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Public policy textbooks need to give students a thorough explanation of the policy process, but why do so many relegate policy analysis to a single, final chapter—or not cover it at all? In the third edition of their innovative text, Kraft and Furlong take a decidedly different tack. They introduce and integrate an evaluative approach to policy throughout their text, encouraging critical and creative thinking on issues ranging from economic policy and the financial bailout to homeland security and natural disasters.
Public Policy starts with the basics and concisely reviews institutions, policy actors, and major theoretical models. The authors then discuss the nature of policy analysis and its practice, and show students how to employ evaluative criteria in six substantive policy areas. At its core, Public Policy guides students through policy alternatives, arming them with analytic tools for understanding how the motivations of policy actors—both within and outside of government—influence a complex, yet comprehensible, policy agenda. Professors will appreciate its authoritative, balanced approach, and its accessibility will engage students and keep them reading.
Important features for enhanced readability include:
Working with Sources and Steps to Analysis feature boxes that help students apply evaluative criteria;
Policy scenario chapter openers;
End-of-chapter discussion questions, suggested readings and websites, and keyword lists;
A wealth of tables, figures, charts, and photos; and
A helpful keyword glossary in the appendix.
In addition to updating throughout all chapters to account for recent events, issues, and policy debates through the end of the Bush presidency, the third edition includes expanded and new coverage of:
the mortgage crisis, financial bailout, and ensuing recession;
the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq;
the use of private contractors for military support and operations;
homeland security and its implications for civil liberties;
national energy policy and high gasoline prices, including proposals for increased offshore drilling;
climate change issues and politics;
the government’s capacity to handle natural disasters, such as Hurricanes Katrina, Gustav, and Ike; and
immigration controversies, including construction of fencing along the U.S.-Mexican border.
PART I. THE STUDY OF PUBLIC POLICY Public Policy and Politics What Is Public Policy?
Defining Basic Concepts The Contexts of Public Policy The Reasons for Government Involvement Why Study Public Policy?
The Practice of Policy Analysis Government Institutions and Policy Actors Growth of Government Government Institutions and Policy Capacity Federalism Separation of Powers Informal Policy Actors and Policy Capacity Improving Policy Capacity Understanding the Politics of Public Policy Theories of Politics and Public Policy The Policy Process Model Instruments of Public Policy Policy Typologies PART II. ANALYZING PUBLIC POLICY Policy Analysis: An Introduction The Nature of Policy Analysis Steps in the Policy Analysis Process Types of Policy Analysis What Kind of Analysis Is Needed?
Public Problems and Policy Alternatives Problem Analysis How to Find Information Constructing Alternatives Creative Thinking about Policy Action Assessing Policy Alternatives Evaluative Criteria for Judging Policy Proposals Using the Methods of Policy Analysis Economic Approaches Decision Making and Impacts Political and Institutional Approaches Ethical Analysis PART III. ISSUES AND CONTROVERSIES IN PUBLIC POLICY Economic and Budgetary Policy Background Goals of Economic Policy Tools of Economic Policy The Budget Process and Its Effect on Economic Policy Economic Policy: Successes and Failures Future Economic Issues and Challenges Focused Discussion: How to Address the Budgetary Shortfall Health Care Policy Background Major Government Health Care Programs Rising Health Care Costs Managed Care Organizations Reducing Health Care Costs: Beyond HMOs Quality of Care Focused Discussion: Should There Be Greater Emphasis on Preventative Health Care?
Welfare and Social Security Policy Background Social Security Welfare Focused Discussion: We've Reformed Welfare, Now What? Addressing Poverty Education Policy Background Problems Facing Education Higher Education Issues Education Policy Reforms Focused Discussion: School Testing and Educational Quality Environmental and Energy Policy Background The Evolution of Environmental and Energy Policy From Consensus to Conflict in Environmental Policy Major Federal Environmental Policies Energy Policies Focused Discussion: Climate Change and Energy Policy Alternatives Foreign Policy and Homeland Security Background and Policy Evaluation Selected Issues in Homeland Security Focused Discussion: Civil Liberties in an Age of Terrorism PART IV. CONCLUSIONS Politics, Analysis, and Policy Choice Public Policies and Their Impacts Policy Analysis and Policy Choices Citizen Participation in Decision Making Conclusions