Devolution and Localism in England by David M. Smith, Enid Wistrich

By David M. Smith, Enid Wistrich

Combining historic and coverage learn with empirical examine from a qualitative examine of nearby elites this e-book deals an unique and well timed perception into the growth of devolution of governance in England. With specific curiosity in how governments have attempted and proceed to interact English humans in sub-national democratic procedures whereas facing the realities of governance it makes use of in-depth interviews with key figures from 3 English areas to get the 'inside view' of ways those tactics are noticeable by means of the local and native political, administrative, company and voluntary region elites who've to make regulations paintings in perform. Tracing the advance of decentralisation guidelines via nearby regulations as much as and together with the final election in 2010 and the unconventional shift clear of regionalism to localism by way of the recent Coalition executive thereafter the authors glance intimately at many of the key rules of the incumbent Coalition executive corresponding to urban areas and Localism and their implementation. ultimately they give thought to the results of the prevailing scenario and speculate on attainable concerns for the longer term.

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Two tier levels of local government is a waste of time and money. They are inefficient and turn people off. Unitary authorities are the future’ (Regional Administrator). Even then, current unitary authorities were seen by some to be too small. Rather than base them on current county boundaries, it was argued, base them on ‘logical areas of half a million people and relate [them] to areas in which people operate – where they work and travel to and from work’ (Regional Administrator). The present structure of regional government was also seen to be far too topdown and so not conducive to the recognition of regional and local opinions.

While dual identity remains the norm, the English element is strengthening. 32 Devolution and Localism in England Do the People want Regional Governance? At the same time, the IPPR argues that UK government is biased within England itself. Even in London a majority of voters believe that UK government favours London and the South East over other English regions. 14). The English regions have in practice varied widely in their nature, history and structure. Indeed, the main reason for the first regional assembly referendum vote being held in the North East region was precisely because it was believed that there was a sense of regional identity there.

However, even it reported that in seven of the ten regions, the figures show that a greater proportion of the population supported the idea of regional government than openly opposed it. Of course, results from opinion polls vary, and a subsequent poll conducted by ICM Research Ltd. , and support for regional assemblies declined even further subsequently (Curtice, 2006). Do Regional or Sub-regional Identities Exist? Regional, or perhaps more accurately, sub-regional identities did appear to exist in the past, although covering smaller areas than the modern administrative regions (Jones and Woolf, 2007).

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