Print page

Critical Policy Discourse Analysis

Edited by Nicolina Montesano Montessori, Associate Professor, Research Group: Normative Professionalization, HU University of Applied Sciences Utrecht, the Netherlands, Michael Farrelly, Lecturer in English Language, Department of English, Creative Writing and American Studies, University of Hull and Jane Mulderrig, Senior Lecturer in Applied Linguistics, School of English, University of Sheffield, UK
This book provides a series of contemporary and international policy case studies analysed through discursive methodological approaches in the traditions of critical discourse analysis, social semiotics and discourse theory. This is the first volume that connects this discursive methodology systematically to the field of interpretive policy analysis and will therefore be an essential book for researchers who wish to include a discursive analysis in their interpretive policy research.
Extent: c 304 pp
Hardback Price: $145.00 Web: $130.50
Publication Date: December 2019
ISBN: 978 1 78897 495 0
Availability: Not yet published

Buy the E-Book @ paperback price

  • eISBN: 978 1 78897 496 7

Join our mailing list

  • Politics and Public Policy
  • Public Administration and Management
  • Public Policy
  • Research Methods in Politics and Public Policy
  • Research Methods
  • Qualitative Research Methods
  • Research Methods in Politics and Public Policy
  • Research Methods in Social Policy
  • Social Policy and Sociology
  • Research Methods in Social Policy
  • Research Methods
Critical Policy Discourse Analysis bridges the literature on critical discourse analysis (CDA) and critical policy analysis to provide a practical guide on how to combine these major approaches to critical social science. The volume gives a clear introduction to concepts and analytical procedures for critical policy discourse analysis, and includes ten international case studies in which authors explain and critically reflect upon the methods and theories that they have used to successfully integrate CDA with critical policy studies across a diverse range of policy issues.

Case studies are used to explore issues in economics, health, education, crisis management, the environment, language and energy policy. Analysing these through discursive methodological approaches in the traditions of critical discourse analysis, social semiotics and discourse theory, this book connects this discursive methodology systematically to the field of critical policy studies.

This is an essential read for researchers wishing to practically combine methods of critical discourse analysis with critical policy studies. It provides key insights for politics scholars looking to gain a more in-depth understanding of the impact and analysis of discourse.
‘By bringing together, in a highly innovative and informative way, up-to-date theory, detailed methodological guidance and well-documented empirical examples, Critical Policy Discourse Analysis is now the go-to book for everyone interested in the contribution of critical discourse analysis to policy studies. The book captures the enormous theoretical and methodological progress CDA has made over the last decade. It convincingly demonstrates that CDA should be part of the standard repertoire of policy analysis and a core topic of every policy studies curriculum.’
– Hendrik Wagenaar, King’s College London, UK and The University of Canberra, Australia
Contributors include: T. Bartlett, D. Caterina, M. Farrelly, S. Horrod, N. Montesano Montessori, J. Mulderrig, J.F. Palma Carvajal, M. Poutanen, M. Rieder, K. Savski, H. Theine


1. Introducing Critical Policy Discourse Analysis
Jane Mulderrig, Nicolina Montesano Montessori and Michael Farrelly

2. Text Oriented Discourse Analysis: an analysis of a struggle for hegemony in Mexico
Nicolina Montesano Montessori

3. Analysing orders of discourse of neoliberal rule: health ‘nudges’ and the rise of psychological governance
Jane Mulderrig

4. The recontextualisation of higher education policy in learning and teaching practices: the discursive construction of community
Sarah Horrod

5. Advocacy NGOs in Chilean education policy-making: spaces of resistance or agencies fostering neoliberalism?
Juan Francisco Palma Carvajal

6. Business logics: co-option of media discourse by pro-market arguments in the case of Nokia in Finland
Mikko Poutanen

7. Analysing the Representation of Social Actors: a conceptualisation of objects of governance
Michael Farrelly

8. ‘The billionaires' boot boys start screaming‘ - A Critical Analysis of Economic Policy Discourses in reaction to Piketty’s ‘Capital in the 21st Century’
Hendrik Theine and Maria Rieder

9. Historical ethnography of policy discourse: examining the genesis of a language strategy in Slovenia
Kristof Savski

10. Historical materialist policy analysis meets critical discourse analysis of practical argumentation: Making sense of hegemony struggles in Italy’s crisis management
Daniela Caterina

11. Scaling the Incommensurate: Discourses of Sustainability in the Western Isles of Scotland.
Tom Bartlett

12. Concluding Remarks on Critical Policy Discourse Analysis
Michael Farrelly, Nicolina Montesano Montessori and Jane Mulderrig