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COURSE NUMBER: POLI 327
COURSE TITLE: PUBLIC POLICY ANALYSIS
NAME OF INSTRUCTOR: Dr John Hiemstra
CREDIT WEIGHT AND WEEKLY TIME DISTRIBUTION: credits 3 (hrs lect 3 - hrs sem 0 - hrs lab 0)
CALENDAR DESCRIPTION: This course is an introduction to themes and methods in policy studies. The course examines the practical and normative problems facing Canadian governments in initiating, formulating, enacting, and implementing policies. Special attention will be given to certain contemporary policy issues.

This course is considered a Canadian Studies course for purposes of King's B.Ed. (AD)

Prerequisite: POLI 205
REQUIRED TEXTS: Andrea Olive, The Canadian Environment in Political Context, U of Toronto Press, 2016.
Lydia Miljan, Public Policy in Canada: An Introduction, Fifth Edition, Oxford U. Press, 2008.
MARK DISTRIBUTION IN PERCENT:
Written assignment "Policy Briefing Note"10%
Midterm25%
Written assignment "Major Policy Paper"25%
Class participation10%
Final Exam30%
100%
COURSE OBJECTIVES:
  • to understand the policy-making process and to engage in public policy analysis
  • to write “briefing notes,” and research and write a “policy recommendation” or “policy analysis” paper
  • to engage in thoughtful, critical and civil discussion of public issues and policies
  • to understand major theories of policy-making and the contours of the sub-discipline “policy studies”
  • to understand how philosophical and religious worldviews, including Christian perspectives, influence policy making, public policies, and analytical theories
LECTURE TOPICS:
  • PART I: WHAT IS PUBLIC POLICY?  WHAT DOES IT DO IN SOCIETY?
    • Introduction
    • Establishing basic concepts: What does public policy do in and to society?
      • Government, politics, policy, policy analysis
    • The Challenging context for contemporary policy analysis
      • Globalization, political culture, and governance
      • The problem of ‘normal’ - changing policy in an assumed world…
  • PART II.  HOW IS POLICY MADE?  THE POLICY-MAKING ‘CYCLE’
    • The Policy Cycle and Canada’s Political System and Institutions
    • Anatomy of a Public Policy: Problem definition and agenda setting
      • Problem identification
      • Problem definition 
      • Agenda setting
    • Policy design and "instrument choice" – the policy tool box
      • Case Study? Designing moral policy: redefining marriage?
      • Interconnection of policies – e.g. Child Care Policy: (?) plotting out the interlinkages of Social, Economic, and Environmental policies
    • Policy implementation
      • Case study? Plurality and School Policy in Edmonton
      • Case study? Wilderness preservation in Alberta: Special Places 2000
    • Policy communities and networks: 
      • The players, the political policy ‘game,’ and explanations
    • Theories of public policy-making
      • Case study? CASA: Clean Air Strategic Alliance
    • Evaluating public policy
      • Cost – benefit analysis and beyond…
      • Case study: (?) ‘Ethical oil’
  • PART III: additions, reconsiderations, trends, and conclusions
    • The nature of a “policy field” [vs. single issues vs. integral policy] e.g. Environmental, Health, Macroeconomic, Social, Family, Aboriginal, Moral, Pluralism, etc.
    • Policy making under pressur
    • Policy Communications and Conclusions: rethinking tools, ethics, the policy process


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