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Regular version of the site
Bachelor 2018/2019

Introduction to Policy Analysis

Type: Compulsory course (Political Science and World Politics)
Area of studies: Political Science
When: 3 year, 1, 2 module
Mode of studies: offline
Language: English
ECTS credits: 5

Course Syllabus

Abstract

The course is devoted to the discussion how the contemporary states function, who and how can influence the making and implementation of political decisions and why quite often the states’ intentions do not reach their aims. The class consists of three parts. The first part seeks to reveal what the state is and what are the possibilities and limits of its functioning. The second part discusses the main theories and models in designing and implementation of different policies. The third part covers the methodological underpinnings of policy analysis.
Learning Objectives

Learning Objectives

  • The main goal is to give representation of how the contemporary policy is making
Expected Learning Outcomes

Expected Learning Outcomes

  • student is capable of retrieving, collecting, processing and analyzing information relevant for achieving goals in the professional field
  • student is able to work in team
  • Student is capable of reporting the results of the information retrieval and analysis, academic or applied research she/he has conducted: - in various genres (including reviews, policy papers, reports and publications pertaining to socio-political subject matter); - and depending on the target audience
  • student is capable of executing applied analysis of the political phenomena and political processes: (a) by using political science methods and (b) in support of practical decision making process
Course Contents

Course Contents

  • What does policy analysis mean?
    What is public policy. What is policy analysis? Who needs it and why? The role of a political scientist in policy analysis.
  • Why state? State capacity and state autonomy.
    The role of state in public policy. State capacity as an ability to implement state decisions. State autonomy from interest groups. The role of state capacity and state autonomy in policy making.
  • Why state? Market failures
    Economic efficiency as a normative rationale behind public policy. Market failures. Role of the state in the prevention of market failures.
  • Why state? State failures
    Why sometimes state fails to prevent market failures and ensure efficiency? State failures inherent in representative government and bureaucracy.
  • Policy processes
    Policy cycle as a basic model of policy process. Stages of the policy process. Advantages and shortcomings of the policy cycle model.
  • Do policies determine politics?
    When policy affects politics? Policy feedback. Policy feedback mechanisms and levels.
  • Policy politics and advocacy coalitions
    The Advocacy Coalition Framework. Policy subsystem. The role of beliefs in public policy and coalition formation. Levels of beliefs. Advocacy coalitions. Coalitional resources. Paths to policy change.
  • Policy decision-making: windows of opportunities and policy learning
    The Multiple Streams Framework. Policy, politics and problem streams. Coupling. Policy entrepreneurs. Policy windows. Policy learning.
  • How to write policy papers?
    Different types of policy papers and their aims. Content and structure of a policy paper. What makes a policy paper efficient?
  • Statistics and experiments in policy evaluation
    Evidence-based policy making. The role of statistical and experimental evidence in policy evaluation. Politics of evidence-based policy making. Evidence-based, but still value-laden.
  • Qualitative policy analysis: interpretation, meaning and content
    Social construction and policy design. Qualitative methods in policy analysis.
  • Conclusions
    Summing up the course. Looking at public policy through different lenses. Theoretical approaches and real policy-making process.
Assessment Elements

Assessment Elements

  • non-blocking In-class Participation
  • non-blocking Tests
    There will be three short quizzes covering the material of the preceding lectures and seminars.
  • non-blocking Team project
  • non-blocking Final exam
Interim Assessment

Interim Assessment

  • Interim assessment (2 module)
    The cumulative grade is worked out by the following formula: 40%*in-class participation + 20%*tests + 40%*team project The final exam is in a written form. The final grade is worked out by the following formula: 60%*cumulative grade + 40%*final exam grade.
Bibliography

Bibliography

Recommended Core Bibliography

  • Cairney, P. (2016). The Politics of Evidence-Based Policy Making. New York: Palgrave Pivot. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=1203451
  • Knoepfel, P. (2007). Public Policy Analysis. Bristol: Policy Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=237148
  • Thissen, W. A. H., & Walker, W. E. (2013). Public Policy Analysis : New Developments. New York: Springer. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=537663

Recommended Additional Bibliography

  • Shapiro, S. (2016). Analysis and Public Policy. Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar Publishing. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=1194861