Power in Policymaking

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Abstract

In modern western democracies, decisions on resource allocations are formulated in political arenas. Knowledge of the factors that have a predominant influence on policy formulation is desirable. But these factors are not only the external structural factors as described in the systems theory but also inherent characteristics of the socioeconomic and political environment, visible in the value orientation of the stakeholders. The understanding of the factors and their analysis is important because if all the concerned individuals in policymaking had the same beliefs, had same access to resources, had identical accountability, received the same form of support from citizens, then there would not have been any interrogation into the question: who decides policy? In this question lies hidden the larger question—how is power created and how can it be transferred? Through this study, I will answer this question through analysis of case studies using the narrative policy framework (NPF). I will show that power is permanent and it is merely transferred from one policymaking environment to another.