Voluntary Organisations and Social Policy in Britain

Perspectives on Change and Choice

  • Margaret Harris
  • Colin Rochester

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xv
  2. Margaret Harris, Colin Rochester, Peter Halfpenny
    Pages 1-20
  3. Duncan W. Scott, Lynne Russell
    Pages 49-63
  4. Stephen P. Osborne, Kathleen Ross
    Pages 81-93
  5. Marilyn Taylor
    Pages 94-107
  6. David Mullins, Moyra Riseborough
    Pages 154-170
  7. Margaret Harris
    Pages 171-184
  8. Justin Davis Smith
    Pages 185-198
  9. Michael Locke, Paul Robson, Steven Howlett
    Pages 199-212
  10. Back Matter
    Pages 229-240

About this book


The last two decades of the twentieth century saw the most fundamental changes in British social policy since the creation of the welfare state in the 1940s. From Margaret Thatcher's radical reassessment of the role of the state to Tony Blair's 'Third Way', the voluntary sector has been at the heart of these changes. At the beginning of the twenty-first century, voluntary organisations have been cast in leading roles on the social policy stage. They are expected to make key contributions to countering social exclusion; to regenerating communities; to providing social housing and welfare services; to promoting international aid and development; and to developing and sustaining democratic participation and the active community.

But how are voluntary sector organisations grappling with the implications of their new, expanded role? How is their relationship with the state changing in practice? This book, which has its origins in an international conference of leading academics in the field, provides answers to these pressing questions. It analyses the numerous and complex ways in which the formulation and implementation of social policy is dependent on the contributions of the voluntary sector. It discusses the impact of the new policy environment on voluntary organisations. And it suggests that the successful implementation of social policy requires government to acknowledge and nurture the distinctive features and contributions of voluntary sector organisations. Voluntary Organisations and Social Policy in Britain is essential reading not only for the many people studying, working in or working with the voluntary sector in Britain but also for anyone who is interested in the formulation and implementation of social policy.


conflict Policy social policy

Editors and affiliations

  • Margaret Harris
    • 1
    • 2
  • Colin Rochester
    • 3
  1. 1.Aston University Business SchoolUK
  2. 2.Centre for Voluntary OrganisationLondon School of EconomicsUK
  3. 3.University of SurreyRoehamptonUK

Bibliographic information