This paper examines social policy developments in Northern Irelandsince the May 2011 election. In many areas of social policy NorthernIreland lags behind other regions of the UK, the results of decadesof neglect of economic and social policy, and years of conflict. Themandatory coalition established under devolution presents particularchallenges for policy making but there had been optimism thatdevolved structures would be more responsive to Northern Ireland’sparticular circumstances. However, this paper argues that the lack ofprogress or vision evident in the previous period of government showsno sign of improving during the current mandate. It provides examplesto illustrate problems caused by the failure to link economicand social policy, a silo mentality and the dominance of a neo-liberalagenda.
- silo mentality