While people profess a disdain for politics, in a democracy politics is the primary vehicle for citizens to influence the decisions and decision makers that shape public policy at every level. This widely acclaimed work provides an overview of public policymaking in all its aspects along with basic information, tools, and examples that will equip citizens to participate more effectively in the policymaking process. It is intended for use in internships and service-learning programs, but will serve equally as a resource for any organized effort to involve citizens in community service and the exercise of civic responsibility. This updated edition includes an all-new case study on the issue of immigration, and all other case studies have been revised.
Foreword; Preface; Acknowledgments; 1. The Public Policymaking Process and How It Relates to Our Lives; The Public Policymaking Framework; What Public Policy Is - And Is Not; Constitutionalism: The Architecture of Public Policymaking; Where Public Policies Are Made: Vertical Relationships; Does Citizenship Matter?; What Does Citizenship Mean?; Practicing Citizenship Through Public Policy Analysis and Advocacy; Case Study: Immigration Reform; Reflection; Student Projects; Discussion Questions; Notes; 2. Identifying Public Policy Issues; Triggering Mechanisms: Indicators for Determining Issues; Deciding What Is Important - How and Why; Doing Research; Considering What to Do; Case Study: Community Development Project; Reflection; Student Projects; Discussion Questions; Notes; 3. Developing a Public Policy Proposal: Inventing the Better Lightbulb; Connecting Issues with Public Policymakers; Clarifying Objectives; Inventing the Better Lightbulb; Doing a Reality Check; To Influence or Not to Influence - That Is the Question; Case Study: Campus Security; Reflection; Student Projects; Discussion Questions; Notes; 4. Taking Action in the Political World: How to Advocate a Public Policy; Surveying the Policymaking Landscape; Preparing a Plan of Action Carefully - and One Step at a Time; Making the Most of Your Opportunity; Public Policymaking as Complex Activities; Case Study: Campaigning for a Watershed Tax District; Reflection; Student Projects; Discussion Questions; Notes; 5. Implementation: Carrying Out Decisions and Making Them Stick; The Art of Implementation; Bureaucracies as Implementation Agents; Keeping Your Hand in the Implementation Mix; Case Study: Implementing a New Policy on Racial Profiling; Reflection; Student Projects; Discussion Questions; Notes; 6. Evaluation: Does the Policy Make Sense?; Who Evaluates, and Why?; Evaluation: Not as Easy as It Looks; Comparing Outcomes with Intentions; One Form of Evaluation Every Policymaker Wishes to Avoid; Some Final Tips; Conclusions; Case Study: Charter Schools; Reflection; Student Projects; Discussion Questions; Notes; 7. Participation, Politics, and Policymaking: Putting It Together; Some of What You May Have Learned; The Most Important Evaluation of All; Some Final Thoughts (from the Soapbox); Notes; Appendix A: Glossary; Appendix B: Recommended Government Documents; Appendix C: Recommended Readings; Appendix D: Recommended Web Sites as Research Source Materials; Index; About the Author.