British public attitudes and ethnic minorities

Saggar, Shamit and Drean, Joanne (2001) British public attitudes and ethnic minorities. Working Paper. Institute for Public Policy Research, Cabinet Office, London.

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Public attitudes constrain the content of most new policy proposals. Despite knowing
this, policy projects often start without possessing a detailed understanding of what
public opinion actually is in relation to that policy. This results in guesses and
estimates about the public reaction to policy proposals akin to shadow boxing; the
opponent is definitely there but little else is known about them. When an opinion
survey is taken toward the end of the project, the population often surprises policy
makers by their enthusiasm or scorn for certain idea, at which point it is too late in the
say to react.
It is therefore an early priority of the PIU Ethnic Minorities and Labour Markets
(EMLM) team to develop a clear understanding of public attitudes concerning ethnic
minorities, and what this means for a government keen to improve the situation for
disadvantaged groups. It is especially important to have a clear view in the field of
ethnic minorities, as feelings and beliefs tend to be strong and politically sensitive.

Item Type: Reports and working papers (Working Paper)
Schools and Departments: School of Law, Politics and Sociology > Politics
Depositing User: Shamit Saggar
Date Deposited: 06 Feb 2012 21:22
Last Modified: 29 May 2013 08:17
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