Wayne Parsons

Professor of Public Policy

Queen Mary, University of London

Interests: complexity and its implications for public policy; the politics of the built environment; design theory and practice.


Main Areas of Research: This is just a general statement. When I get some time I will write a more specific entry about my interest in the built environment and why I think that the kind of topics covered by ESRG are SO VERY important to the theory and practice of public policy.

My main area of research is public policy. (See inaugural lecture, ‘Public Policy as Public Learning’) As a field, public policy encompasses a fairly broad range of interests, including political economy, public management and public administration as well as the history of ideas. My current research involves comparative research into recent developments in enhancing policy capacity and modernising policy making. I am also a partner in an EU funded project monitoring democracy in the European Union (EUROPUB). I am currently completing a new book Redesigning Public Policy: New Directions in Theory and Practice. I am on the editorial board on a number of journals, including, The Policy Sciences, Journal of European Public Policy, Innovation, Evidence and Policy and Contemporary Wales. I am also the editor of a series of books for Edward Elgar publishing: New Horizons in Public Policy.

I have contributed to a wide range of journals, including Political Quarterly, Parliamentary Affairs, British Journal of Political Science, Public Policy and Administration, History of Political Thought, and the Australian Journal of Public Administration. I was invited to write the chapter on ‘Politics and Markets: Keynes and his critics’, for the Cambridge History of Twentieth Century Political Thought (2004)

I welcome research supervisions in the areas of public policy, public management and political economy. Courses Taught:

   * Analysing Public Policy Year 3
   * The Politics of Economic Ideas Year 3
   * Implementation and Evaluation MSc/MRes Public Policy

Major Publications:


The Political Economy of British Regional Policy, Routledge 1988;

The Power of the Financial Press: Journalism and The Formation of Economic Opinion in Britain and the USA, Edward Elgar/Rutgers, 1989;

Public Policy: An introduction to the Theory and Practice of Policy Analysis, Edward Elgar 1996; Keynes and the Quest for A Moral Science, Edward Elgar 1997.

Recent Journal articles and book chapters:

'Modernising Policy Making for the 21 st Century', Public Policy and Administration , Vol 16, No 3, 2001. pp 93-111

'From Muddling Through To Muddling Up: Evidence Based Policy Making and the Modernization of British Government ', Public Policy and Administration , Vol 17, No 3 2002.pp 43- 60

‘Not Just Steering But Weaving: Relevant Knowledge and the Craft of Building Policy Capacity and Coherence', Australian Journal of Public Administration vol 63 no 1 (March 2004, ) pp 43-57

‘Designing for Innovation in the Public Sector', Administration , Vol 53, no 3 (2005), pp7-18.

'Politics and Markets: Keynes and his Critics', in T. Ball and R Bellamy (eds ) The Cambridge History of Twentieth Century Political Thought , Cambridge , 2004. pp 45- 69

'Analytical Frameworks for Policy and Project Evaluation: Contextualizing Welfare Economics, Public Choice and Management Approaches' in L. Giorgi (ed ) Project and Policy Evaluation , Ashgate /ICCR Vienna, 2002, pp 56-78

'Strategic Policy Making' in T. Butcher (ed ) Modernizing Civil Services: an International Perspective , Edward Elgar 2004, pp 147- 184

(ed) With L. Giorgi, I. von Homeyer and Wayne Parsons: Democracy in the European Union , London , Routledge, 2006. pp217

‘Conclusion: What future for European Integration and Democracy', pp 180- 198, in Giorgi (et al,) 2006.

‘Policy Analysis in Britain ', in F. Fischer (ed) Handbook for Policy Analysis , New York , Taylor and Francis, 2006, pp 537-532.

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