The Politics of Ideas and the Spread of Enterprise Zones

cover art
288 pp., 6 x 9
ISBN: 9780878408009 ()

288 pp., 6 x 9
ISBN: 9780878408016 (0878408010)

ISBN: 9781589014596

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July 2000
LC: 00-026360
Sales Rights: World

American Governance and Public Policy series


Table of Contents

The Politics of Ideas and the Spread of Enterprise Zones
Karen Mossberger
This book explores how policy ideas are spread—or diffused—in an age in which policymaking has become increasingly complex and specialized. Using the concept of enterprise zones as a case study in policy diffusion, Karen Mossberger compares the process of their adoption in Virginia, Indiana, Michigan, New York, and Massachusetts over a twelve-year period.

Enterprise zones were first proposed by the Reagan administration as a supply-side effort to reenergize inner cities, and they were eventually embraced by liberals and conservatives alike. They are a compelling example of a policy idea that spread and evolved rapidly. Mossberger describes the information networks and decisionmaking processes in the five states, assessing whether enterprise zones spread opportunistically, as a mere fad, or whether well-informed deliberation preceded their adoption.
Karen Mossberger is associate professor of public administration, University of Illinois at Chicago.
Gerard W. Boychuk, Karen Mossberger, and Mark C. Rom, Series Editors
"This is, refreshingly, both a positive and a realistic policy story."—Australian Journal of Political Science

"Intriguing analysis . . . [this book] promises to reinvigorate research on policy diffusion and policy learning at the state and local level."—Susan E. Clarke, University of Colorado at Boulder

Table of Contents

Introduction: Diffusion and Decision Making in Five States

Decision Making Models

Washington's Most Successful Nonprogram

Diffusion in the States: Old Wine in New Bottles?

Polydiffusion in an Intergovernmental Network

The Diffusion of a Policy Label

Informed Decision Making

A Decision-Making Continuum

Conclusion: Diffusion, Decision Making, and the Politics of Ideas


Appendix 1. Methodology

Appendix 2. Legislative Questions

Appendix 3. Administrative Questions

Appendix 4. Washington Interviews

Appendix 5. Respondents

Chapter Notes