Procedure over purpose : development and implementation of energy conservation policy in UK.
Set in the context of the problems the UK has experienced in achieving effective
economic policies, focusing primarily on the role of the civil service, the thesis
examines the development and implementation of energy conservation policy, in
the UK, from the mid-1970s until April 1992, concentrating mainly on the 1980s.
Changes since April 1992 and the prospects for energy conservation in the
remainder of the 1990s are considered briefly in the final chapter and conclusion.
The thesis uses energy conservation as a case study to explore general theories of
policy development and implementation. Comparisons are made with Japan and
Denmark. In the case of Japan, the comparison is set in the context of Japanese
economic success and the role of the Ministry of International Trade and Industry.
In the case of Denmark, the context is the planning system and the role of local
government. The thesis examines the relative importance of systems of
administration and other factors including: prevailing ideological orthodoxies; the
roles of policy communities and networks.
The title - "Procedure over purpose" - reflects several themes within the thesis
including: the differences between procedure and purpose governed states; the
relevance of the 1980s and 1990s civil service reforms to procedure or purpose
driven policy areas. A further important theme is efficiency, both in terms of the
emphasis on efficiency in civil service reforms and because of a change of
terminology from energy conservation to energy efficiency during the period
Conclusions are drawn on the extent to which development and implementation
of energy conservation policy in the UK has been governed more by procedure
than a sense of purpose; how far this differs from other countries (primarily Japan
and Denmark); its effect on the UK's achievement of energy savings up to the late
1980s; and the implications for policy success or failure.