My early work, building on my graduate thesis on betting taxation, focused on government's implementation capacity, analysing instruments, forms of organization and types of policy context, and this research has formed the background to my later work on public management, regulation and public service reform.
Over the past decade or so most of my work has been focused on various aspects of regulation, including collaborative work with colleagues at LSE's Centre for Analysis of Risk and Regulation, which I helped to found in 2001. Some of the projects I have been involved with over recent years include:
- an analysis of one of the UK's new quasi-independent regulators (OFTEL) created to oversee privatised utilities, which remains the only 'inside' account of the organizational working of such institutions published as Telecommunications Regulation, by Clare Hall, Colin Scott and Christopher Hood, Routledge 1999.
- an analysis of the growth of regulation or regulation-like devices within UK government over a twenty-year period, which for the first time documented the resources invested in such activity over time and analysed the issues that surround it published as Regulation Inside Government, by Christopher Hood et al, OUP 1999.
- an analysis of the way that nine types of risk are regulated by the UK and EU, which developed a way of analysing risk regulation from a novel 'regime' perspective published as The Government of Risk, by Christopher Hood, Henry Rothstein and Robert Baldwin, OUP 2001.
- a collaborative book with Oliver James, B. Guy Peters and Colin Scott on the development of controls over government in comparative perspective, published as Controlling Modern Government: Variety, Commonality and Change by Edward Elgar in 2004.
- a collaborative book with Martin Lodge at CARR on the analysis of 'public service bargains' across a set of different states The Politics of Public Service Bargains: Reward, Competency, Loyalty - and Blame published by Oxford University Press in 2006.
- a collaborative book edited by Helen Margetts, Perri 6 and Christopher Hood, based on a joint seminar series organized by the ESRC Public Services Programme and the Oxford Internet Institute. The book is entitled Paradoxes of Modernization: Unintended Consequences of Public Policy Reform Oxford, OUP, June 2010.
- work on the analysis of blame-avoidance, building on my inaugural lecture at Oxford university in November 2001 was published as The Blame Game by Princeton University Press in 2011.
The projects I am working on at present include:
- a collaborative work on the use of performance indicators in public services, drawing on the findings of the ESRC Public Services programme (2004-2010).
- Yesterday's Tomorrow's: What Happened to the Future of Government? Funded by the Leverhulme Trust, I am working on a study of changes in executive government over the past 35 years, in collaboration with Dr Ruth M. Dixon.
- When the Party's Over; The Politics of Austerity in Public Services An ESRC Professorial Fellowship will allow me to study former periods of fiscal austerity in UK and elsewhere.