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Political Science
POLS 3250
Charmain Derferd

Textbook: Beyond Policy Analysis By: Pal Chapter 1: Policy Analysis: Concepts and Practice  Public policy o Citizens expect intelligent decision making and for those choices to flow from a general vision or ideology o Decisions must be guided by a framework o Definition of Public Policy: a course of action or inaction chosen by public authority to address a given problem or set of problems o Band-Aids and quick choices in emergency situations are not always reliable o Policies are instruments – tools to use to tackle a problem o Rationalists do not want values to be involved in policy making o Biggest value is public interest o Policy design is to balance different solutions to different clusters of problems - Three key elements o Problem definition o Goals o Instruments to achieve - Problem definition o Central element, without a problem defined there would be no policy o The more complex the problem the more exhaustive the definition and expensive the inquiry o The definition is rarely detailed in a policy statement which is ironic - Goals o General goals: healthcare’s maintenance and improving health is a general goal o Policy-specific goals: a certain province’s targeting at-risk youth through policy is specific - Instruments o You may chose to dissuade people from drugs through advertising, but who will advertise and how? o Can use information, taxation, set up agencies or regulate o Relies on what is considered legitimate o Can be limited by legal restrictions - Policy Consistency o Elements of a policy have to have internal consistency among the 3 elements o Vertical consistency – programs and activities in the name of a policy have to follow logically from it o Horizontal consistency – multiple policies have to seem consistent within a larger policy space - Policy is not the action itself just the course of action. Policy is the plan, not the execution or the actions of people involved. Policy Analysis - Definition of policy analysis: the disciplined application of intellect to public problems - Cognitive activity focusing on the outcomes of a policy - Reflection is just more than casual observation - Systematic and multidisciplinary o Defined stages, breaking it down into its parts – the 3 key elements - Three implications of such o Because it is in part scientific not anyone can do it well  ordinary people thinking about policy is not analysis  can we be sure that our experts leave their own views aside o there will be good and bad analyses  which means we need trained experienced individuals capable of reasoning  remove biases  gender based analysis – lens of gender to look at policies o as much as it is drawing on other sciences, policy analysis is a specific form of inquiry - types of reasoning o Normative – analyses policy with respect to values or ethics o Legal - analyses policy in terms of legislation o Logical – analyses using types of consistency to see if it makes sense o Empirical - analyses policy in terms of impact, outcomes, administration, and costs - Rational decision making model o Very basic can be applied to anything 1. Choose objectives 2. Consider alternatives 3. Outline impacts 4. Determine criteria 5. Apply models or scenarios 6. Implement preferred option 7. Evaluate consequences - Analysis demands these core assumptions o Expertise o Reliance on western science o Deductive logic o Measurement o Clear steps and stages - Criticisms of the rational model o Facts are a main point of the rational model but facts may constructed o Real world is incremental not rational o Policy analysis has relatively little influence on policymaking The Policy Movement  - Canada o Jacelyne Bourgon  clerk of privy council  identified development of policy capacity as a key priority in coming years  three initiatives she propelled  1. La Releve - up sizing federal public sector  2. policy research initiative - to enhance policy capacity  3. deputy minister task force - strengthen our policy capacity - report with recommendations - International o the organization for economic cooperation and development (OECD) - 34 member states established in 1961  core focus on economic growth wealth creation through markets and trade  interest in governance issues  global conversations about public management o SIGMA program works with EU to strengthen policy making and public administration o the world bank founded 1944  attention to governance and public capacity  values the input of the poor in developmental processes Conclusion  - policy making and analysis have to adapt to 3 key shifts which are: 1. the nature of some perennial policy problems has changed - global economy issues and US in trouble 2. key policy processes have changed - citizens want more say - gov departments smaller - people have access to more via internet - municipalities have more power - globalization 3. change in how governments see their relationship with private sector and civil society - light touch not heavy handed intervention until financial crisis in 2008 - core questions in policy analysis o What is the nature of the problem? o What are we trying to achieve? o How shall we go about addressing it? o How will we know if we were successful? Chapter 2: Modern Governance: The Challenges for Policy Analysis  - The context under which policy analysis operates has been changing - The key forces underpinning this change are: 1. Globalization 2. Financial crisis 3. Political culture 4. Governance Globalization  Economic Globalization - Dynamic process not static - Driving idea is free market capitalism - It has its own system, culture, technology and power relations - Development of a complex international trading system - World war II a host of organizations started to make an international system o Organizations  WTO previously GATT  IMF  World Bank  Bretton Woods Agreement o Logic behind the organizations was  To create a set of international decision making bodies to make regimes about dealing with international problems  To knock down barriers between countries for communication and trade - Human migration is a huge part of globalization - In the 1990’s inter provincial trade in Canada flattened and mostly everyone was trading more internationally than within Canada - Transnational corporations and global supply chains are two dimensions of economic globalization - Phases of multinational development o Export to foreign market goods created domestically o Production facilities in foreign markets o Transnational firms organize into global chains - Can lead to grim consequences such as losing American manufacturing jobs to china - Harder to protect domestic markets or home base - Global financial crises - Race to the bottom as everyone tries to do it cheaper and cheaper - Sometimes globalization can force standards up Cultural Globalization - Globalization relies on communication which is bound in culture - American penetration in the market and media means people are starting to become more similar around the world o Style is very similar, jeans and IPods are fashionable almost everywhere o McCulture - 2.1 billion internet users in 2011 o 13% in North America o 22.7% in Europe o 44% in Asia o 5.7% in Africa International Standards - Human rights conventions are key - United Nations established in 1945 to hold conferences in human rights equality and fundamental freedoms o Produced the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948 o More initiatives for certain groups - Global moral community emerging - Policy making has to take into consideration these standards as countries are often compared against one another in terms of standards Politics Of Difference  - Three elements set the scene for the shift in political culture 1. Rise of postmaterialism 2. Increase salience on “rights” 3. Emphasis on “difference” - Postmaterialism o Concern with rights and less with material culture o Lifestyle and social concern - Rights o Support for democracy o Need for participation - Difference o Individual vs group rights o Issues with treating everyone the same is that different groups need help to level the playing field and groups do matter o May differences are systemically oppressed o Multiculturalism in Canada needed o Universal rules will only further disadvantage certain groups o People are often identifying with non-territorial groups - Identification with non-territorial groups has implications o Potential for social fragmentation will increase need for social cohesion o “ways of life” thorny issue to deal with - Illustration 1: “reasonable accommodation” o Public complaint in Quebec about lack of Muslim integration o Commission founded to do research on accommodation and Quebec identity o Recommended accommodation and protection of French to reasonable degree and that there was no immediate threat to Quebec identity o Passed a bill to keep the cross and they refused to be neutral on religion - Illustration 2: Danish cartoons Mohammed the prophet in a magazine the western standard o Not breaking any Danish law or Canadian one o Only offensive to Muslims o Attacked using charter of rights and freedoms - People have issues with multiculturalism o Loss of liberal values o Economic costs o Challenge to cultures o Security fears o Mainly that ethnic diversity and immigration are eroding social solidarity - People have less trust, less difference, and less engagement with political institutions Governance and Public Management  - The deficit raised questions on how much the government should intervene and also how much the government actually has control over o Can they create jobs o Can they regulate money o Can they promote university to people - Balance budget reduce public debt with new management in 1990’s = New Public Management o More client focused service oriented system o Focus on management not policy o Efficiency o Competition and contracting out o Cost cutting o Output targets - Reinventing Governement book by Osborne and Gaebler o Reject hierarchy of government bureaucracies o Government is inflexible and unresponsive o 10 principals that say government is fine but it should act differently - Obama: Open Governement Directive o Transparency o Participation o Collaboration - Next step agencies to run as businesses o Origins in the Financial Management Initiative in 1982 o Decentraliza government - Charter Mark program to judge public organizations on their performance with customers/clients - Revolutions in public sector thinking o Blair Governement: 2002, customer satisfaction national standards expanded choice for customers, responsive o PM Cameron “Big Society”: public service to neighborhoods thourhg charities, accountable government competiion social engagement rather than state intervention - Canada o Alberta and ontarion led the way  Alberta with Deficit Elimination Act 1996  Ontario with Common Sense Revolution 1995 o Both committed to balancing budgets change governeemnt - Program Review to federal budget in 1995 - 6 tests o Serve public interest o Necessity of government involvement o Appropriate federal role o Public private partnership o Efficiency o Affordability - Getting government right 1997 Treasury Board - Results for Canadians 2000 Treasury Board o Citizen focus o Publis service values o Results o Money efficiency - Plans and priorities 2003 Treasury Board - Federal Accountbility Act 2006 Treasury Board o Restrict party financing o Tough on conflict of interest guidelines o Budget office o Appointment commission o Auditor general gets to follow the money o Make heads of departments accountable - Two new developments o Emphasis on thics and accountability o Renewal of publis sector focusing on human resources - By 2012 we hold only a few things still from NPM o Efficiency o Smaller government where possible o More work on measureing performance and service o Ethics is huge after sponsorship scandal - 2010 speech from throne announced cuts to help with financial crises - 2012 Commission on the Reform of Ontario Public Services o Cost cutting in every aspect o 362 recommendations to save money Conclusion - These changes affect policy o Emphasis on performance accountability service probity and efficiency o These things are impossible to avoid but they will continue to change as well  They can be handled differently by different governments Chapter 3: Problem Definition in Policy Analysis  - Definition is central to the entire process - Certain things have been ignored in the past as not being problems o Poverty in the US o Global warming environmental issues o Obesity crisis o Domestic abuse - So policy problems do not exist unless recognized and defined – made visible - Sometimes there is consensus on the issue and the solution to the issue so there is no controversy, such as with child pornography - Prostitution for example, people have many different opinions on if it should be legalized or not - People can see the same issue so differently which makes definitions subjective - The definition can be seen as a measure of the way things are versus the way they should be - You have to choose among definitions that serve different interests o Who is doing the defining o What are the elements of a definition o How are some issues chosen to be on the public agenda while others are ignored o What impact will the definition have on the next few stages of policy - Norms and standards are at stake when trying to define a desirable future situation o You need reality o The desirable future o And the discrepancy to make the problem - We need to notice the event first which means attention to it and it must hold value for you to pay attention to it in the first place - Sometimes there is indicators something is wrong and it is noticed by a majority - Indicators can be annual reports, stats, research, internet, think tanks o Some will have a vested interest in the definition being a certain way - Focusing events may happen which are sudden and call direct attention to a problem o SARS - We need indicators or measures to see if there is a problem Problem definition requires taking an indicator and answering three questions 1. What is the relation between indicator and phenomenon 2. How does the indicator shift causality 3. Should it or can it be solved and is it our responsibility as a government - Sometimes we can get well researched definitions and sometimes we can get poor definitions - You can tell with confusion or controversy in outcomes - Many techniques for problem definition - We may not have time so we give a brief policy image with some data and some emotion In Box 3.1 Pal Breaks down the different aspects of policy arguments and problem definitions. It is broken into Causality, severity, incidence, novelty, proximity, crisis, population, orientation,
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