The study of social and popular movements continues to attract great interest, but little is known of political activity which takes place outside of traditional political structures. Tnis volume looks at informal political action which arises when conventional frameworks, such as those provided by welfare states, are in crisis or decline. At such times the usual expectations about politcal action may not apply, so what actually goes on?
Greatly expanding the scope for research into collective action, this volume will be of great interest to students and researchers of politics and sociology interested in this important area.

Introduction: the context of collective political action, Ricca Edmondson; Part 1 Relations between context and action: knowledge and ontology; Chapter 1 Movement in context: women and miners’ campaigns in Britain, Karen Beckwith; Chapter 2 The merging of context into collective action, Matti Hyvärinen; Chapter 3 Technology and context: the impact of collective action on the development of knowledge, Irmela Gorges; Chapter 4 Social movement theory and the political context of collective action, Joe Foweraker; Part 2 Collective action in political context; Chapter 5 Shaping collective action: structure, contingency and knowledge, Chris Rootes; Chapter 6 Soil pollution, community action and political opportunities, Kees Aarts; Chapter 7 Context and interpretation in managing the long-term unemployed: implementing an ‘active labour-market policy’ in Dutch cities, Peter van Leeuwen, Wim van der Voort, Ben van den Brande; Chapter 8 Problems of collective action for associations of the unemployed in France and in Ireland, Frédéric Royall; Chapter 9 Neighbourhoods in the city: contexts for Part icipation in politics?, Dominique Joye; Part 3 Collective action: knowledge, power and democracy; Chapter 10 Part icipatory expertise and the politics of local knowledge: a post-positivist perspective, Frank Fischer; Chapter 11 Integrating contexts: are there general rules for contextualising political decision-making?, Rainer Schmalz-Bruns; Chapter 12 Knowledge, rhetoric and political action in context, Ricca Edmondson, Frank Nullmeier;