Robert Page

School of Social Policy
Reader in Democratic Socialism and Social Policy

Contact details

Department of Social Policy and Social Work
Muirhead Tower
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

Robert is a Reader in Democratic Socialism and Social Policy at the Department of Social Policy and Social Work, and has been a teacher of Social Policy for over thirty years.


  • Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (1998)
  • PhD  University of Kent (1984)
  • BA (Hons) University of Kent (1976)


Robert Page was born in Hammersmith, West London. He gained both his BA and PhD degrees from the University of Kent.  He was previously a Lecturer in Social Policy at St Davids University College, Lampeter from 1980-1988 before taking up a post as Lecturer in Social Policy & Administration at the University of Nottingham (1988 to 1998).  He moved to the University of Leicester in 1998 as a Senior Lecturer in Social Policy and was awarded a Readership in Social Policy in 2000. 

Since 2001 Robert has been a Reader in Democratic Socialism and Social Policy at the University of Birmingham.  He has also taught on Social Policy and Social Science degree programmes at the University of Kent, the Open University, University College, Cardiff, the University of Loughborough, the University of Alabama and Umea University. He was a member of the Social Policy Association Subject Benchmarking Panel in1999 and a member of the QAA National Benchmarking Panel for Social Policy from 1999-2000.   He has served as a member of the Executive Committee of the Social Policy Association  on three separate occasions (1994-1997: 2000-2003 and 2005-2007). He was a member of the editorial Board of the Journal of Social Policy (JSP) from 1994 to 2003).  He acted as Reviews Editor for JSP from 1996-2003.  He has been a member of the editorial board of the Journal of Poverty and Social Justice (formerly Benefits) editorial Board since 1990 and currently acts as Reviews Editor.  Robert has been a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts since 1998.  He was a Leverhulme Study Abroad Fellow at the John F.Kennedy School of Government at Harvard in 2009. He is a member of the Social Democratic Philosophy Group, chaired by Matthew Beech of the University of Hull. Robert is a lifelong supporter of Fulham Football Club.


Robert currently teaches on both the BA and MA Social Policy programmes at Birmingham.  His main teaching interest is the political history of the British welfare state since 1940.

Undergraduate Teaching .

  • Social Issues and Social Policy
  • From Beveridge to Brown
  • Social Theory and Social Policy
  • Comparative Social Policy (Sweden)

Postgraduate Teaching

  • The Politics of British Social Policy Since 1940
  • International Social Policy (Sweden)


Robert's scholarship and research has covered a wide range of topics (see the full list of publications below). His current interests are in the political history of the British Welfare State since 1940 and the future development of social democratic social policy.


Page, R (2007), Revisiting the Welfare State|, New York/Maidenhead: McGraw Hill/Open University Press.

Bochel, H, Bochel, C, Sykes, R and Page, R (2009), Social Policy: Themes, Issues and Debates, Pearson.

Chapters in Books

`The Conservative Party and the welfare state since 1945’ in Bochel, H. (ed) (2011) The Conservative Party and Social Policy, Policy: Bristol.

`The emerging blue (and orange) health strategy: continuity or change? In Lee, S. and Beech, M. (eds) (2011) The Cameron-Clegg Government: Coalition Politics in an Age of Austerity, Palgrave Macmillan, pp.89-104.


`Without a song in their heart: New Labour, the welfare state and the retreat from democratic socialism’Journal of Social Policy, 36, 1, January, 2007, pp.19-38.  36, 1, January, 2007, pp.19-38.  

`With love from me to you: the New Democrats, New Labour and the politics of welfare reform’ Benefits: The Journal of Poverty and Social Justice, 17:2, 2009, pp.149-58.

`David Cameron’s modern Conservative approach to poverty and social justice: towards one nation or two?, Journal of Poverty and Social Justice, 18:2 2010, pp. 147-60.

`The changing face of social administration’, Social Policy & Administration, 44:3, 2010, pp.326-42.

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Political history of the welfare state since 1940; New Labour's social policy; Conservative Party's social policy

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