In this informative critique of contemporary leadership, renowned political scientist Donald Savoie poses and answers the crucial questions: where is power located, and who is in charge? In recent years it has become extremely difficult to pinpoint the location of political and economic power, making it complicated to determine who is to blame for political and economic catastrophes and leading to increased disenchantment with Western politicians and bureaucrats. Power considers how forces such as globalization, the new media, the changing role of the courts in parliamentary democracies, the partisanship of political parties in shaping policy, and collapsing boundaries between governments and within government departments have caused citizens to feel their countries are less democratic. Savoie argues that power is leaving institutions and organizations and going to powerful individuals in both the public and private sectors, who often push aside formal processes in order to drive change. A startling and clarifying examination of changes in modern society, Power unravels the tangled web of influences that have put the power to make important decisions in the hands of the few to show why our governing institutions are no longer effective.
Donald J. Savoie holds the Canada Research Chair in Public Administration and Governance and is a professor of public administration at Universite de Moncton.
Preface ix; Introduction 3; 1 Globalization: I Am Not to Blame, the Devil Made Me Do It 19; 2 The Private Sector: Someone Now Has Power, but Who? 47; 3 Power Operating above the Fray 67; 4 The Shifting Power of Persuasion: Political Parties, the Media, Permanent Political Campaigns, and Polls 86; 5 When Transparency Meets Power 106; 6 Revisiting Governing from the Centre 129; 7 The New Bureaucrats: Short-Order Cooks 152; 8 Soft Power: Who Has It? 170; 9 Our Institutions Are Melting the Canadian Way: With a Whisper, Not a Bang 193; 10 Looking to Personalism for Answers 213; 11 The Setting or the Individual? 230; Notes 243; Index 283