The Social Policy Process

  • Keith G. Banting
Part of the Studies in Policy-Making book series (STPM)


The 1960s saw the British social policy debate transformed. The assumptions of the 1950s were swept aside, and poverty and inequality were reinstated as critical social issues. While the rediscovery of poverty did not come as a sudden blinding revelation, one dimension of hardship after another was thrust firmly into political consciousness, and the cumulative impact on the social policy agenda was very great. This change did not flow from any sudden shift in the structure of British life; perceptions of income trends changed dramatically while the actual distribution of income remained broadly stable. Nor was the change imposed on politicians by pressures from below; the poor remained unassertive themselves, and were undefended by well-organised allies. Rather, the rediscovery of poverty and the policy response to it were the products of the internal dynamics of the social policy process.


Social Policy Civil Service Policy Innovation Income Transfer Family Poverty 
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Copyright information

© Keith G. Banting 1979

Authors and Affiliations

  • Keith G. Banting
    • 1
  1. 1.University of British ColumbiaVancouverCanada

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