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Devolution and Power in the United Kingdomis concerned with a paradox - why devolution has enabled different approaches to government and policy-making - develop in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland since 1999, while a close examination of the structure of devolution suggests that the UK Government retains control over most key aspects of the UK.
Presenting original research from the Leverhulme and ESRC research programmes, this book is the first comprehensive examination of intergovernmental relations in the devolved UK. With contributors from a range of disciplines including political science, law, public policy, economics, history and comparative politics, it builds a detailed picture of the UK's system of intergovernmental relations as it has developed since 1999.
It also examines how the UK's practices relate to those practised in other decentralised and federal states, and adopts a resource dependency framework to examine the impact of devolution on the territorial distribution of power in the United Kingdom. It explains the paradox of autonomy and control as a form of 'conditional autonomy', which has been possible because of the benign political circumstances that have accompanied devolution's early years - but which may not survive in rougher conditions.
Devolution's easy bedding-in has been due to good fortune more than good design. This book will be invaluable for all interested in devolution, particularly students, academics and researchers interested in British politics or comparative territorial politics, and in public law.