Policy Crises, Policy Entrepreneurs, and Political Entrepreneurs

… a core concept used in Policy Analysis and Process and Atlas101

Click for Hogan/Feeney article

Concept description

John Hogan and Sharon Feeney (2012, reference below and pdf on right), summarize the role of crises, policy entrepreneurs, and political entrepreneurs in policy change.

They write:

“Kingdon (1995) suggests that change agents encompass a broad grouping of what he terms “policy entrepreneurs.” When a policy is in difficulty, due to an exogenous shock for instance, windows of opportunity appear in which policy entrepreneurs challenge the existing paradigm. They present a range of new ideas to replace the ones upon which existing policy is based and in the process vie for the attention of politicians to get their ideas into the policymaking environment. Policy entrepreneurs encompass civil servants, technocrats, academics, economists and interest groups, etc. that engage in policy innovation and have some access to decision makers. …

“Political entrepreneurs are the bridge between those advocating new policy ideas (policy entrepreneurs) and the institutions implementing them. As such, political entrepreneurs, by influencing agendas, shape the terms of political debate (Hwang and Powell 2005). “Successful political entrepreneurs are able to consolidate innovations, producing political or social change that has enduring effects in the form of new programs, policies, or organizations” (Hwang and Powell 2005, 214). …

“This paper contends that, at times of exogenous shocks, policy entrepreneurs and outside influences are responsible for producing new ideas, but the political entrepreneur acts as a figurehead, introducing these ideas into the policy process. The political entrepreneur, at the head of an entrepreneurial network of policy entrepreneurs, is capable of engaging in the process of creative destruction in relation to policy.

“The relationship between policy and political entrepreneurs can be illustrated by the astronomical concept of a nebula, wherein the gravitational mechanics result in the clustering of particles to produce mass and eventually stars. Like such particles, there are always policy entrepreneurs with policy ideas, swirling around in the policy making environment. In the wake of a crisis, policy entrepreneurs vie for the attention of politicians to get their ideas into the policymaking arena. If a politician is willing to act as a political entrepreneur and champion a new idea, they can draw policy entrepreneurs and other interests to them, building a mass of support behind the policy idea they are advocating. There are advantages for each side in the relationship. The political entrepreneur benefits from the expertise of policy entrepreneurs, to say nothing of their support, while the latter benefit from the politician’s “patronage” of their idea in the corridors of power.”

See also Focusing Event, Policy Window, and Path Dependence.

Atlas topic, subject, and course

Problem Definition and Agenda Setting (core topic) in Policy Analysis and Process and Atlas101.

Source

John Hogan and Sharon Feeney (2012), Crisis and Policy Change – The Role of the Political Entrepreneur, Risk, Hazards & Crisis in Public Policy: Vol. 3: Iss. 2, Article 6. at https://arrow.dit.ie/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1128&context=buschmarart, accessed 15 December 2018. Citations noted above are:

Kingdon, John. W. 1995. Agendas, Alternatives, and Public Policy. 2nd ed. New York, NY: Harper.

Hwang, Hokyu, and Walter Powell. 2005. “Institutions and Entrepreneurship.” In Handbook of Entrepreneurship Research: Disciplinary Perspectives, eds. Sharon A. Alvarez, Rajshree R. Agarwal and Olav Sorenson. New York, NY: Springer, 201–232.

Page created by: Ian Clark, last modified on 11 December 2018.

Image: John Hogan and Sharon Feeney (2012), Crisis and Policy Change – The Role of the Political Entrepreneur, Risk, Hazards & Crisis in Public Policy: Vol. 3: Iss. 2, Article 6. at https://arrow.dit.ie/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1128&context=buschmarart, accessed 15 December 2018.