This book has taken an unconscionable time to write, and I am enormously grateful for the patience and enthusiasm of the series editor David Gladstone. I am also grateful for the advice and help of many friends and colleagues, including Peter Dwyer, David Green, Emma Heron, John Macnicol, Simon Robinson, Adrian Sinfield, Carol Smart, Steve Teles, Robert Walker, John Welshman, Robert Whelan and Michael Wiseman. I am particularly indebted to three colleagues in Leeds. Marie Leake read the whole book in draft and made many suggestions as to how it could be made more helpful to students. Kirk Mann has provided innumerable ideas, references and constructive criticisms over many years of friendship, and Fiona Williams has been both a supportive colleague and a constant source of stimulating and innovative ideas about welfare.
None of those whose work is discussed in this book were asked to comment upon it in draft. Nevertheless, I wish to thank Frank Field MP both for his personal kindness and for the interest that he has shown in my work over many years. I am also grateful to Lawrence Mead, who has been extraordinarily generous with his time and his research materials.
I am pleased to have an opportunity to acknowledge three sources of financial support. The first is the award of a Leverhulme Research Fellowship in 1998/9, which enabled me to undertake much of the research for Chapters 3 and 5. The second is a grant from the Rockefeller Foundation, which enabled me to present a paper on welfare reform in Britain and the United States to the 22nd Research Conference of the Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management in Seattle in November 2000. The third is the support of the Economic and Social Research Council for the Research Group on Care, Values and the Future of Welfare at the University of Leeds.
My preoccupation with welfare debates has long been tolerated with wry