Stoker, Gerry 1955-
Stoker, Gerry 1955-
Office—University of Southampton, University Rd., Southampton SO17 1BJ, England. E-mail—[email protected]
Held teaching positions in England at Strathclyde, Essex, and Birmingham, as well as at Leicester Polytechnic and the University of Southampton School of Social Sciences; Manchester University, Manchester, England, professor, 2000—. Program director of the Local Governance Programme research project, 1992-97; New Local Government Network, founding chair, now trustee member; member of the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister/Local Government Association Balance of Funding Review; advisor to the government of the United Kingdom and the Council of Europe on local government and participation issues. Speaker at conferences.
Professorial Fellowship, ESRC, 2004-2007; Political Studies Association of the United Kingdom, award for "making a difference," 2004; prize for best politics book of the year, Political Studies Association (United Kingdom), 2006, for Why Politics Matters.
The Politics of Local Government, Macmillan (London, England), 1988, 2nd edition, 1991.
(Editor, with J. Stewart, and contributor) The Future of Local Government, Macmillan (London, England), 1989.
(With T. Brindley and Y. Rydin) Remaking Planning: The Politics of Urban Change in the Thatcher Years, Unwin Hyman (Boston, MA), 1989, 2nd edition, Routledge (London, England), 1996.
(Editor, with R. Batley, and contributor) Local Government in Europe: Trends and Development, St. Martin's Press (New York, NY), 1991.
(With S. Young) Cities in the 1990s, Longman (Harlow, England), 1993.
(With S. Leach, D. Wilson, and C. Game) Local Government in the United Kingdom, Macmillan (London, England), 1994.
(Editor, with J. Stewart) Local Government in the 1990s, Macmillan (London, England), 1995.
(Editor, with D. Marsh) Theory and Methods in Political Science, St. Martin's Press (New York, NY), 1995, 2nd edition, Palgrave Macmillan (Basingstoke, England), 2002.
(Editor, with D. Lorrain, and contributor) La Privatisation Des Services Urbains En Europe, Editions La Découverte (Paris, France), 1995, translation published as The Privatisation of Urban Services in Europe, Pinter (New York, NY), 1997.
(Editor, with D. Judge and H. Wolman, and contributor) Theories of Urban Politics, Sage Publications (Thousand Oaks, CA), 1995.
(Editor, with D. King) Rethinking Local Democracy, Macmillan/Economic & Social Research Council Local Programme (Basingstoke, England), 1996.
More Than the Flower Show: Elected Mayors and Democracy, Fabian Society (London, England), 1997.
(Editor) The New Management of British Local Governance, St. Martin's Press (New York, NY), 1999.
Proportional Representation and Local Government: Lessons from Europe, York Publishing Services (Layerthorpe, York, England), 2000.
The New Politics of British Local Governance, St. Martin's Press (New York, NY), 2000.
(With W. Miller and M. Dickson) Models of Local Governance: Public Opinion and Political Theory in Britain, St. Martin's Press (New York, NY), 2000.
A New Account? Choices in Local Government Finance, Joseph Rowntree Foundation, 2001.
(With Perri 6, D. Leat, and K. Setzler) Holistic Governance, Palgrave (Basingstoke, England), 2002.
(With Roy Aldridge) Advancing a New Public Service Ethos, New Local Government Network (London, England), 2002.
Money Talks: Creating a Dialogue between Taxpayers and Local Government, New Local Government Network (London, England), 2002.
Council Tax Consultation: Guidelines for Local Authorities, Office of Deputy Prime Minister (London, England), 2002.
Transforming Local Governance: From Thatcherism to New Labour, Palgrave Macmillan (New York, NY), 2004.
(Editor, with D. Wilson, and contributor) British Local Government into the 21st Century, Palgrave Macmillan (New York, NY), 2004.
Why Politics Matters: Making Democracy Work, Palgrave Macmillan (New York, NY), 2006.
(Editor, with T. Brannan and P. John, and contributor) Re-Energizing Citizenship: Strategies for Civil Renewal, Palgrave Macmillan (New York, NY), 2007.
(With Vasudha Chhotray) Governance Theory and Practice: A Cross-Disciplinary Approach, Palgrave Macmillan (New York, NY), 2008.
Author of numerous pamphlets and papers, including The Role and Purpose of Government, New Labour's Strategy for Reforming Local and Devolved Public Institutions in Britain: Incoherence with a Purpose, Department of Government, University of Manchester (Manchester, England); Regionalism: Summary, Local Government Training Board, 1996; Will Government Ever Get Joined-Up?, Goldsmiths College (London, England), 2001; Towards a New Localism: A Discussion Paper, New Local Government Network, 2000; What Is Local Government For?, and Local Government You Are the Weakest Link: Goodbye.
Contributor to books, including Politics and Policy-Making in Britain, edited by L. Robins, Longmans (London, England), 1987; Housing Markets and Policies under Fiscal Austerity, edited by W. Van Vliet, Greenwood (New York, NY), 1987; Challenges to Local Government, edited by D. King and J. Pierre, Sage/ECPR (London, England), 1990; and The Oxford Handbook of Political Institutions, edited by R. Rhodes and others, Oxford University Press, 2006. Contributor to professional journals, including Economic Development Quarterly, Public Administration, Urban Affairs Quarterly, and International Social Science Journal. Coeditor of two book series, "Government beyond the Centre" and "Political Analysis," both published by Palgrave. Member of editorial board, Political Studies and British Journal of Politics and International Relations.
Gerry Stoker is a professor whose main interests include local and regional governance, urban politics, democratic politics, and issues related to public participation in politics and public service reform. He first established his reputation in the field of urban politics and local government, and continues to be considered an authority in that area. He was the founding chair of the New Local Government Network, a "think tank" devoted to issues related to local government. In 2006, his book Why Politics Matters: Making Democracy Work was recognized as the political book of the year by the Political Studies Association of the United Kingdom. Stoker has acted as advisor and researcher for various government studies, including a five-year evaluation of reforms introduced into local government in the United Kingdom in 2000. His concern with the need to effectively involve citizens in government was seen once again in his 2007 publication Re-Energizing Citizenship: Strategies for Civil Renewal. In it, Stoker and other contributors advise trying various methods to discover what works best in involving people with the processes of their government.
Theories of Urban Politics, published in 1996, was described as "an ambitious and successful attempt to survey the major theoretical landscape that underlies the field of urban studies," stated Barbara Ferman in the American Political Science Review. The scholars who contributed to this volume were asked to analyze and critique the field of urban studies, focusing on theories or urban power, analyses of how urban politics work, the relationship between government and those it serves, and the economic and social implications of urban politics. Ferman commented that "the real contribution of the book lies in its bringing together various major theories in urban politics and subjecting them to the critical analysis of some of the leading scholars in the field. Those interested in theoretical developments in urban politics should not miss this book."
Stoker is the editor of The New Politics of British Local Governance and The New Management of British Local Governance, both published in 1999. In them, Stoker looks at the development of a new style of goverence in Britain, one which utilizes an array of private and public solutions and people, rather than the typical system of politicians and government employees working within established structures and organizations. According to James Oliver in a review for West European Politics, the books, which are part of the "Government beyond the Centre" series, utilize a great deal of research from the ESRC Local Governance Programme. The themes covered are more diversified than the title of the series might suggest. Leadership, regime theory, and political leadership in Britain and France, are just some of the themes covered within The New Politics of British Local Governance. Oliver commented in his review: "There is much of interest contained in the collection."
Stoker is the author of numerous pamphlets and government papers on various subjects, mostly those having to do with the function of government. In one pamphlet, titled What Is Local Government For?, Stoker proposes that local governments in Great Britain should give up most of their control and funding responsibilities regarding social services. He led a government-commissioned study of significant reforms made to local constitutions in Great Britain in 2000, and in What Is Local Government For? he advises that local bodies of government should take on the responsibilities of economic development, transportation, safety, and environmental concerns, while social care should fall under the jurisdiction of national agencies.
In his book Why Politics Matters, Stoker provides "a lively and provocative contribution to recent commentary about the declining interest in politics in western democracies," stated Anthony Moran in Arena Magazine. In the book, the author considers the paradox inherent in the fact that while democracy is widely applauded, there is also a widespread lack of interest and trust in the democratic process and its leaders, and boredom and disappointment with democratic politics are also common phenomena in places where democracy is the established system. This lack of interest is demonstrated by a declining rate of participation in elections, not only in the United States but also in Europe, Australia, Africa, Asia, and elsewhere around the world. In Stoker's view, falling interest in the democratic process can be traced to the very success of the democratic system. Because it is based on compromise, it is messy and complex, and produces losers as well as winners. Special-interest groups and professional politicians have further distanced most of the ordinary citizens in the country from the political process. He believes that people will become more actively involved in politics when the issues at stake are perceived by people as truly important. He warns that if disenchantment with the democratic process continues and becomes entrenched, support will lessen for it, and the door will then be open for authoritarian systems to take the place of democracy.
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
American Political Science Review, June 1, 1996, Barbara Ferman, review of Theories of Urban Politics, p. 433.
Arena Magazine, February 1, 2007, "Anthony Moran on the Decline of Democratic Participation."
Choice: Current Reviews for Academic Libraries, April 1, 1996, E.T. Jones, review of Theories of Urban Politics, p. 1389.
Community Care, March 10, 2005, "Policy; ‘Take Social Services Away from Councils.’" p. 12.
Government and Opposition, September 22, 1992, G.W. Jones, review of Local Government in Europe: Trends and Development, p. 532; September 22, 1992, G.W. Jones, review of The Politics of Local Government, p. 532.
Parliamentary Affairs, October 1, 1989, David J. Wilson, review of The Politics of Local Government, p. 598.
Political Studies, June 1, 1990, Michael Thrasher, review of The Future of Local Government, p. 369; September 1, 1996, Doreen McCalla-Chen, review of Local Government in the United Kingdom, p. 764; December 1, 1996, Ira Katznelson, review of Theories of Urban Politics, p. 1020; August 1, 2002, Ronan Paddison, review of The New Politics of British Local Governance, p. 604.
Public Administration, September 22, 1990, Alan Alexander, review of The Future of Local Government, p. 401; March 22, 1992, John Benington, review of Local Government in Europe, p. 140; September 22, 1996, Paul Whitely, review of Theory and Methods in Political Science, p. 548; June 22, 2000, Steve Leach, review of The New Management of British Local Governance, p. 473 June 1, 2005, "Three Versions of Stoker," p. 297; June 1, 2006, Josie Kelly, review of British Local Government into the 21st Century, p. 508.
Reference & Research Book News, August 1, 2000, review of The New Politics of British Local Governance, p. 137.
Times Higher Education Supplement, November 24, 2000, Paul Burton, review of The New Politics of British Local Governance.
Times Literary Supplement, December 29, 1995, Andrew Gamble, review of Theory and Methods in Political Science, p. 24.
Urban Affairs Review, July 1, 1996, Robert J. Waste, review of Theories of Urban Politics, p. 810.
West European Politics, January 1, 2001, James Oliver, "The New Politics of British Local Governance & the New Management of British Local Governance & Cities in Contemporary Europe," p. 238.
SourceWatch,http://www.sourcewatch.org/ (September 2, 2008), author profile.
University of Manchester, Institute for Political and Economic Goverance,http://www.ipeg.org.uk/ (September 2, 2008), author profile.
University of Southampton School of Social Sciences, Center for Citizenship and Democracy,http://www.soton.ac.uk/ (September 2, 2008), author profile.