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Social capital and the participation of marginalized groups in government: a study of the statutory partnership between the third sector and devolved government in Wales

Chaney, Paul 2002. Social capital and the participation of marginalized groups in government: a study of the statutory partnership between the third sector and devolved government in Wales. Public Policy and Administration 17 (4) , pp. 20-38. 10.1177/095207670201700403

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Abstract

This paper outlines the initial impact that recent constitutional reform has had in reframing governance and changing the role of the third sector in Wales. In the wake of devolution it shows a civil society in transition. It examines two democratic innovations; a new and singular statutory partnership between national Welsh government and the voluntary sector, and a unique legal duty requiring that government promote equality of opportunity for all people in the exercise of its functions. Here the emerging findings of research into the prevailing levels and types of social capital are outlined as part of an evaluation of the way such reforms are being used further the political aim for a more broad-based, participatory system of governance. Attention is focussed on measures designed to engage in the work of government hitherto marginalized social groups such as women, disabled people and people from an ethnic minority background. The nature and working practices associated with new structural and procedural arrangements that include government-sponsored consultative third sector networks for ‘minority’ groups are explored. The emerging evidence presented here suggests that whilst reframing governance and state intervention may have the potential to foster top-down social capital in ways that promote activism and political participation, significant barriers remain to achieving ‘inclusive’ governance.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Social Sciences (Includes Criminology and Education)
Subjects: J Political Science > JN Political institutions (Europe) > JN101 Great Britain
Publisher: SAGE
ISSN: 0952-0767
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2017 06:18
URI: http://orca.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/58368

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