Public policy And Politics in India : How institution matterBy kuldeep Mathur, Oxford University Press 2013; ISBN -13: 978-0-19-9466054

Public policy is a new discourse that emerged in the early 1950s. Public policy is designed as goal oriented action to stimulate decision making. Policy mounted on law & regulations, funding management with the concern of governmental representation. It is a discipline to solve the Conflict by making policies such as education Policy, health Policy, employment policy, foreign policy, Agriculture Policy and labor policy.

Public policy developed in the context of the Indian governance scenario; is becoming more and more significant in today’s world. The importance of civil societies, non-profit organizations, and the media have a communicative role in producing policies. 

This book carved out a few questions that needed to be answered like what is the nature of this new style of governance ? How does it affect the role of the state in framing public policy? And this book also delve deep into the nature and role of these networking to determine public policy, promoting the sledgehammer research in this area of public policy.

Kuldeep Mathur, the author of this book put forward his own research essays that focus on an analysis of Indian public policies. The theme of the book also concerned the processes of policy making. Author explores the impoverished aspects of Policies in india; what was lost in the dominant theme pursued by most scholars was that policy was an arena of Contestation – of bargaining & Compromises of politics. 

Questioning the bureaucratic imperative of impersonality and neutrality inhibited an understanding of how policies were formulated and implemented.

Main Content

This book emphasizes on certain Sphere or excessive involvement of political executive, exclusiveness of politics in Policy Making. Discuss the Guidance of Governance in India, Research bases Policy Analysis and how policy research organized in the South Asian region provides the understanding for Supreme Court, Technocrats and populist Politics in india in the sphere of Policymaking, importance of policy evaluation for education Policy. 

The impact of privatization, Liberalization and public sector Enterprises in India, how governance is used as networks between state, Business, NGOs for enhancement of relationships. Development of cognitivism towards strengthening the Bureaucracy: state and  Development in India, enforces the Administrative reform in india as policy fixation and Consequences.

 Following tenets explained by author; Book explained the Policy mechanism of different Commissions, Active inputs of parliamentary Committees, Concentrate on political and Administrative Constraints. Introductory policy Analysis from planning to implementation failure.

Articulation of how formulation of policies differ in South Asia; social political environment and character of Social Science research context that shapes the characteristics of policy research organization, emergence of policy research organization in South Asia. However, South Asian Countries do not have Common model for the growth of such institutions. Below mentioned important outlining from the book.

“Initiative taken by the govt establishing research institution at the beginning of the planning period indicates recognition of the fact that research can contribute to policy making”. Policy failure were seen to be located in the bureaucratic/managerial process rather than in programme design & formulation of objectives.

“The dilemma of increased political participation within a system of limited economic benefit is the major Challenge for policymakers as india enters the second millennium”.Author underline the role of supreme Court in Policymaking; Political Contestation & govt reluctance in implementing what had already long been on the statute books and nature of environmentalist politics. 

Explored the role of various actors in shaping outcomes, the impact of education policy since independence. The significance of privatization emphasis on the virtue of the market is highlighting the weaknesses of the public sector hence the need of privatization political leadership 

promoting economic reform in india, prescribed few reforms and possible reasons for failure lead to desirability of wholesome privatization.

Consideration of the role of legislation in the making of Public Policy has been a relatively neglected area of Political environment. Articulation of Governance as networks with ngos, state & market ponderability of relationship of the state with the corporate sector is based on a transformed view of the role of the state in neo liberal economic framework.

 Also, In this book the author emphasizes strengthening of bureaucracy for ameliorate the Governance. All the following, explanatory principles in the book require the administrative Reforms; changing the intellectual climate that provides understanding of the role & scope of Public Administration propelled this discourse.


I highly recommend this book not only to those who are studying Public Policy but to all who desire to acquire knowledge regarding public policies mechanisms & approaches of Public Policy in India. The language of the book is moderate to understand, easy to absorb and grasp.

Also, This book clear the idea of policy making, social science, economic decision making, necessity of pivotal agencies gravitate our attention towards policy 

processes rather than focus on consequences. Dominant Strategy of development and the state determined development outcomes. Propounded economic reform was a response to the economic crisis and became an instrument of crisis management by the government.

Critical significant stream in the general area of policy studies which here attracted considerable attention of policy evaluation. Critical evaluations of various policies and programmes have sought to identify the factors responsible for policy failures and to suggest what the Government should have done to improve their chances of successful Policy structure. 

Policies could not achieve their objectives without bureaucratic and administrative adequate sophistication. Discussion on little attention was paid to the policies themselves and their appropriateness by Government, Policies began to be assessed in relation to plan models, sectoral relationships and the global economic context. Importance of public policies have primarily focused on the dimensions of efficiency and effectiveness. 

Policies are shaped and designed. Social scientists need to fill the gap in our comprehension of how state institutions function particularly when policy is a political statement and not a techno-rational output of State action. This book provide all kind of reasoning and perception to improve the Public Policy structure.

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