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Manchester Policy Blogs: Book Reviews

Policy Agendas in British Politics

How do Governments arrive at policy decisions in the United Kingdom? There has been a great deal of commentary on the apparent disconnect between Westminster and voters, with priorities not necessarily shared between the two. This book by Peter John, Anthony Bertelli, Will Jennings and Shaun Bevan, will help illuminate the reader on how these policy agendas are shaped, [...]
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Microcredit and International Development: Contexts, Achievements and Challenges

Microcredit and International Development: Contexts, Achievements and Challenges. Edited by Farhad Hossain, Christopher Rees and Tonya Knight Millar. Routledge, 2011. Microfinance services have played important roles in the development of small and medium scale enterprises, writes Dr Justice Nyigmah Bawole. This title deals with contemporary experiences in the microfinance industry – and while it omits [...]
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Health Reforms in Central and Eastern Europe: Options, obstacles, limited outcomes

Health Reforms in Central and Eastern Europe: Options, obstacles, limited outcomes, James Warner Björkman and Juraj Nemec (editors). Eleven International Publishing. June 2013. This title offers timely insight into the emerging patterns in health reforms in Central and Eastern European countries since the fall of the Berlin Wall, writes Anna Raphael. Authors present conclusions that [...]
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Nudge – Improving Decisions About Health, Wealth, and Happiness

The influential book “Nudge” (Thaler and Sunstein 2008) comes from the emerging field of behavioral economics, which investigates the non-rational ways in which people make decisions. Its policy implications are radical – it advocates what the authors call “libertarian paternalism”. This paradoxical prescription is based on the idea of ‘choice architecture’ – the notion that the way [...]
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‘Made to Stick’ – how to make your key messages memorable

This book looks at what makes ideas “stick” – why some ideas spread easily whilst others don’t. Being able to communicate effectively has become increasingly important for public managers in democratic states. “A medium-sized ‘butter’ popcorn at a typical neighborhood movie theatre contains more artery-clogging fat than a bacon-and-eggs breakfast, a Big Mac and fries lunch, and [...]
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