About Professor Allan McConnell
Research interests include: public policy and the politics of crises and disasters.
Allan McConnell's main teaching and research interests are in various aspects of public policy making. He is particularly interested in issues of success and failure. Aspects of his research deal with the policy and political dimensions of crises, disasters and policy failures. Issues include contingency planning, political leadership, accountability, inquiries and learning. One of the main themes is the political nature (large P and small p) of public authority responses to crisis, rather than them being simply ‘rational’ responses to extraordinary phenomena. Other aspects of his research focus on the issue of policy success. A recent book Understanding Policy Success: Rethinking Public Policy (Palgrave Macmillan, 2010) deals with this rarely-studied topic, including the relationship between success and failure. In doing so it helps explain, he argues, many under-researched phenomena, such as hidden agendas, ‘policy on the hoof’ and ‘good politics but bad policy’. Allan is currently working on several solo and collaborative projects which develop these themes in areas such as the global financial crisis, Scottish devolution, hidden agendas and the politics of policy inaction. His teaching varies but generally involves GOVT2552 Policy Analysis, GOVT6316 Policy Making, Power and and Politics, and GOVT6318 Crises, Disasters and Public Management.
Allan is currently Chair of Department until 31 December 2013.