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Different Target Groups, Different Policy Outcomes? Panel at the 2016 IPSA Congress, 23-28 July

posted Jul 11, 2016, 1:34 AM by Eva Thomann
When:                 27-07-2016 | 9:00 - 10:45
Where:                Poznań Congress Center, Pavilion PCC-7 / 1.A
Panel Code:        RC30.07
Panel Chairs:     Jale Tosun and Eva Thomann

1. Moralized Authorities? Same-Sex Marriage in the Public Space
Christian Adam, Christoph Knill, Stephan Grohs
Discussant: Kent Weaver 

2. Tools and Their Targets: Beyond Nudges and Utility Maximization in Policy Compliance
Michael Howlett
Discussant: Fritz Sager 

3. Who Deserves Solidarity? Social Construction of Target Groups and Welfare Policy Delivery
Eva Thomann, Carolin Rapp
Discussant: Kent Weaver

In today’s world of growing inequalities, researchers increasingly scrutinize Schneider and Ingram's assertions on the powerful influence of the social construction of target populations on the shaping of the policy agenda, policy design, and on public officials. Many public policies can be conceived of as externality situations. If target groups are perceived as powerful and deserving, then governments are likely to internalize costs. Conversely, governments might externalize costs to target groups that are deemed undeserving and / or powerless.
Beyond political decision-making processes, recent research highlights that target group characteristics also impact on how public services are delivered to citizens, as well as on target group compliance. The implications for inequalities in the ways in which citizens gain access to and respond to public goods, measures and services are far-reaching. The social construction of target groups might enhance our understanding of responses to all kinds of political problems.
The aim of this panel is to gather, systematize and move forward the existing empirical and conceptual knowledge on how target population characteristics affect political and administrative decisions and policy outcomes across policy sectors and disciplines. The panel invites contributions of both established and young scholars that adopt an analytic (as opposed to normative) and systematic comparative approach.