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School of Politics and International Relations

POL396 British Economic and Social Policy Since 1945: Ideas, Interests and Institutions

(POL396B - Spring)

Level: 6

Semester: A

Credit Value: 15

Module Convenor: Dr Patrick Diamond

Overlap: None

Pre-requisite: None

Compulsory for: None

Associate Availability: Full year and Autumn only


This module will focus on the process of policy-making in Britain since 1945, while addressing the substantive content of key economic and social policies enacted since the Second World War. Particular attention will be paid to the role of ideas, the intellectual and ideological rationale that has been used to justify distinctive policies, and the broader context created by state, society and economy. The course will begin by analysing the relationship between ideas, interests and institutions in the British policy-making process, establishing a theoretical and conceptual approach drawing on comparative analyses and frameworks. The course will then proceed to examine a series of key topics and themes in post-war economic and social policy.

Assessment: 1 x 1500 word report (25%), 2 hour exam (75%)(autumn only associates: 1 x 1500 word report (35%) and 1 x 2000 word essay (65%)