If you are a first-year student, consider the first-year seminar (PBPL 7) or Introduction to Public Policy (PBPL 5), which is a required course if you are interested in applying for our First-Year Fellows Program.
Policy Analysis and Local Governance (PBPL 48) is one of the gateway courses for our Policy Research Shop. If you are interested in learning more about the Public Policy Minor, click here.
PBPL 5: Introduction to Public Policy
Professor Ronald Shaiko, 13W:10
This course is designed as the gateway offering for students beginning to pursue a minor in public policy through the Rockefeller Center. The term will be divided into four main components:
I. The Nature of Public Policy: What is Public Policy, Who Makes It, and Why Study It?
II. Making Public Policy: The Process, Structure, and Context of Policymaking
III. The Policy Players: Institutional and Non-Institutional Actors
IV. The Policy Game: Rules, Strategies, Culture, and Resources
In the concluding section of the course, we will be pursuing specific policy domains—environmental policy, education policy, health care policy, welfare policy, immigration policy, and defense policy.
Dist: SOC; WCult: W.
PBPL 7: Leadership in Foreign Policy Decision-making (First Year Seminar)
Professor Timothy Ruback, 13W: 2A
Do heads of state matter when it comes to making foreign policy decisions? We certainly act as if they do and we vote as if they do. But how and when do they matter most? In this course, we will study the essence of foreign policy decision-making with a special emphasis on the sorts of decisions that leaders can and do make. As we do so, we will be introduced to a number of concepts that will help to explain the processes of foreign policy decision-making. These include the political psychology of leaders, the dangers of groupthink & crisis decision-making, and the role that various organizations play in setting foreign policy. Dist: SOC; WCult: W.
PBPL 48: Policy Analysis and Local Governance
Professor Margaret Post, 13W: 10A
This course analyzes the public policy challenges faced by local communities and serves as a gateway to the Rockefeller Center's Policy Research Shop. Particular emphasis will be placed on issues in urban areas, including education, crime, poverty, economic development, transportation, and housing. Throughout the course, students will use both their hometowns and towns in New Hampshire and Vermont to study how specific communities have attempted to address these challenges. The course examines the roles of various actors--citizens, non-profits, and government agencies at all levels--in effecting positive change in local public policy outcomes. Dist: SOC; WCult: W.
PBPL 81.5/SOCY 55: Poverty and Public Policy in the United States
Professor Matissa Hollister, 13W, 10A
More than one in ten Americans lives in poverty according to official statistics. This course explores the nature and extent of poverty in the United States and the role of the government in addressing poverty issues. How do we measure poverty? Why does poverty persist? Why is there so little political discourse about poverty in America today? How effective are various poverty alleviation programs? Dist: SOC; WCult: W.
PBPL 82.1/GOVT 85.12: Military Statecraft in International Relations
Professor Daryl Press, 13W, 2A
Finding answers for many complex foreign policy questions requires weighing a set of political goals against an estimate of the potential military costs and risks. The purpose of this course is to familiarize students with the missions and capabilities of military forces, and to teach them how to estimate the likely costs, risks, and outcomes of military operations. This course will use theoretical works and historical cases to familiarize students with some of the principles of air, ground, and naval operations. Students will use the tools which they learn in class to conduct a detailed military analysis that bears on an important current foreign policy question. No prior knowledge of military forces is needed for this class. Prerequisite: Government 5 or permission of the instructor. The instructor encourages seniors, juniors, as well as sophomores with strong writing and research skills, to enroll in this seminar. Dist: SOC or INT.
PBPL 84.2: Health Policy Reform
Professor Ellen Meara, 13W: 10A
The goal of the course is to analyze likely strengths and weaknesses of U.S. health reform to address three major challenges in the health care system: access, cost, and quality of health care. To do this, students will study key elements of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act enacted in March, 2010, and alternatives proposed by critics of the Affordable Care Act. We will consider how existing and proposed policy extends or differs from prior health policies to address enduring problems in health care. In addition to readings, class discussion and in-class exercises (debates and policy simulations), course work will incorporate brief exercises designed to introduce students to commonly used sources of health data, and analytical approaches. Students will explore one aspect of health reform in detail, preparing and presenting a short research project on an approved topic. Prerequisites - at least one of the following: Public Policy 5, Public Policy 26, or Sociology 28. Government 10, Economics 10 or similar course is helpful. Dist: SOC; WCult: W.
PBPL 91: Independent Study in Public Policy
Professor Ronald Shaiko, 13W, Arrange