Shaun Bevan
Bureaucratic Responsiveness: The Effects of Government, Public and European Attention on the UK Bureaucracy

7th ECPR General Conference, Sciences Po, Bordeaux, 04. bis 07. September 2013

What determines the bureaucratic agenda? This paper combines insights from models of bureaucratic behavior with agenda-setting models of government attention to test the effects of the government, public and EU agendas on the bureaucratic agenda. Using time series cross-sectional analyses of subject and ministry coded data on UK statutory instruments from 1987 to 2008 I find strong effects for both the government and EU agendas on UK statutory instruments. Furthermore, by breaking the data into different sets based on its relationship with the EU several logical differences in these effects are found. These results include the EU agenda having exclusive influence on implementing instruments and the UK legislative agenda being the sole driver of bureaucratic attention on those instruments that mention the EU but do not implement EU legislation amongst other findings. This paper opens a new avenue for research on bureaucracy by approaching it as a unique policy-making institution.