The major project in the course is a public policy theory paper in which you apply course materials to a policy area (i.e., a model, theory, framework), which could include a topic relevant to your own interests and degree track (e.g., ocean policy, forest policy, water policy, health policy, rural policy, etc.). Length expectations will be discussed in class. The paper is worth a maximum of 300 points. Papers should use APA citation format, have proper grammar and spelling, and presents a proper introduction. If there are multiple spelling errors, bad grammar, or a failure to communicate the thrust of your paper in the introduction, I will not read the rest of the paper. An Initial Policy Theory Paper statement (1-2 pages plus outline) is due in class on January 16. This statement should look like a memo and include the topic, paper outline, proposed policy framework/theory, and at least 5 references on the topic. Failure to submit the statement will result in a lower final score. THE FINAL PAPER IS DUE March 14 BY 6:00 PM (Black Board submission)).
Your analysis should include the components below. In each case it is essential that you draw on and cite relevant course and other materials:
1. Introduce the topic and the issues raised: background, a quick overview of what has happened (e.g., on the agenda, passed, being implemented; or put on agenda but failed to pass), current status, AND what policy framework/theory/model you will use and why it is appropriate for you issue area. Failure to apply a policy framework/theory/model will lead to a failing score.
2.Examine the emergence of that topic as an issue, that is, agenda setting, including relating it to interests and ideas of important political participants. In addition, consider groups, if any, who might logically have been participants but who appear not to have been involved and examine reasons for non-involvement.
3. Policy development and adoption or non-adoption: Among the topics you should consider are the roles of various groups and individuals, the likely role of such analytic methods as cost-benefit-analysis and other methods discussed as part of policy development.
4. Policy implementation-if the policy was adopted-and examination of implementation successes and limits. Obviously this cannot be applied to policies that were not adopted.
5. Policy evaluation, whether or not the policy was adopted. If adopted, what evaluations and adjustments; if not adopted, what evaluation of the continuing “problems” addressed by the proposals.
6. Summary: an overall analysis of the policy area in terms of the themes, issues, and approaches developed in the course. Did your theory/framework/model explain developments for your policy topic?
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