Central European University A Program for University Teachers, Advanced Ph.D. Students, Researchers and Professionals in the Social Sciences and Humanities Summer University
July 5-30, 1999Course Director: László Váradi (Budapest University of Economic Sciences, Hungary)
Lance T. LeLoup
(Washington State University, Pullman, Washington, USA)
The significance of the course
The content of the course
First section – the topics of policy-making process; fundamental concepts, approaches, and typologies; the policy environment and ways in which political institutions shape the process of policy formulation and adoption; exploration of implementation as well as bureaucratic and judicial policy-making. Cases are drawn from contemporary policy issues such as budget, economic, health and social welfare, defence and foreign policies with actual policy-making examples which demonstrate how institutions and processes can affect outcomes.
Second section – empirical policy research cases drawn from the Czech Republic with background identifying the function, place, and organization of policy research, and methodology. Applicability of single method approaches, illustrations of complex research methodologies in policy formation and implementation. Participants will be required to formulate their own research design of selected policy problems.
Third section – a policy-analytic framework is introduced and its components are explained in detail. The rationale of this framework is to improve public policies by searching for socially desirable outcomes by using the concept of market failures and the other limitations of the competitive market in contrast to the concept of government failures. The concept and the operational effects of generic policies (tools for governmental intervention) will then be explained. This concept demonstrates how every policy intervention involves trade-offs – that is, it may correct certain failures in the public arena, but may suffer from inherent limitations and, hence create new problems. The craft of policy analysis is demonstrated by showing how the analyst can systematically compare concrete alternatives in terms of their impacts relative to a comprehensive set of goals (values).
Fourth section – the course magnifies one widely used approach to policy analysis by describing how benefit-cost analysis can be used to evaluate public sector programs and policies. After introducing the basic theory and concepts that underlie benefit-cost analysis, methods are described that are used to empirically perform benefit-cost analysis. The methods will be illustrated with studies of actual cases.
Fifth section – policy (program) evaluation of policy effectiveness by measuring outcomes. The role of evaluation and evaluation models, the methodology and standards of evaluation with selecting criteria and setting standards, measurement principles and tools, approaches to quantitative outcome evaluation. This part of the course concludes with a demonstration of techniques which aid further utilization of evaluation findings and factors relevant to policy implementation.
Last session – discussion about the development of public policy courses at the participants’ universities.
The length of the course is four weeks, twenty teaching days.
Requirements for participation in