By Jacqueline Barron
An exploration of the hyperlink among the private and non-private worlds of neighborhood politicians utilizing fabric from enormous quantities of hours of exclusive interviews with political activists and their companions. The e-book matters itself with the person on the centre of this concern - the councillor.
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Extra resources for Councillors in Crisis: The Public and Private Worlds of Local Councillors
Implicit recognition of this has led some authors to conclude that in explaining political recruitment, it is sufficient merely to document the personal characteristics shared by a majority of councillors (Budge and Fairlie 1975). Local Politicians: Ambition or Drift? 39 Other writers have gone further and suggested that this correlation is due to unspecified 'forces' which make it more probable that people such as professionals, managers and the self-employed will succeed in becoming councillors (Stanyer 1977).
These changes are related, since a high proportion of women work as teachers or other local government employees. Nevertheless, there is no authority on which the proportion of women even approaches that within the population as a whole. Gyford points out that the differences between type of authority in respect of gender, age and employment status of councillors are overlaid by party differences (Gyford et a!. 1989). Younger members, women and those in manual occupations are found in larger numbers on councils where Labour is the majority party.
We also adopt a broader interpretation of opportunities than that discussed by Gordon and see opportunities of two kinds: first the opportunities provided by the parties in their selection procedures; secondly the opportunities individuals provide for themselves, by being in the right place at the right time (or, in the case of the reluctant candidates, the wrong place at the wrong time). Finally, we look at motivations, as reported to us by the individuals themselves. This more integrated approach became evident to us during our initial research into councillors' perceptions of the relationship between their public and private worlds, and we developed it in our subsequent study of the recruitment of women candidates.