - Consultation and Health

  • Loving the NHS
  • Engagement mechanisms
  • A surfeit of abbreviations
  • Organisational complexity
  • Mid-Staffordshire
  • Local engagement
  • Patient pathways
  • Foundation trusts
  • Children’s cardiac surgery (Royal Brompton Hospital judicial review)
  • Hospital reconfigurations

Chapter 7 - Consultation and governments – national and local

  • Schools and education
  • Sunningdale Institute
  • Government blunders
  • Council structures
  • Double devolution
  • Community websites
  • Participatory budgeting
  • Council budgets
  • Symbolic consultations

 

Part Three: The Influence of Politics on Consultation

Chapter 8 - Introduction: Is anyone in charge?

  • Silo mentality and the drive for centralisation
  • Politicians v technocrats
  • Who’s in charge?
  • Select committees
  • Reluctant stakeholders
  • Stakeholder mapping
  • A brief history of consultation guidance
  • Parliamentary ping-pong
  • The Whiston case
  • BBC consultation
  • Whitehall gets it right?

Chapter 9 - How political timing affects consultation

  • Established consensus
  • Volatility
  • The policy life cycle
  • The electoral cycle
  • Purdah problems
  • The Big Conversation
  • Serendipity

Chapter 10 - The community’s influence on consultation

  • Parish politics and the willow tree
  • Petitions ancient and modern
  • Petition platforms
  • Analysis treatment
  • The cardinal’s miscalculation
  • Community advocacy
  • Voluntary bodies

Chapter 11 - The influence of business on consultation

  • Public affairs and lobbying
  • The water industry
  • Privatised utilities
  • BBC Charter renewal
  • West Coast Mainline fiasco
  • Management consultancies
  • Single options
  • Airspace consultations
  • Fracking again
  • Big Tobacco
  • Fixed-odds betting
  • Clientelism

 

Part Four: Where Next? The Challenges Faced by Consultation

Chapter 12 - Introduction: Revisiting the rationale

  • Employee consultation
  • Power imbalance
  • Sciencewise and the culture of the expert
  • Engaging on badger-culling
  • Unpopular politicians
  • Challenging direct democracy
  • Dumbing down debates

Chapter 13 - What consultation must combat

  • Three drivers of dumbing down debate
  • Disappointment with democracy
  • Failure of political careers
  • Looser language and lies
  • Social media
  • Echo chambers
  • Fake news
  • Trust

Chapter 14 - Improving consultations: three duties for consultors

  • Winners and losers
  • Parliamentary posturing
  • Too many standards?
  • Duty to define
  • Duty to explain
  • Duty to engage

Chapter 15 - Improving dialogue: three rights for consultees

  • Consultee entitlements
  • Right to know
  • Right to be heard
  • Public consultation hearings
  • Right to influence
  • Notional frameworks

Chapter 16 - Is there a better way?

  • Judicial review, the disadvantages
  • Adversarial legalism
  • Dredging Oakland Harbour
  • Fluoride in drinking water
  • Public Consultation Act
  • An Office of Public Engagement?

Chapter 17 - ‘Dear Politician’

  • Hurrah for public administration
  • Pride in process
  • Help citizens participate
  • Champion public involvement
  • Leverage parliament
  • Saying no
  • Care with referendums
  • Better consultative instincts