Is this as good as it gets? descriptive representation and equality in public policy-making

Afridi, Asif Mahmood Khan (2017). Is this as good as it gets? descriptive representation and equality in public policy-making. University of Birmingham. Ph.D.

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Theorists have argued that the effectiveness of dialogue about equality-related public policy has been limited by a range of factors (e.g. limited representation of minority groups or dominant discourses about ‘equality’ that prevent wider discussion). This study focuses on how we might create public dialogue more in keeping with what people really value around the topic of equality. The study does this by firstly mapping English local authority approaches to engaging ethnic minorities in public policy dialogue. This is followed by a ‘qualitative experiment’ which compares the effects of two popular models of public engagement (‘multiculturalism’ and ‘interculturalism’) on participants’ experiences. The study identifies important conventions of dialogue associated with ‘representative claim-making’ that can hinder critical deliberation of equality-related public policy issues. The study also highlights particular aspects of facilitation practice which appear to improve research participants’ levels of autonomy and the breadth of equality issues discussed through public dialogue.

Type of Work: Thesis (Doctorates > Ph.D.)
Award Type: Doctorates > Ph.D.
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Social Sciences
School or Department: School of Social Policy, Department of Social Policy and Social Work
Funders: Economic and Social Research Council
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
H Social Sciences > HT Communities. Classes. Races
J Political Science > JN Political institutions (Europe) > JN101 Great Britain


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