Studying Public Policy

  • Simeon R
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In the last few years, the study of policy and policy-making has become one of the most fashionable branches of the discipline. It has spawned new university courses, an Institute for Public Policy Research, and several new journals, including Policy Sciences, The Public Interest, and most recently, Canadian Public Policy. The impetus to focus on policy, on what governments actually do and why, comes from a great many sources. Partly it may be a reaction against the so-called behavioural revolution which seemed often to lead us away from a concern with the stuff of politics. Partly it stems from a growing desire to be in some sense more "relevant" and to apply whatever knowledge we have to contemporary societal problems. Partly it stems from the desires of government themselves to be more systematic in their consideration and assessment of alternative pr0grams.l Policy research has also been given urgency by increasing pessimism about the ability of governments to cope in an era of "demand overload" and "the fiscal crisis of the state.""

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  • Richard Simeon

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