Quasi-government is important for social policy because it is responsible for delivering many welfare services — National Health Service trusts, much of health education, housing through housing associations, education through grantmaintained schools, benefits through the Benefits Agency, the Child Support Agency, and so on — as well as having a major role in areas such as urban regeneration and employment through organisations such as training and enterprise councils and urban development corporations. The role of quasigovernment in social policy arguably increased significantly under the Conservative administrations of 1979–97 and continues to have a major role under the Labour government. But what is quasi-government and does it have implications for social policy? This chapter considers the role and rationale for quasi-government, together with a range of important associated issues such as accountability, control, scrutiny and the politicisation of quasi-government.
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Hugh M. Bochel
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