Ideas and institutional conversion through layering: The case of Israeli immigration policy

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Abstract

Gradual transformative policy change has attracted increasing attention in recent times. However, existing explanations for the evolvement of the various modes of such change do not account for the direction and content of change and also have difficulty with more complex policy change processes in which several modes are employed. Ideational analysis can fill this gap, albeit most ideational research does not address gradual policy and ideational changes. Based on a process tracing of two cases from Israeli immigration policy, this article argues that a low level of discretion and a strong status quo bias are conditions that enable institutional conversion through layering. Ideational change in policy solution and problem definition ideas, and the interaction between the two, can explain this pattern and its direction. The article not only expands our knowledge of gradual transformative change, but also moves ideational research a step beyond punctuated equilibrium.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1038-1053
Number of pages16
JournalPublic Administration
Volume92
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2014
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

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