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Governing Britain

Governing Britain

Patrick Diamond

14 February 2014


Power, Politics & the Prime Minister

New Policy Network book by Patrick Diamond, published by I.B Tauris

According to Moisés Naím, political power in the modern world is harder to use, but easier to lose. The practice of governance has become increasingly challenging in an age of complexity where problems of technocracy, trust in representative politics, depoliticisation and populism are posing serious questions about the future of our political institutions. Against this backdrop Policy Network here launch a major new book entitled Governing Britain: Power, Politics & the Prime Minister.

Drawing on an unprecedented level of access and wide-ranging interviews with former ministers, senior civil servants and political advisers, author Patrick Diamond examines the administrative and political machinery serving the Prime Minister.

By examining the ideological beliefs underpinning the policy-making process and considering the importance of the British Political Tradition in shaping the institutions and practices of statecraft, this book analyses the contemporary realities of government and democracy, making important reform proposals about Britain's future machinery of government.

About the author:
Patrick Diamond
is Vice-Chair of Policy Network. He is a Lecturer in Public Policy at Queen Mary, University of London and Gwilym Gibbon Fellow at Nuffield College, Oxford. He was formerly Head of Policy Planning in 10 Downing Street and Senior Policy Adviser to the Prime Minister..


From the book cover:

'This is an excellent account of New Labour’s governing philosophy. Patrick Diamond’s 'four phases of governance reform' are especially insightful in understanding New Labour’s management of the state and public services. He rightly highlights deep continuities in respect of England’s tradition of centralised politics and policy making, while acknowledging the variations on that theme.'
Andrew Adonis, Labour peer and former member of the No. 10 Policy Unit

'Patrick Diamond’s informed and perceptive study of changes in the pattern of government under New Labour raises big questions now in the coalition era about the traditional, and enduring, centralist Whitehall model, and about adapting ministerial/civil service relations. He is right that we may be witnessing only an initial phase in the reconstruction of the British state.'
Peter Riddell, Director of the Institute for Government

'Patrick Diamond has provided a groundbreaking book. Through detailed research with the key actors, he has provided a sophisticated understanding of how government worked in the Blair and Brown administrations. His analysis undermines many of the myths of the era and provide an incisive insight into how government really works.'
Martin Smith, Professor of Politics, University of York

From the media:

Reviews: Governing Britain - Power, Politics and the Prime Minister
The House Magazine, 16th May 2014

The book is published by I.B Tauris and can be purchased here.

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