Policy Making in Northern Ireland: Ignoring the Evidence

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    10 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    The public policy making process in Northern Ireland during the period of direct rule from Westminster (1972-1999) was dominated by senior civil servants working for busy British ministers preoccupied with wider constitutional and security issues. The recent return to devolved government after its fitful start has ushered in a new era of policy making informed to a much greater extent by evidence gathering. This paper considers a significant policy issue, the Review of Public Administration in Northern Ireland, as a means of examining how policy making is influenced by macro political factors aimed at stabilising the power sharing Executive.
    LanguageEnglish
    Pages343-359
    JournalPolicy & Politics
    Volume36
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - 2008

    Fingerprint

    policy making
    civil servant
    political factors
    public administration
    minister
    evidence
    public policy

    Keywords

    • Evidence based policy
    • review of public administration
    • Northern Ireland
    • and public sector reforms.

    Cite this

    @article{42b12b84e6ce4ce2aaa1f8655e601ace,
    title = "Policy Making in Northern Ireland: Ignoring the Evidence",
    abstract = "The public policy making process in Northern Ireland during the period of direct rule from Westminster (1972-1999) was dominated by senior civil servants working for busy British ministers preoccupied with wider constitutional and security issues. The recent return to devolved government after its fitful start has ushered in a new era of policy making informed to a much greater extent by evidence gathering. This paper considers a significant policy issue, the Review of Public Administration in Northern Ireland, as a means of examining how policy making is influenced by macro political factors aimed at stabilising the power sharing Executive.",
    keywords = "Evidence based policy, review of public administration, Northern Ireland, and public sector reforms.",
    author = "Colin Knox",
    note = "Reference text: Birrell, D. and Murie, M. (1980) Policy and Government in Northern Ireland: Lessons of Devolution. Dublin: Gill and Macmillan. Bulmer, M. Coates, E. and Dominian, L. (2007) ‘Evidence-based policy making’ in H. Bochel and S. Duncan (eds.) Making Policy in Theory and Practice: 87- 104. Bristol: The Policy Press. Campbell, S., Benita, S., Coates, E., Davies, P. and Penn, G. (2007) Analysis for Policy: evidence-based policy in practice. HM. Treasury: Government Social Research Unit. Dunn, J. (2000) The Cunning of Unreason. Making Sense of Politics. London: Harper Collins. Durkan, M. (2002) ‘Review of Public Administration’, Hansard: Northern Ireland Assembly, 22nd June. Frawley, T. (2005) ‘Review of Public Administration’, Hansard: Northern Ireland Affairs Committee, 29th November. Hain, P. (2005) Statement by the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland on the Outcome of the Review of Public Administration, 25th November. Belfast: Northern Ireland Office. Hay, W. (2006) ‘Review of Public Administration’, Hansard: Northern Ireland Assembly, 5th December. Knox, C. (1999) Northern Ireland: At the cross-roads of political and administrative reform, Governance, 12, 3: 311-328 Knox, C. and Carmichael, P. (2005) ‘Improving Public Services: Public Administration Reform in Northern Ireland’ Journal of Social Policy 35, 1: 97 – 120. Macrory Report (1970) Review Body on Local Government in Northern Ireland. Belfast: HMSO Cmd. 546. McConnell, G. (2005) ‘Review of Public Administration’, Hansard: Northern Ireland Affairs Committee, 29th November. McGimpsey, M. (2007) ‘Minister shelves plan for single health board’ Belfast Telegraph, 7th July, page 1. McGrillen, J. (2007) ‘Speaking up for Local Government’ Agenda NI. Issue 9: July/August, 52 – 53. Northern Ireland Executive (2002) Draft Programme for Government. Belfast: Office of the First Minister and Deputy First Minister. Northern Ireland Local Government Association (2007) ‘Local Government criticises proposals for Councils’. Belfast: NILGA. Northern Ireland Office (2006) Better Government for Northern Ireland: Final Decisions of the Review of Public Administration. Belfast: Northern Ireland Office. Nutley, S. (2007) ‘Using evidence – where have we got to and how do we go forward’ Public Management and Policy Association Review No. 38 – September. Nutley, S.M., Walter, I. and Davies, H.T. (2007) Using Evidence: How Research Can Inform Public Services. Bristol: The Policy Press. O’Dowd, L., Rolston, B. and Tomlinson, M. (1980) Northern Ireland: Between Civil Rights and Civil War. London: CSE Books. Office of the First Minister and Deputy First Minister (2004) Northern Ireland Priorities and Budget 2004-06. Belfast: OFMDFM. Office of the First Minister and Deputy First Minister (2005) A Shared Future: Policy and Strategic Framework for Good Relations in Northern Ireland. Belfast: Office of the First Minister and Deputy First Minister. Office of the First Minister and Deputy First Minister (2007) Developing and Analysing the Evidence Base – Workbook Two. Belfast: Northern Ireland Policy and Innovation Unit. Paisley, I. (2002) ‘Review of Public Administration’, Hansard: Northern Ireland Assembly 25th February. Pearson, I. (2003) Foreword: The Review of Public Administration in Northern Ireland (2003). Belfast: Review of Public Administration. Pearson, I. (2004) ‘Minister Moves Forward on Review of Public Administration’. News Release. Belfast: Office of the First Minister and Deputy First Minister. Rooker, J. (2005) Reform of Local Government: Outcome of the Review of Public Administration, 22nd November. Belfast: Northern Ireland Office. Ruane, C. (2007) Minister of Education – Letter to Department of Education Staff, 19th July. Bangor: Department of Education. The Review of Public Administration in Northern Ireland (2003). Belfast: Review of Public Administration. The Review of Public Administration (2004) Pre-Consultation Process: What we heard. Belfast: RPA (accessed at http://www.rpani.gov.uk/subsidiarity/preconsult.htm ). The Review of Public Administration in Northern Ireland: Further Consultation (2005). Belfast: Review of Public Administration. The Review of Public Administration (2005) Analysis of Responses to ‘Further Consultation’. Belfast: Review of Public Administration. Trimble, D. (2002) The Review of Public Administration. Hansard: 25th February. Walker, D. (2007) ‘Is evidence for policy good for democracy?’ Public Money and Management 27 (4): 235-237. Wilson, R. (2001) ‘The Executive Committee’ in R. Wilson (ed.) A Guide to the Northern Ireland Assembly: Agreeing to Disagree? Belfast: The Stationery Office. Wilson, S. (2002) ‘Review of Public Administration’, Hansard: Northern Ireland Assembly 25th February. Young, K., Ashby, D., Boaz, A. and Grayson, L. (2002) ‘Social science and the evidence-based policy movement’, Social Policy and Society 1 (3): 215 – 224.",
    year = "2008",
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    Policy Making in Northern Ireland: Ignoring the Evidence. / Knox, Colin.

    In: Policy & Politics, Vol. 36, No. 3, 2008, p. 343-359.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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    T1 - Policy Making in Northern Ireland: Ignoring the Evidence

    AU - Knox, Colin

    N1 - Reference text: Birrell, D. and Murie, M. (1980) Policy and Government in Northern Ireland: Lessons of Devolution. Dublin: Gill and Macmillan. Bulmer, M. Coates, E. and Dominian, L. (2007) ‘Evidence-based policy making’ in H. Bochel and S. Duncan (eds.) Making Policy in Theory and Practice: 87- 104. Bristol: The Policy Press. Campbell, S., Benita, S., Coates, E., Davies, P. and Penn, G. (2007) Analysis for Policy: evidence-based policy in practice. HM. Treasury: Government Social Research Unit. Dunn, J. (2000) The Cunning of Unreason. Making Sense of Politics. London: Harper Collins. Durkan, M. (2002) ‘Review of Public Administration’, Hansard: Northern Ireland Assembly, 22nd June. Frawley, T. (2005) ‘Review of Public Administration’, Hansard: Northern Ireland Affairs Committee, 29th November. Hain, P. (2005) Statement by the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland on the Outcome of the Review of Public Administration, 25th November. Belfast: Northern Ireland Office. Hay, W. (2006) ‘Review of Public Administration’, Hansard: Northern Ireland Assembly, 5th December. Knox, C. (1999) Northern Ireland: At the cross-roads of political and administrative reform, Governance, 12, 3: 311-328 Knox, C. and Carmichael, P. (2005) ‘Improving Public Services: Public Administration Reform in Northern Ireland’ Journal of Social Policy 35, 1: 97 – 120. Macrory Report (1970) Review Body on Local Government in Northern Ireland. Belfast: HMSO Cmd. 546. McConnell, G. (2005) ‘Review of Public Administration’, Hansard: Northern Ireland Affairs Committee, 29th November. McGimpsey, M. (2007) ‘Minister shelves plan for single health board’ Belfast Telegraph, 7th July, page 1. McGrillen, J. (2007) ‘Speaking up for Local Government’ Agenda NI. Issue 9: July/August, 52 – 53. Northern Ireland Executive (2002) Draft Programme for Government. Belfast: Office of the First Minister and Deputy First Minister. Northern Ireland Local Government Association (2007) ‘Local Government criticises proposals for Councils’. Belfast: NILGA. Northern Ireland Office (2006) Better Government for Northern Ireland: Final Decisions of the Review of Public Administration. Belfast: Northern Ireland Office. Nutley, S. (2007) ‘Using evidence – where have we got to and how do we go forward’ Public Management and Policy Association Review No. 38 – September. Nutley, S.M., Walter, I. and Davies, H.T. (2007) Using Evidence: How Research Can Inform Public Services. Bristol: The Policy Press. O’Dowd, L., Rolston, B. and Tomlinson, M. (1980) Northern Ireland: Between Civil Rights and Civil War. London: CSE Books. Office of the First Minister and Deputy First Minister (2004) Northern Ireland Priorities and Budget 2004-06. Belfast: OFMDFM. Office of the First Minister and Deputy First Minister (2005) A Shared Future: Policy and Strategic Framework for Good Relations in Northern Ireland. Belfast: Office of the First Minister and Deputy First Minister. Office of the First Minister and Deputy First Minister (2007) Developing and Analysing the Evidence Base – Workbook Two. Belfast: Northern Ireland Policy and Innovation Unit. Paisley, I. (2002) ‘Review of Public Administration’, Hansard: Northern Ireland Assembly 25th February. Pearson, I. (2003) Foreword: The Review of Public Administration in Northern Ireland (2003). Belfast: Review of Public Administration. Pearson, I. (2004) ‘Minister Moves Forward on Review of Public Administration’. News Release. Belfast: Office of the First Minister and Deputy First Minister. Rooker, J. (2005) Reform of Local Government: Outcome of the Review of Public Administration, 22nd November. Belfast: Northern Ireland Office. Ruane, C. (2007) Minister of Education – Letter to Department of Education Staff, 19th July. Bangor: Department of Education. The Review of Public Administration in Northern Ireland (2003). Belfast: Review of Public Administration. The Review of Public Administration (2004) Pre-Consultation Process: What we heard. Belfast: RPA (accessed at http://www.rpani.gov.uk/subsidiarity/preconsult.htm ). The Review of Public Administration in Northern Ireland: Further Consultation (2005). Belfast: Review of Public Administration. The Review of Public Administration (2005) Analysis of Responses to ‘Further Consultation’. Belfast: Review of Public Administration. Trimble, D. (2002) The Review of Public Administration. Hansard: 25th February. Walker, D. (2007) ‘Is evidence for policy good for democracy?’ Public Money and Management 27 (4): 235-237. Wilson, R. (2001) ‘The Executive Committee’ in R. Wilson (ed.) A Guide to the Northern Ireland Assembly: Agreeing to Disagree? Belfast: The Stationery Office. Wilson, S. (2002) ‘Review of Public Administration’, Hansard: Northern Ireland Assembly 25th February. Young, K., Ashby, D., Boaz, A. and Grayson, L. (2002) ‘Social science and the evidence-based policy movement’, Social Policy and Society 1 (3): 215 – 224.

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