Dr Karin Bottom

Dr Karin Bottom

Department of Public Administration and Policy
Senior Lecturer in Public Management and Politics
Director of Teaching and Learning

Contact details

School of Government
Muirhead Tower
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

Dr Karin Bottom directs INLOGOV's MSc in Public Management and lectures on modules concerned with 1) party politics; democracy and  public management; 2) research methods.

Feedback and office hours

Please contact by email to arrange a meeting.

Office hours:  Monday 3-5pm  Wednesday 4-5pm


  • PhD in Government, University of Manchester (2007)
  • MA, Parties and Elections, Keele (2001)
  • BSc in Politics & Psychology, Keele (2000)


  • Karin Bottom is a multi-disciplinary academic with over ten years’ experience in researching and teaching at the interface of politics and public management / public administration.  She  is committed to policy relevant research and engagement activities that have impact. Karin’s current research is concerned with practitioner reflexivity and the role of politicians in changing local government contexts.
  • Karin has extensive experience in supporting and advising local government elected members and officers in terms of in training, executive development, role development and in an advisory capacity. 
  • As INLOGOV’s Director of Teaching and Learning, Karin is involved in shaping the Department’s pedagogic programme and contributing to teaching and learning strategies in the School Government and Society and the College of Social Sciences. The majority of Karin’s   teaching is at postgraduate level but she enjoys contributing to undergraduate learning in the College of Social Sciences and the School of Government and Society.
  • Karin is Vice Chair for Teaching and Learning, Public Administration Committee, Joint Universities Council; Trustee for the Joint Universities Council and she sits on the Editorial Board for Teaching Public Administration.


Director of Teaching and Learning 

Director of Full Time  MSc in Public Management 

Teaching responsibilities:

  •  INLOGOV’s MSc in Public Management; Blended MSc in Public Management  and Leadership
  • Level 7 Blended Degree Apprenticeship in  Public Management  and Leadership
  • Online MPA
  • College of Social Sciences MA in Social Research 


  • Public Policy and Evidence
  • Public Policy Research Methods
  • Managing in  a Political Environment
  • Dissertation modules
  • Questionnaire  Design 

Postgraduate supervision

Karin welcomes the opportunity to supervise doctoral research  in areas relating to local governance, local democracy, party politics,  policy design, practitioner learning.

  • Harvey E.(2016 – ) ‘The Other Body: A Trans and Crip Theory Critique of Privacy, Privilege and Power’. (part-time; with Dr Nicola Smith, POLSIS).
  • Rudkin B. (2015 – ) ‘Dramaturgy of Political Decision making in English Local Government’.  (part-time with Stephen Jeffares, INLOGOV).


  • Dadze Arthur A. (2016) ‘Made in the West adapted by the East – institutionalizing customer-centric public services in Abu Dhabi’.
  • O’Neil. R. (2017) ‘Claims Trains and Frames: The Case of High Speed Two’.
  • Garcia T. (2012) Chavez. ‘Decentralisation as a strategy for building trust between police and citizens: a comparative analysis of the UK and Germany. Submitted. 
  • Oliver T. (2011) The politics of multi-level governance: Regional influence on MPs MEPs and councillors.


Karin’s pedagogical interests revolve around reflective learning and the educational development of public sector practitioners. Her substantive research interests focus on local governance,  local democracy and the local political / management  interface.

Current and recent projects

  • Bottom K (2019) Public Administration/ Management Teaching in the UK (Joint University Council)
  • Durose C. Bottom K. Haque S. (2016) ‘Citizens UK: Birmingham – Research to Impact’.  ESRC Impact Acceleration Account User Engagement Fund University of Birmingham. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lVBaCcyxH58
  • Mangan C. Needham C. Bottom K. Parker S.  (2016) The 21st Century Councillor  (North West Employers)
  • Mangan C. Needham C. Bottom K. Parker S.  (2016) ‘Exploring Relationships between Partners Officers and Elected Members in Birmingham City Council’ University of Birmingham.
  • Staite C. Bottom K. Huggins T. (2015) ‘Babergh & Mid Suffolk councils Support for Transformation through Collaboration and Integration’.
  • John Raine Bottom K. Cade J. (2013) ‘Review Plymouth City Council Constitution’, Plymouth City Council.
  • Bottom K. Reiser M. (2013) ‘Directly Elected Mayors: Impact on the Local Party System’  (University of Birmingham; Goethe University Frankfurt). 

Other activities

2019 – Editorial Board Teaching Public Administration
2018 – External Examiner University of Liverpool, Masters in Management
2018 – Joint Universities Council, Executive Committee
2018 – Vice Chair, Public Administration Committee, Joint Universities Council Teaching and Learning; Trustee Joint Universities Council

2016 – Director of Teaching & Learning (INLOGOV)
2009 – 2012 Co-convenor, PSA Specialist Group in Local Politics
2009 – 2010 Book Review Editor Local Government Studies
2001 – 2007 Editorial Assistant Party Politics


Selected  articles

  • Bottom K. Reiser, M. (2014), 'Still want to party? An assessment of party politicisation in directly elected mayoral authorities in England and Germany's North-Rhine Westphalia', Public Money & Management, 34, (5), 339-346.
  • Bottom, K. Crow, A. (2011) 'Mob rule? Two cases studies of how single-issue organisations  became the ruling party on council', Local Government Studies, 37, (2): 219-241.
  • Bottom, K. Copus, C. (2011 ) 'Motivations for serving on council:  independents versus the mainstream', Public Policy and Administration, (26) 279-305.
  • Clark, A. Bottom, K. and Copus, C. (2008) 'More similar than they would like to admit? Contemporary political ideologies and the rise of the British National Party and Respect in Britain', British Politics, 3, (4): 511-534.

Chapters in edited books

  • Bottom, K.  Copus, C. (2011) 'The BNP in local government: Support for the far-right or for community politics?',  N. Copsey and G. Macklin (eds.) New Perspectives on the BNP, Routledge.
  • Clark A. Colin Copus, C. and Bottom, K.  (2008) 'Multi-party politics in England: small parties, independents, and political associations in English local politics', M. Reiser, E. Holtmann,  Farewell to the party model? Independent local lists in east and west European countries, London Manchester: Urban and Regional Research International, 11, series editors, H. Wollmann,  H. Baldersheim, P. John, 553-276.

View all publications in research portal