The role of public policy is crucial in determining national welfare. Shifts in international relations, the global financial crisis, increasing expectations from citizens, changing domestic socio-economic context, and ideological imperatives are all affecting how policy is formulated and delivered in advanced economies.
At the same time, developing and rapidly growing economies are under increasing public pressure to ensure that economic growth leads to social opportunities and improved access to education, health and other public services.
This programme will develop critical perspectives on policy making and practice in different political and institutional contexts, focusing on both advanced and developing nations. The programme will emphasise the theories of policy analysis and will introduce students to policy making processes of negotiations and bargaining; struggles between nationality and politics; and the tensions between different policy approaches. Policy action and implementation involves a formal, sequential process of delivery. The programme will establish the principles of policy action and highlight the relationship between policy and practice. This approach enables students to develop skills that allow them to relate theory to practice in a way that provides more informed solutions to problems and opportunities in their workplace.
The aims of the programme are:
To provide students with an opportunity to gain systematic and in-depth knowledge in policy studies, to become aware of and understand current practices and to have knowledge of current scholarship To inform students of the current issues and debates in policy studies and raise their critical awareness of the developments in the discipline To advance students knowledge of synergies and complex relationships between politics and the policy agenda, between changing social, economic and political contexts and between policy formulation and practice To provide students with the opportunity to explore complex policy issues systematically and creatively so that they can make informed judgements at their workplace.
Students educated in a language other than English should have an IELTS score of 6.5 or above or an equivalent rating in another language testing system.
A range of assessment methods will be used, including coursework, class presentations and a dissertation.
The career paths open to graduates of this programme include working in the public sector (local and national government), international and European institutions, and national and international Non-Government Organisations. It will also be valuable for those already employed in these sectors who wish to enhance their progression opportunities.