Critical Policy Studies


  • Frank Fischer, Rutgers University, New Jersey, USA
  • Richard Freeman, Edinburgh University, UK

Forum Editors:

  • Douglas Torgerson, Trent University, Canada
  • Navdeep Mathur, Indian Institute of Management, India

Reviews Editors: 

  • Jennifer Dodge, State University of New York, Albany, USA
  • Anna Durnová, University of Vienna, Austria

Book Notes Editor:

  • Tatum Matharu, University of Birmingham, UK


  • Helen Hancock, University of Birmingham, UK

critical-policy-studiesCritical Policy Analysis was launched on 22 May 2007 to take the place of the previous INLOGOV-produced Local Governance. It seeks to draw attention to critical, interpretive and discursive forms of policy analysis and creative ways of combining qualitative and quantitative methods with empirical and normative concerns.

Critical Policy Studies brings contemporary theoretical and methodological discussions, both normative and empirical, to bear on the understanding and analysis of public policy, at local, national and global levels. The journal offers a unique forum for researchers, policy-makers and practitioners to challenge established accounts of policy-analytic methods, to explore alternative approaches to policy-making, and to promote democratic governance. To this end, the journal concentrates on the relation of political and policy theory to specific practices of governance, in particular as they pertain to democratic governance, participatory practices, social justice and general public welfare. This necessitates an emphasis on the interplay between qualitative and quantitative modes of inquiry. The journal thus moves beyond narrow empirical approaches to pay special attention to interpretive, argumentative, discursive approaches to policy-making.

Although Critical Policy Studies is a rigorous academic journal, it also pays special attention to the practical aspects of policy-making and analysis that confront real-world practitioners.  In addition, the journal includes essays on current debates and opinions in the field, review articles that reflect on published research, and book reviews.

The journal’s focus on the interaction between theory and practice is reflected in its structure, with room for academic journal articles, forum articles contributing to current debate and opinions, and review articles reflecting on published work. All submissions are subject to peer-review.

Current issue: table of contents available at Routledge Taylor and Francis group

Further details of the aims and scope of the journal can be found at: