Managing the crisis? think-tanks and the British response to global financial crisis and great recession

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Ideas matter – but how they do so, and what allows some ideas to become more influential than others is less clear. Certainly, the debate about policy ideas and the many people and organizations producing them continues to occupy researchers. This is also true, more specifically, with regards to the policy responses of British governments to Global Financial Crisis and subsequent Great Recession.

The article presents an analysis of the role of one specific type of ‘ideas organization’, the think-tank, during the two crises and their aftermath between 2007 and 2015. The two central objectives are to understand better, first, if and how government-external policy experts from think-tanks contributed to British governments’ policy responses to ‘the crises’ and whether these actors have, second, contributed to the overall discourse about the nature, causes and origins of the crises and therefore to the environment in which policy responses were made. In that way, the article contributes to a better understanding of think-tanks, to the discussion of the origins of Global Financial Crisis and Great Recession and the policy choices made in their context, and to the question why neo-liberalism has been so resilient in the wake of the crisis.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)191-210
Number of pages20
JournalCritical Policy Studies
Issue number2
Early online date22 Apr 2016
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 22 Apr 2016


  • think tanks
  • great recession
  • global financial crisis
  • policy expertise
  • policy advice


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