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2nd July 2010, 3:23pm
World experts put social policy in the spotlight
SPA logo Issues including citizenship disjuncture in the UK, radical action on global inequalities, and how progressive outsiders helped Obama win healthcare reform will be tackled during the Social Policy Association's annual conference next week, at the University of Lincoln.

Keynote speakers at the three-day conference are World Bank Economist, Branko Milanovic; Occidental College professor, Peter Dreier; Loughborough University professor and former member of the national Equality Panel, Ruth Lister.

Co-ordinating the Conference is Professor of Public Policy at the University of Lincoln, Hugh Bochel, whose current research interests include a study of parliament and welfare policy. He said: “This is the first gathering of social policy academics since the general election and we will be looking at what the coalition could mean for the future of social policy in Britain.

“As well as having some of the top UK social policy academics at the conference there is a strong overseas contingent - from South East Asia, Korea, Japan – taking part and this cultural mix really will enable an exchange of global ideas.”

Peter Dreier is E.P. Clapp Distinguished Professor of Politics and Director of the Urban & Environmental Policy programme at Occidental College, Los Angeles. From 1984-92 he served as senior policy advisor to Boston Mayor Ray Flynn. He is chair of the Horizon Institute, an LA-based think tank, and he serves on the boards of several organisations including the LA Alliance for a New Economy, the Liberty Hill Foundation, the National Housing Institute, and the Southern CA Association for Nonprofit Housing. He will be the first of the plenary speakers at the conference, presenting: Audacity, hope, and public policy: An evaluation of the Obama Administration and American politics after 18 months, on Monday 5 July.

Branko Milanovic is Lead Economist the World Bank in the unit dealing with poverty and inequality, and Senior Associate at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Washington.  Since 1996 he has held the post of Adjunct Professor teaching Economics of Transition at the School for Advanced International Studies at John Hopkins University. His plenary session, Global inequality: New results and implications for 21st century policy, takes place on Tuesday 6 July.

Professor Ruth Lister from Loughborough University, who is a former member of the National Equality Panel, will deliver her session, The age of responsibility: social policy and citizenship in times of change, on Wednesday 7 July.

The University of Lincoln’s Professor Hugh Bochel is currently working on several research projects, including a project looking at parliamentary scrutiny of the intelligence and security services, work on participation - including its relationship with representative democracy, and editing a book on the Conservative Party and Social Policy, to be published by The Policy Press. Hugh is a member of the Political Studies Association, the Study of Parliament Group and the Higher Education Academy. He is also a Fellow of the Royal Society for the Arts and a Visiting Academic Fellow of the Hansard Society.

The Social Policy Association promotes the study of social policy and advances the role of social policy research within policy making, practice and wider public debates. It is a professional association which links academics who teach and research in higher education, postgraduate researchers, policy makers and others.

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