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Policy stretching and institutional layering: British food policy between security, safety, quality, health and climate change

Feindt, Peter H. and Flynn, Andrew Colin 2009. Policy stretching and institutional layering: British food policy between security, safety, quality, health and climate change. British Politics 4 (3) , pp. 386-414. 10.1057/bp.2009.13

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Abstract

Food policy has been a key part of the British welfare state. Since the post-war period it has undergone enormous ideational and institutional change, mostly through periods of crisis. However, from a historical institutionalist perspective it is conspicuous that the establishment of new policies and institutions has not been complemented by the elimination of old ones. Therefore, while policy learning in response to policy failure has been important, paradigm shift does not fit well as an explanatory model. Rather, British food policy has evolved through processes of ideational and institutional stretching and layering. Concerns about food supply and high productivity have been overlaid with policies addressing food safety, the environment, quality foods, obesity and climate change. As a result, food is increasingly situated in multiple orders. These reside both in the political system and the food system, creating a hybrid institutional context. The resulting tensions in turn create opportunities for more new ideas and actors to move in, fuelled by a plurality of social constructions of food. Also, each new layer re-adjusts the power balance and necessitates re-interpretations of older policies.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Geography and Planning
Subjects: S Agriculture > S Agriculture (General)
T Technology > TX Home economics
Uncontrolled Keywords: Food policy ; Policy change ; Multi-level governance ; Policy paradigm ; Institutional change ; Policy layering
Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
ISSN: 1746-918X
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2017 02:11
URI: http://orca.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/10611

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