In this book Jack Brand examines the role of the British Conservative and Labour parliamentary parties in the development of government policy since 1945. Focusing on six major policy fields: agriculture, education, housing, defence, the economy, and Scottish affairs, he argues that the influence of back-benchers has been consistently underestimated, and that the close interdependence of front- and back-benchers frequently produces surprising and significant effects on policy development. Dr Brand concludes that the common perception of back-benchers as powerless to affect the policies of their leaders is misleading, and that they are essential to the development of government
Readership: Teachers and third-year and postgraduate students of political science; parliamentarians; political journalists.
Jack Brand, Senior Lecturer in Politics, University of Strathclyde
"`Brand provides a good deal of interesting material on the post-war history of policy-making in the areas he has chosen.'
Vernon Bogdanor, Times Higher Education Supplement"
"'A clearly written book, scholarly in nature, which is intended for specialists in British politics.'
M. Curtis, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, Choice, Feb '93"
"`a thorough study that does far more than bring Lynskey's 20-year-old attempt to assess the extent of backbench influence in modifying government policy up to date. It goes far beyond it, with an extensive and rigorous volume of research, informed both by a knowledge of theory and of the nuances of British parliamentary life ... clear and very readable book. It is the product of extensive and thorough research. The result is a major contribution to the study of Parliament in the United Kingdom ... It fills a notable gap in the literature and will constitute the principal work on the subject for many years to come'
"`each of the six case studies is well informed and well crafted. To his credit, Brand does not permit his thesis to drive his empirical analysis. His accounts of the policy areas are not at all tendentious ... essential reading'
British Politics Group Newsletter"
"`a lot of hard work has gone into this book, which is an important and provocative addition to the literatures on policy making and legislatures'