L4 Intro to Pub Policy Spring 2008

L4 Intro to Pub Policy Spring 2008 - Introduction to Public...

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Unformatted text preview: Introduction to Public Policy Lecture 4 January 16, 2008 Pol 1101 Introduction to Public Policy • What is Public Policy? Read Kraft and Furlong Chapter 1 • Public policy – a social science • Social science – the belief (or hope) that by discerning general laws of social processes we will better understand our social environment What is the state? • It is a concept, an idea. It refers to the source of all government authority • In reality: a complex arrangement of institutions and processes that have authority and legitimacy • Key building block is legitimacy – hence the importance of popular consent Legitimacy and Governance Two main questions • Legitimacy - the sources of authority, the right of a government to rule and the duty of citizens to obey. But w hat happens when a government loses legitimacy? The war in Iraq? • Governance - the ability of a state regime to execute public policies, to achieve efficient and coordinated public administration. But what happens when a government cannot execute public policy? Immigration? Health care? What is Public Policy? • Public policy is an intentional course of action followed by government in dealing with some problem or matter of concern. • Public policies are government policies based on law, and backed by sanctions - either rewards or punishments. Examples include Acts of Congress, executive orders, and judicial decisions. • Individuals, groups and even government agencies that do not comply with policies can be penalized through fines, loss of benefits, even jail. • Policies develop over time. More than a legislative decision to enact a law or a presidential decision to issue an executive order – the level of enforcement is also key. Implementation involves providing incentives or disincentives for certain behaviors Six Theories or Models 1. INSTITUTIONAL/BUREAUCRATIC MODEL 2. ELITE-MASS MODEL 3. INTEREST GROUP/EQUILIBRIUM MODEL 4. PLURALIST MODEL 5. SYSTEMS MODEL 6. STAGES MODEL 1. INSTITUTIONAL/BUREAUCRATIC MODEL • Concentrates on the traditional organization of government. • Describes the duties and arrangements of bureaus and departments. • Considers constitutional provisions, administrative and common law, and judicial decisions. • Tends to focus on formal arrangements 1. INSTITUTIONAL/BUREAUCRATIC MODEL (continued) • Bureaucratic theory argues that all institutions, governmental and non-governmental, have fallen under the control of a large and ever- growing bureaucracy that carries out policy on a day-to-day basis using standardized procedures. • The growing complexity of modern organizations has empowered bureaucrats, who gain dominance as a consequence of their expertise and competence. Eventually power is wrested from others, especially elected officials. 2. ELITE-MASS MODEL • Unequal distribution of power in society is the norm • All important decisions in society are made by the “chosen few”, who govern a largely passive mass • Policy flows downward from the elite to the mass, who...
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This note was uploaded on 04/07/2008 for the course POL 1101 taught by Professor White during the Spring '07 term at Georgia Tech.

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L4 Intro to Pub Policy Spring 2008 - Introduction to Public...

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