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Fast Policy

Experimental Statecraft at the Thresholds of Neoliberalism

2015
Authors:

Jamie Peck and Nik Theodore

Fast Policy

The first systematic analysis of global policy mobility across two fast-changing policy fields

We inhabit a perpetually accelerating and increasingly interconnected world, with new ideas, fads, and fashions moving at social-media speed. New policy ideas, especially “ideas that work,” are now able to find not only a worldwide audience but also transnational salience in remarkably short order. Based on fieldwork conducted across six continents and in fifteen countries, Fast Policy is the first systematic treatment of this phenomenon.

Drawing on theory and cases, the authors present slowly matured, insightful, and agenda-setting scholarship on the accelerated development, fast cross-border transfer, and quick implementation of welfare and labor market policies.

Bob Jessop, Lancaster University, UK

We inhabit a perpetually accelerating and increasingly interconnected world, with new ideas, fads, and fashions moving at social-media speed. New policy ideas, especially “ideas that work,” are now able to find not only a worldwide audience but also transnational salience in remarkably short order.

Fast Policy is the first systematic treatment of this phenomenon, one that compares processes of policy development across two rapidly moving fields that emerged in the Global South and have quickly been adopted worldwide⎯conditional cash transfers (a social policy program that conditions payments on behavioral compliance) and participatory budgeting (a form of citizen-centric urban governance). Jamie Peck and Nik Theodore critically analyze the growing transnational connectivity between policymaking arenas and modes of policy development, assessing the implications of these developments for contemporary policymaking. Emphasizing that policy models do not simply travel intact from sites of invention to sites of emulation, they problematize fast policy as being real and consequential yet prone to misrepresentation.

Based on fieldwork conducted across six continents and in fifteen countries, Fast Policy is an essential resource in providing an extended theoretical discussion of policy mobility and in presenting a methodology for ethnographic research on global social policy.

Fast Policy

Jamie Peck is Canada Research Chair in urban and regional political economy and professor of geography at the University of British Columbia. He is the managing editor of Environment & Planning A.


Nik Theodore is professor of urban planning and policy at the University of Illinois at Chicago and associate dean for faculty affairs and research in the College of Urban Planning and Public Affairs. He is the managing editor of Antipode: A Radical Journal of Geography.

Fast Policy

Drawing on theory and cases, the authors present slowly matured, insightful, and agenda-setting scholarship on the accelerated development, fast cross-border transfer, and quick implementation of welfare and labor market policies.

Bob Jessop, Lancaster University, UK

Fast Policy is a publication full of methodological innovations, a fruitful dialogue between in-depth case study research and theory formulation, and the valiant act of discussing important substantive questions across the boundaries of various disciplines.

Journal of Economic Geography

A compelling landmark study in the heretofore insufficiently researched domain of policy transfer analysis. Moreover, it is written in a colorful, thoroughly engaging style, rare for a book on public policy.

CHOICE

Fast Policy

Contents

Preface and Acknowledgments
Abbreviations
Introduction: Policies without Borders
Part I. In Pursuit of Fast Policy
1. Geographies of Policy
2. Reflections: Pursuing Projects, Following Policies
Part II. Social Policy as Practical Science
3. New Ideas for New York City
4. Globalizing Social-Policy Expertise
5. Reflections: Tailwinds, Turning Points
Part III. Propagating Progressive Practice
6. Porto Alegre as Participatory Laboratory
7. Democracy on the Move
8. Reflections: Headwinds, Hollowing Out
Conclusion: Exploring (Fast) Policy Worlds
Notes
Bibliography
Index