Top journalists praise new edition of public affairs book

Justin Webb, the well-known presenter on BBC Radio 4’s The Today Programme, has described the second edition of the NCTJ’s public affairs textbook as: “A work of extraordinary range and ambition which brilliantly succeeds in laying bare the workings of our nation."

Justin Webb goes on to day that: “Above all else this is a readable, useable book; the information is accessible and the analysis is snappy and fair-minded.”

Michael White, assistant editor and former political editor at The Guardian commented: “If this compendious volume had been at my elbow, explaining how all the bits join together as I started out in journalism, many things would have been easier to understand and write about.”

While Alan Qualtrough, editor of the Western Morning News added: “The Coalition’s ‘Big Society’ idea of devolving social and economic policy to local stakeholders makes the thorough knowledge of public affairs essential for journalists. This clear and precise guide is the bedrock for any senior, trainee or industry practitioner grappling with the seismic events occurring in local and national government.”

The second edition of Essential Public Affairs for Journalists, published today by Oxford University Press, was written by James Morrison, a freelance journalist and writer, senior lecturer in journalism at Kingston University and an examiner and member of the NCTJ’s examinations board for public affairs.

It is the only textbook to combine coverage of central and local government specifically geared towards journalism students, trainees and journalists and is designed to map on to NCTJ-accredited courses. Offering comprehensive coverage of the workings of both central and local government, it provides all the information they will need to understand public affairs and to report with confidence.

The new edition has been fully updated following the 2010 general election and includes the latest details of the coalition government's policy agenda.  It has also been revised in light of the changes to the NCTJ public affairs syllabus, and remains the essential textbook for NCTJ-accredited courses.

The textbook is also supported by an Online Resource Centre with the following features:
• Regular updates - new developments in central and local government are succinctly summarised so that the book is always up-to-date
• News feeds - real life articles from different news sites are linked to via RSS
• Audio podcasts, tables and web links

Essential Public Affairs for Journalists by James Morrison costs just £19.99 (rrp £21.99) plus postage from the NCTJ online shop. A discount for bulk orders is available by contacting Shevon Houston on shevon.houston@nctj.com