City Politics, Canada

Written by James Lightbody

© 2005

City Politics, Canada is an introduction to the basic politics and core policies of today’s city halls. While the book surveys classic discussions and accurately describes municipal institutions in Canada, it also explains why particular policies assume the specific shape they do. James Lightbody draws on over thirty years experience researching and participating in city politics to argue that transparent accountability from local public officials, related to specific policies and the general condition of the community, is an important and desired end for democratic city government. Arguments for change within city politics are insufficient if the result is that everyone has a say but no one is accountable. In following this theme throughout the book, Lightbody examines the various facets of metropolitan politics in a lively and engaging manner, and explains why city politics are important to all Canadians. Provincial agenda setting is viewed through the lens of the urban political landscape, as are the reasons behind the Toronto Megacity (1996) and Montreal's consolidation. Finally, the book expands its discussion to explore the global reach of the urban phenomenon and the impact of world practices on Canada's metropolitan cities. The ultimate hope for this book is that readers, as citizens, will be better able to understand the basic politics and core policies of today's city halls—and will be better equipped to participate effectively in the processes by which those policies are made.

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Product Details

  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 576 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.0in x 1.0in x 9.0in
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SKU# HE000059

  • PUBLISHED DEC 2005

    From: $47.60

    Regular Price: $56.00

    ISBN 9781551117539
  • PUBLISHED DEC 2005
    From: $46.95

Quick Overview

"City Politics, Canada will both irritate and please, but it should be read—it raises all the important questions about urban governance in Canada." - Caroline Andrew, Centre on Governance, University of Ottawa

City Politics, Canada

Written by James Lightbody

© 2005

City Politics, Canada is an introduction to the basic politics and core policies of today’s city halls. While the book surveys classic discussions and accurately describes municipal institutions in Canada, it also explains why particular policies assume the specific shape they do. James Lightbody draws on over thirty years experience researching and participating in city politics to argue that transparent accountability from local public officials, related to specific policies and the general condition of the community, is an important and desired end for democratic city government. Arguments for change within city politics are insufficient if the result is that everyone has a say but no one is accountable. In following this theme throughout the book, Lightbody examines the various facets of metropolitan politics in a lively and engaging manner, and explains why city politics are important to all Canadians. Provincial agenda setting is viewed through the lens of the urban political landscape, as are the reasons behind the Toronto Megacity (1996) and Montreal's consolidation. Finally, the book expands its discussion to explore the global reach of the urban phenomenon and the impact of world practices on Canada's metropolitan cities. The ultimate hope for this book is that readers, as citizens, will be better able to understand the basic politics and core policies of today's city halls—and will be better equipped to participate effectively in the processes by which those policies are made.

Continue Reading Read Less

Product Details

  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 576 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.0in x 1.0in x 9.0in
  • Reviews

    City Politics, Canada will both irritate and please, but it should be read--it raises all the important questions about urban governance in Canada. It integrates an understanding of the impact of the world context on Canadian cities with the detailing of the ways in which provincial governments guide and control municipalities. James Lightbody has always been an ardent promoter of city-region amalgamations and municipal political parties and these two themes are central to City Politics, Canada. Both positions are argued in great detail and the discussion links these issues to the big political questions--democracy, participation, innovation. The scope is broad and the detail is there.


    Caroline Andrew, Centre on Governance, University of Ottawa

    City Politics, Canada is an excellent read. It is comprehensive--from historical reform efforts, through public policy making in our cities, to urban elections, political parties and interest groups. It identifies the impact of urban culture and social movements. It comments on the current debates about local intergovernmental relations and new public management. It has opinions on regional/metropolitan governance for the twenty-first century. And it asks the reader to think about urban theory and the internationalization of cities. It does all this with some attitude--one which engages and provokes rethinking much of what we think we know about modern political life in Canada.


    Patrick J. Smith, Simon Fraser University
  • Author Information

    James Lightbody is Professor of Political Science at the University of Alberta. He received his Ph.D. in Political Science from Queen's University and has published in various scholarly journals on the topic of city politics. He is the editor of Canadian Metropolitics: Governing Our Cities (Copp, Clark, 1995).

  • Table of contents

    List of Abbreviations
    Preface
    Introductory Note

    Part I: An Introduction to Canadian Metropolitan Politics

    Chapter 1: The study of urban politics
    Chapter 2: The policy-making system of the Canadian city
    Chapter 3: Urban political culture and the limits to policy choice
    Chapter 4: The development of locally accountable organizations

    Part II: The Politics of City Governing

    Chapter 5: Elections and voters
    Chapter 6: Political parties and theories of local non-partisanship 
    Chapter 7: Interests and lobbying at City Hall
    Chapter 8: Social movements, leadership, and the policy agenda

    Part III: Intergovernmental Issues and Metropolitan Governing

    Chapter 9: Relations among governments
    Chapter 10: Standing issues in regional governing
    Chapter 11: Theoretical questions about metropolitan institutions
    Chapter 12: Organizing city governments in the metropolis
    Chapter 13: The politics of local government reform

    Part IV: Canadian Metropolitan Centres in a World Context

    Chapter 14: The impact of world practices on Canadian metropolitan cities

    Glossary
    References
    Index of Names
    Index of Subjects

     

    "

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