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Dr Richard Heffernan

Profile summary

  • Central Academic Staff
  • Head of Discipline
  • Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences
  • School of Polis, Phil, Econ, Dev, Geog
  • Politics
  • richard.heffernan

Professional biography

I joined The Open University in 1999 and have held visiting appointments at the Center for European Studies, Harvard University, the University of California, Los Angeles and the London School of Economics. I am presently a Visiting Professor at the University of Notre Dame.

Research interests

I work in the field of comparative politics and specialise in British politics. I am presently researching the British prime minister. and my research on this subject has produced several articles on this subject, among them 'Prime ministerial predominance? Core executive politics in the UK' (British Journal of Politics and International Relations 2003); 'Why the prime minister cannot be a president: comparing institutional imperatives in Britain and the US' (Parliamentary Affairs 2005); 'The prime minister and the news media: political communication as a leadership resource' (Parliamentary Affairs 2006); 'Exploring (and explaining) the prime minister' (British Journal of Politics and International Relations 2006); 'Tony Blair as Labour Party leader' (in Anthony Seldon ed Blair's Britain, Cambridge University Press 2007), (with Mark Bennister) 'Cameron as Prime Minister: TheIntra-Executive Politics of Britain's Coalition Government' (Parliamentary Affairs, 2012) and 'There's no need for any ization: The prime minister is only prime ministerial' (Parliamentary Affairs, 2012). I have previously published widely on the making of New Labour, and I am the author of New Labour and Thatcherism: Political Change in Britain (Palgrave Macmillan, 2001).

PhD supervision

Richard Heffernan welcomes applications from suitably qualified candidates to supervise PhD students in British politics, especially the form and function of the prime minister, executive politics, executive- legislative relations, political parties and electoral politics.

Heffernan, R (2012) 'There's no need for an -ization: The prime minister is merely prime ministerial' Forthcoming

Bennister, M and Heffernan, R (2012) 'Cameron as Prime Minister: The Intra-Executive Politics of Britain's Coalition Government', Parliamentary Affairs 65 (4) pp 778-800

Heffernan, R (2012) 'Enacting elections' in Banks, M  and Barnett, C (eds) The Uses of Social Science, Milton Keynes: The Open University

Heffernan, R (2011) 'Pressure group politics' in Heffernan, R, Cowley, P and Hay C (eds) Developments in British Politics 9, London: Palgrave Macmillan.

Cowley, P, Hay, C and Heffernan, R (2011) 'A Landscape Without a Map: British Politics after 2010' in Heffernan, R (et al ed) Developments in British Politics 9,London: Palgrave Macmillan.

Heffernan, R (2011) 'Interest Groups and Interest Representation in UK Politics' in  Heffernan and Thompson (eds), Politics and Power in the United Kingdom (Second Edition), Milton Keynes: The Open University.

Heffernan, R (2011) 'Labour's new Labour legacy: Politics after Brown and Blair' Political Studies Review  9 (2) pp163-177

Heffernan, R (2009) 'British Political Parties' in Flinders M (et al ed) The Oxford Handbook of British Politics, Oxford: Oxford University Press

Heffernan, R (2008) 'Over to you, Mr Cameron? Symposium on Anthony Giddens 'Over to you, Mr Brown' Political Studies Review 6 (3) pp 277-284

Heffernan, R (2006) 'The Prime Minister and the News Media: Political Communication as a Leadership Resource', Parliamentary Affairs  59 (4) pp 582-598

A repository of research publications and other research outputs can be viewed at The Open University's Open Research Online.

Teaching interests

I have worked on a number of OU modules including Governing Europe; Power Dissent Equality: Understanding Contemporary Politics; Living Political Ideas; Politics, Media and War: 9 11 and its Impacts; and The Uses of Social Science. I am presently the upcoming production chair of a new politics level two module which will replace Power, Dissent, Equality. And I am also an editor of and contributor to the well established undergraduate British politics textbook, Developments in British Politics (Palgrave Macmillan 2002, 2003, 2006, 2011). A completely new ninth edition, Developments in British Politics 9, was published in the summer of 2011.

Research Activity

Research groups

NameTypeParent Unit
Centre for Citizenship, Identifies and Governance (CCIG)CentreFaculty of Social Sciences

Publications

UK party leaders are ‘preeminent’, but can also be ‘predominant’: Cameron and the Conservatives, 2005–2010 (2014-04)
Heffernan, Richard
British Politics, 9(1) (pp. 51-67)
There's no need for the '-ization': the prime minister is merely prime ministerial (2013-07)
Heffernan, Richard
Parliamentary Affairs, 66(3) (pp. 636-645)
Cameron as Prime Minister: the intra-executive politics of Britain's coalition government (2012-12-12)
Bennister, Mark and Heffernan, Richard
Parliamentary Affairs, 65(4) (pp. 778-801)
Labour’s New Labour legacy: politics after Brown and Blair (2011-05-01)
Heffernan, Richard
Political Studies Review, 9(2) (pp. 163-177)
The continuing shadow of the Thatcher governments (2009-12)
Heffernan, Richard
British Politics Review, 4(1) (pp. 8-9)
Leading a party is not the same as leading a country (2008-10-29)
Heffernan, Richard
Parliamentary Brief
Perhaps, Over to You, Mr Cameron? (2008-09)
Heffernan, Richard
Political Studies Review, 6(3) (pp. 285-296)
The Prime Minister and the News Media: Political Communication as a Leadership Resource (2006)
Heffernan, Richard
Parliamentary Affairs, 59(4) (pp. 582-598)
Exploring (and explaining) the British Prime Minister (2005-11)
Heffernan, Richard
British Journal of Politics and International Relations, 7(4) (pp. 605-620)
UK Privatization revisited: ideas and policy change, 1979-92 (2005-04)
Heffernan, Richard
Political Quarterly, 76(2) (pp. 264-272)
Why the Prime Minister cannot be a President: Comparing Institutional Imperatives in Britain and America (2005)
Heffernan, Richard
Parliamentary Affairs, 58(1) (pp. 53-70)
Prime ministerial predominance?: Core executive politics in the UK (2003-08)
Heffernan, Richard
British Journal of Politics and International Relations, 5(3) (pp. 347-372)
'The Possible as the art of politics': understanding consensus politics (2002-09)
Heffernan, Richard
Political Studies, 50(4) (pp. 742-760)
Beyond Euro-scepticism: Exploring the Europeanisation of the Labour Party since 1983 (2001)
Heffernan, Richard
Political Quarterly, 72(2) (pp. 180-190)
New Labour and Thatcherism: Political Change in Britain (2000-04-19)
Heffernan, Richard
ISBN : 9780333738979 | Publisher : Palgrave Macmillan | Published : Basingstoke, U.K.
Interest groups and interest representation in UK politics (2011-10)
Heffernan, Richard
In: Heffernan, Richard and Thompson, Grahame eds. Politics and Power in the UK (Third Edition) (pp. 105-128)
ISBN : 9781848734739 | Publisher : The Open University | Published : Milton Keynes, UK
Pressure group politics (2011-07-14)
Heffernan, Richard
In: Heffernan, Richard; Cowley, Philip and Hay, Colin eds. Developments in British Politics 9 (9th ed.) (pp. 174-194)
ISBN : 9780230221734 | Publisher : Palgrave Macmillan | Published : London
British Political Parties (2009)
Heffernan, Richard
In: Flinders, Matthew; Gamble, Andrew; Hay, Colin and Kenny, Michael eds. The Oxford Handbook of British Politics (pp. 441-461)
ISBN : 978-0199230952 | Publisher : Oxford University Press | Published : Oxford
The British Prime Minister: much more than 'First Among Equals' (2007-11)
Heffernan, Richard and Webb, Paul
In: Poguntke , Thomas and Webb, Paul eds. The Presidentialization of Politics: A Comparative Study of Modern Democracies (pp. 26-62)
ISBN : 978-0-19-921849-3 | Publisher : Oxford University Press | Published : Oxford
Tony Blair as Labour Party leader (2007-09)
Heffernan, Richard
In: Seldon, Anthony ed. Blair's Britain, 1997–2007
ISBN : 9780521709460 | Publisher : Cambridge University Press | Published : Cambridge, UK
The British Prime Minister: More Than First Among Equals (2007)
Heffernan, Richard and Webb, Paul
In: Poguntke, Thomas and Webb, Paul eds. The Presidentialization of Politics: A Comparative Study of Modern Democracies
ISBN : 978-0-19-921849-3 | Publisher : Oxford University Press | Published : Oxford, UK
The Blair Style of Central Government (2006-05)
Heffernan, Richard
In: Dunleavy, Patrick; Heffernan, Richard; Cowley, Philip and Hay, Colin eds. Developments in British Politics 8
ISBN : 9781403948427 | Publisher : Palgrave Macmillan | Published : London, UK
Political Parties and the Party System (2003-04-22)
Heffernan, Richard
In: Dunleavy, Patrick; Gamble, Andrew; Heffernan, Richard and Peele, Gillian eds. Developments in British Politics
ISBN : 9780333987049 | Publisher : Palgrave Macmillan | Published : London, UK
The New Labour Phenomenon (2003)
Heffernan, Richard
In: Chadwick, Andrew and Heffernan, Richard eds. The New Labour Reader
ISBN : 0-7456-2943-1 | Publisher : Polity Press | Published : UK
Leaders and followers: the politics of the parliamentary Labour party (2000-05-19)
Heffernan, Richard
In: Brivati, Brian and Heffernan, Richard eds. The Labour Party: A Centenary History (pp. 246-267)
ISBN : 9780333746493 | Publisher : Palgrave Macmillan | Published : Basingstoke, UK and New York, USA
Beyond Euro-Scepticism? Labour and the European Union since 1945 (2000-05-09)
Heffernan, Richard
In: Brivati, Brian and Heffernan, Richard eds. The Labour Party: A Centenary History (pp. 383-401)
ISBN : 9780333746493 | Publisher : Palgrave Macmillan | Published : Basingstoke, UK and New York, USA
Introduction (2000-05-09)
Brivati, Brian and Heffernan, Richard
In: Brivati, Brian and Heffernan, Richard eds. The Labour Party: A Centenary History (pp. 1-8)
ISBN : 9780333746493 | Publisher : Macmillan Press Ltd | Published : Basingstoke, UK and New York, USA
Developments in British Politics 9 (2011-07)
Heffernan, Richard; Cowley, Philip and Hay, Colin eds.
ISBN : 9780230221734 | Publisher : Palgrave Macmillan | Published : Basingstoke
Politics and Power in the UK (3rd ed.) (2011)
Heffernan, Richard and Thompson, Grahame eds.
Power, Dissent, Equality: Understanding Contemporary Politics
ISBN : 9781848734739 | Publisher : Open University | Published : Milton Keynes
Developments in British Politics 8 (2006-05)
Dunleavy, Patrick; Heffernan, Richard; Cowley, Philip and Hay, Colin eds.
ISBN : 9781403948427 | Publisher : Palgrave Macmillan | Published : London, UK
The New Labour Reader (2003-07)
Chadwick, Andrew and Heffernan, Richard eds.
ISBN : 9780745629438 | Publisher : Polity Press | Published : UK
Developments in British Politics (2003-04-22)
Dunleavy, Patrick; Gamble, Andrew; Heffernan, Richard and Peele, Gillian eds.
ISBN : 9780333987049 | Publisher : Palgrave Macmillan | Published : London, UK
The Labour Party: A Centenary History (2000-05-09)
Brivati, Brian and Heffernan, Richard eds.
ISBN : 9780333746493 | Publisher : Macmillan Press Ltd | Published : Basingstoke, UK and New York, USA