Courses In: Government

Economic Policy Analysis

How to make decisions in light of pervasive uncertainties? How to deal with constant learning, experimentation, and streams of new information? How to think about entirely different incentive structures faced by decision-makers, and think through unintended consequences of one’s decisions? Economics, for better or worse, is organized common sense. No more, also no less. This class makes use of the toolkit given to us by economics and applies them to real-world policy problems.

Job Creation and Public Infrastructure

This course is designed to provide students with a detailed introduction to two imperative tasks facing federal, state and local government: (1) job creation; and (2) public infrastructure investment. This course is designed to promote increased awareness of the important link between public infrastructure and job creation, and to cultivate a deep understanding of a range of programs and policy designs that stimulate business growth and promote job creation.

Digital Communications for Advocacy and Politics

This course examines digital content marketing for nonprofits, NGOs and corporate philanthropy through a practical lens. Through case studies across industries, it explores professional digital marketing, and develops fundamentals for digital professionals including principles of design thinking, strategy, measurement, analytics and more.

Poverty, Inequality, and Policy (EMPA)

This course examines the nature and extent of poverty primarily in the U.S. but with a comparative perspective (developed countries in Europe). To start, this course will focus on how poverty is defined and measured. It will proceed to explore how conceptions of poverty are socially constructed and historically bounded; examine what the causes and consequences of poverty are and discuss how these are complex and interwoven; and show how people can experience poverty at different points in their life course—some groups experiencing poverty more so than others.

Environmental Infrastructure for Sustainable Cities

Sustainability requires the efficient use of resources.  The least carbon- and energy-intensive pattern of settlement today is in compact, walkable cities whose integrated networks of infrastructure that allows us to move, eat, drink, play, and survive extreme weather.  As our population shifts to urban and coastal areas, we will need to build more infrastructure systems to accommodate growth and to increase sustainability.  Yet we are building too little, too slow to maintain our existing infrastructure, let alone to facilitate next generation systems that will accelerate our society to a

Leading on Disability in Public Service

Advancements in awareness and understanding have led to greater equity and inclusion in society for people with disabilities. Developments such as the establishment of Disability Studies as an interdisciplinary field in the 1980’s and the introduction of the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) in 1990 are key milestones in this journey. However, these achievements alone do not guarantee the extent of attitudinal and behavioral change needed within our communities and organizations to remove the barriers and prejudices that remain.

Globalization and Global Governance

Globalization and global governance institutions have become hotly contested in some national political arenas, and political pressures around the world have grown on multilateral institutions to improve their effectiveness and value for money. As public debate and division on these subjects intensifies around the world, students of public administration and future professionals should be equipped to critically examine the evidence, theory and practice of global governance and globalization, and to apply this knowledge to solving real-world policy problems.

The Practice of Adaptive Leadership

What does it mean to lead? This course is an exploration of the ideas and theories developed at Harvard University by Ron Heifetz and Marty Linsky over the last 30 years about the work of leaders in mobilizing groups to act to solve complex and seemingly intractable problems. We will contrast Heifetz and Linsky’s notion of leadership with the more traditional theories of leadership.

Management Consulting for Public Service Organizations

Management consultants work in all corners of the public and nonprofit sectors on every imaginable topic—from organizational strategy to technology implementation, education to migration. But what is management consulting? Why do so many public service organizations rely on it? What skills and experience do you need to be a management consultant?  And how much good can management consulting really do for the public and nonprofit sectors?

Policy Advocacy Evaluation: Designing Rigorous and Useful Evaluations

This class explores the important evaluation area of policy advocacy evaluation. As development practice shifts to focus on the structural drivers of poverty around the world, and seek long-term social and institutional change, interventions increasingly involve shaping policies, programs and social norms. This class examines the theoretical and practical challenges of measuring influence on policy deliberation and implementation. It explores emerging approaches developed to provide rigor and actionable insights about what works and what doesn’t.

The Intersection of Operations, Policy, and Leadership (EMPA)

Policy, operations, and leadership are inextricably linked. This course aims to expose students to policy formation in a highly political environment, to operations management of systems shaped by state and local policy, and to the requirements and pressures faced by leaders wrestling with difficult problems. The course aims to build a toolbox of specific skills to assess stakeholder environments; to support analysis and decision making in a wide variety of contexts; and to appreciate the role of leadership, consensus building, and conflict management in driving policy outcomes.

Elections in Action

Elections In Action is for those that are interested in learning how a campaign works from start to finish. Whether one is working a local to national campaign the structure is still the same. This seven-session course will provide an overview and training in modern day campaign planning and implementation all the way from preparing as a candidate, staff roles, media, fundraising and Get Out the Vote strategies.