I have taught many officials and public/civil servants over the past twenty years or so, and a regular message in my conversations with them is that the political world often seems to be chaotic and irrational, or dominated by ‘quick fixes’ and policies that are incapable of dealing effectively with the problem, despite the upbeat talk of their political masters. The more I developed the policy success heuristic, the more convinced I became that it is the key to unravelling many aspects of real politik that public policy theories rarely, or even never, write about. Indeed, in doing so, the success heuristic can also add value to virtually any broader policy analysis perspective.
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