Events and Opportunities

Call for papers – APSA 2022, Montreal

We are looking forward to American Political Science Association’s Annual Meeting & Exhibition, September 15-18, 2022 (in person) in beautiful Montreal, Québec, Canada! Our theme for 2022:

Critical Policy Analysis in and for Tumultuous Times

The last decade has been a period of radical disruption in politics and policymaking. This sense of disruption has culminated most spectacularly in the COVID pandemic but includes also upheaval associated with rising nativism and populism across the globe, accelerating inequality in many advanced capitalist societies, the looming climate emergency facing the world, and beyond. This panel offers an opportunity to reflect on what critical policy analysis has to offer in tumultuous times. The most influential works in this tradition have typically focused on unsettling taken-for-granted norms in politics and policy, and revealing hidden struggles beneath seemingly routine practices. But what insight do these traditions and approaches have in a context of rapidly changing norms and growing public contestation and polarisation? The classics in critical policy analysis have also used interpretive and ethnographic methods that generally rely on a stable foundation of trust and rapport with policymakers, professionals and practitioners, and everyday service users and citizens. But how do these tools and techniques translate to a context of unpredictable disruption and upheaval, isolation and fragmentation?

The panel welcomes a diverse range of perspectives. We mean this not just in terms of diversity in participants, but diversity in approach to these issues and questions. In this sense, papers might offer conceptual reflections on the state of critical policy analysis and its aptness for tumultuous times. They might offer empirically grounded case studies that demonstrate the utility of critical policy analysis in addressing the urgent real-world problems and rapid transformations we are witnessing today. Or they might offer methodological accounts that rethink how to do critical policy analysis in a post-pandemic context.

We are looking forward to individual submissions (papers) and whole panels. Submission Deadline: January 18, 2022 at 11:59 p.m. Pacific 

To submit, follow this link.

For any questions or comments, please contact Marta Wojciechowska (marta.1.wojciechowska@kcl.ac.uk) or John Boswell (J.C.Boswell@soton.ac.uk).

Past events:

Critical Policy Studies related group hosted a panel on ‘Critical approaches to the study of the crisis in politics and policymaking’ during APSA 2021 Annual Meeting.

Contemporary politics and public policy seem to be moving from one crisis to another. In policy terms, better-studied crises, like the climate emergency or increasing economic inequality, have recently been joined by sudden challenges to public health and economic security brought by the COVID-19 pandemic. In procedural terms, a long-present crisis of depoliticisation and exclusion in democratic politics has been overshadowed by the crisis presented by radical right-wing populism and an increasingly toxic public sphere. Papers in this panel consider how critical policy studies can aid our understandings of crisis in contemporary politics and public policy. Among other possibilities, we welcome submissions that draw on the diverse conceptual and methodological tools of critical policy analysis to understand how powerful actors construct crises; that illustrate how marginalised groups are mobilising in the face of surfacing crises; or that analyse how to promote tools of dialogue, inclusion and reflection to address the multi-faceted challenges contemporary democracies face.

The panel featured papers by:

  • Rikki Dean, Goethe University Frankfurt
  • Oscar Leonard Larsson, Swedish Defence University
  • Alexandria Innes, City University of London

Comments were provided a member of our Leadership Collective, Genevieve Fuji Johnson.

On the 19th of May 2021, we held a small, closed workshop in which early career scholars from all over the world shared, read and reviewed feedback on their work in progress.

Participants received feedback and suggestions on how develop their work from:

  • John Parkinson, Professor of Social & Political Philosophy in the Department of Philosophy, Maastricht University
  • Hendrik Wagenaar, Senior Academic Advisor at the International School for Government at King’s College London, and Adjunct Professor at the Institute for Governance and Policy Analysis at the University of Canberra, and a member of our Advisory Board
  • Michael Orsini, Professor at the Institute of Feminist and Gender Studies, University of Ottawa. Also a member of our Advisory Board

The event has been chaired by John Boswell (Southampton). Similar events will follow!

Critical Policy Studies APSA group and Theoretical Perspectives in Policy Analysis ECPR section held a roundtable with journal editors on publishing critical and interpretive policy research on 25th November 2020. The discussion focused on essential steps and tips on how to effectively publish interpretive and critical policy research in leading academic outlets.

Confirmed speakers included:

  • Jennifer Dodge, Associate Professor at the Department of Public Administration and Policy at University at Albany, SUNY and Co-Editor of Critical Policy Studies
  • Peter H. Feindt, Professor of Agricultural and Food Policy at the Albrecht Daniel Thaer Institute for Agricultural and Horticultural Sciences at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin and Co-Editor of the Journal of Environmental Policy and Planning
  • Chris Weible, Professor at University of Colorado Denver School of Public Affairs, former Editor of Policy Studies Journal, and Co-Editor of Policy and Politics from 2021

The event has been chaired by John Boswell (Southampton) and Marta Wojciechowska (King’s College London).