How does the decision-making process work in the United Kingdom?
The United Kingdom has a Prime Minister and the cabinet as the supreme decision making body. But, I feel it's very difficult to get the general pattern or process and who can participate in the decision-making-process.
I also ask for the referrence so I could get further information.
You quite rightly state that it is the Cabinet which has the last say in decision-making in UK politics. It is important to note that the Cabinet does include members from parties other than the elected party - at this time the Conservative Party in order to reach a broader spectrum.
It has, in recent years, become common practice to include non-Cabinet members in meetings which again provides a more general consensus when it comes to providing advice for any ultimate decision.
Due to the vastness of any process involving decision-making and the need for expertise, it would be foolish and undemocratic to make any decisions without guidance and so there are many smaller groups which meet and upon whose advice, people are better served as first-hand knowledge is crucial to EFFECTIVE decision-making.
Cabinet may ultimately make the decision but it is influenced by groups such as The House of Commons (where the Prime Minister 'sits'), The House of Lords, various unspecified pressure groups (depending on the decision being made),and other senior 'civil servants'; those with specific expertise that could assist with decision-making.
Sub-committees play a pivotal role as do personal advisors - often favored over more formal choices.Trust is a big issue.
Decisions made by the Cabinet, answerable to Parliament as a whole, are taken collectively and ministers are accountable for any consequences. A minister who has an opposing view from any parliamentary decisions will, more than likely excuse himself from office. In the UK, open debate is encouraged, the
process is open, inclusive and all members should feel part of the process.
One of the major differences between a system like the UK which has a Prime Minister and the US with a President is that the Prime Minister is duty-bound to take decision- making as a collective decision whereas the president (of the US for example), may do, but is NOT required to, obtain collective consensus.
The EU (European Union), plays a big role;, not in the actual decision-making process but because any decisions must fit in with EU legislation.
All these exist to ensure 'fair' and democratic decisions.