Reporting Power
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Reporting Power

Civic Structures: Why They Matter, How They Work

About the Book

How do you hold power to account? How do you report tragedies, scandals and policy dilemmas? This book shows journalism students how to get to grips with centres of civic power in the UK. We look at how UK civic structures work, how to contact politicians and officials and where to find the stories that matter. In the process, we look at the horror of the Grenfell fire, terrorism, child protection scandals, major hospital failures and the police approach to rape investigations.

About the Author

Kate Ironside
Kate Ironside

Kate Ironside was a journalist for 26 years, specialising in politics. She started by reporting local government, spent 13 years at Westminster covering national government and, for 17 years, wrote a weekly column on the European Union. She is now a journalism academic, teaching at the University of Northampton, and a member of the executive board of the Broadcast Journalism Training Council. She studied at the University of Reading, City University and the London School of Economics. She can be reached on

Table of Contents

  • Acknowledgements
  • Part A: The Overview
  • 1. UK Government & Parliament
  • 2. Devolution: How We Got Here
  • 3. Reporting Wales & Scotland
    • Wales
    • Scotland
    • Consequences for England
  • 4. Terror & Hope: Northern Ireland
  • 5. Local Government
  • Part B: News & Local Government
  • 6. Child Protection
    • The Tale of Baby P
    • The Death of Declan
    • Rotherham Child Abuse Scandal
  • 7. Housing & Planning
    • Planning Challenges
    • Housing Challenges
    • Structures in a Nutshell
    • The Tale of Grenfell Tower
  • Part C: Governments & Parliaments in Action
  • 8. Why Students Do or Don’t Pay Tuition Fees
  • 9. Bombing Syria
  • Part D: Money
  • 10. Government Budgets: Affecting Lives
  • 11. The Price of Justice
    • Paying for Justice (& Story Ideas)
  • Part E: Reporting Public Services
  • 12. The National Health Service
    • Issues: The Never-Ending Health Stories
    • Structures: How to Find Stories
    • A Place of Fear: The Mid-Staffs Scandal
  • 13. The Police
    • Structure & Accountability
    • Funding And Why It Matters
    • Reporting Rape: The Police, the Politicians and the Press
    • Cliff Richard, the Police & the BBC
  • Part F: Final Tips For Newsdays
  • 14. Guide to Compiling Your Student Newsday Diary
  • Contacting Me
  • About the Author

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