what 3 reasons are there for gov't intervention in social problems?
1)economic-market failures 2)moral and ethical reasons- what's the right thing to do? 3)political- shift in public opinion? rise of social movement?
what are the 4 types of market failures?
1)emerging oligopolies/monopolies 2)externalities 3)information failures (why the FDA was established to ensure info to public) 4)inability to provide public or collective goods
positive externality/negative externality
positive- occurs when 2 partys interact and as a result, a 3rd party benefits and doesn't have to pay/put forth effor
negative-when 2 partys interact and as a result, a 3rd party is hurt/damaged and does not get compensation.
Discuss the 4 types of public goods and how they are categorized
pure private goods- a good that is private and for which there is no market failure
toll goods-can be jointly consumed, and exclusion is feasible. (ex. utility bill/cable bill)
common pool resources- cannot be jointly consumed and exclusion is not feasible. (ex. air/water/natural grazing lands... all unowned or "unowned by all")
pure public goods- can be jointly consumed and exclusion is not feasible. (ex. National Defense/public parks)
What is the "logic of collective action"
suggests that a single individual would be irrational to join an interest group when almost no personal gain follows
what are the main criteria for judging the merits of public policy?
Effectiveness- whether a current policy or program or on that is being considered is likely to work/achieve its goals
Efficiency- refers to what a policy proposal costs in relation to its expected benefits to society. Also, trying to maximize the benefit for the least amount of money.
Equity- refers to the consideration of what constitutes a fair or equitable policy choice
Political and Administrative Feasibility- whether or not an elected official/policy maker will support a policy proposal.
What are the effects of gov't growth and how does this act in improving governmental policy capacity?
-gov't policies affect most of what people do everyday -gov't growth has led to an entire occupational sector -the scope of gov't increases the likelihood of conflicting public policies and greater difficulty in addressing society's problems -policymaking in a large, complex gov't organization takes more time and effort to analyze policy process than a smaller gov't
the governments ability to assess, identify, and respond to public problems.
incremental policy making
adjustments made at the margins of existing policies through minor amendments or the gradual extension of a programs mandate or the group it serves.
discuss the evolution of federal/state relations and how this has affected public policy making and implementation.
18th century- dual federalism was intact and states dealt w/ education and transportation strictly. National gov't dealt with national defense, international trade only.
1930's- New Deal allowed corporate federalism aka collaboration on policymaking between the national and state gov'ts. This allowed many large scale federal programs to occur and work because block and categorical grants soon began becoming popular. Unfunded mandates were a downside.
How has decentralization of power affected public policy making and implementation?
the national gov't has realized that by giving more power back to the states that not all policy programs are suitable for all 50 states, what may work for Wisconsin may not work for Texas for many different reasons. (ex. different climates, culture, historical background, geographical differences)
How does the structure of the Federal Government affect policy making and implementation?
The number of policy actors within the USA gov't and their overlapping responsibilities make it difficult to figure out who has responsibility for any particular government action. Also, federalism has allowed lobbyists to have power in policy making.
Discuss "saliency and intensity" as factors in the policy process
The higher the "salience" or importance to voters, the more influence public opinion has on policy making.
Intensity- the more intense the movement or group, the more publicity which is drawn and the more sucessful the movement.
What are policy subsystems and issue networks?
Issue networks- hardly influenced by public opinion, policy making that involves congressional subcommittees, executive agencies, and an outside economic interest group. Policy making that occurs in a less formal setting or venue involves policy actors within a particular issue area. (very specialized)
How can policy capacity be improved?
the gov't can do a better job improving for emergency situations via policy making as seen from "Hurricane Katrina". Also, improving citizen participation could always be done. (MORE Public inolvement = MORE Policy Capacity)
Discuss the various "theories of politics and public policy" ELITE THEORY
Elite Theory- primary asssumption is that values and preferences of the general public are less influential in shaping public policy than those of smaller, unrepresentative groups of people or elites. Never one elite, many competing for spotlight. (ex. cultural elites and economic elites)
sees public as the product of a continuous struggle among organized interest groups. Tend to believe that power in the US political system is widely shared among interest groups, each of which seeks to access to the policy making process.
emphasizes the formal and legal aspect of gov't structure. A major tenant of institutionalism is that structures and rules make a big difference in the kind of policy process that occurs and which policy actors are likely to be influential in it. "institution" refers to both organizations and the rules that govern their behavior.
Rational Choice Theory
assumes that in making decisions, individuals are rational actors; that is, they seek to maximize attainment of their preferences, or further their self-interest. Actors could be voters, corporate lobbyists, agency officials, or legislators. The goal is to deduce or predict how individuals will behave under a variety of conditions.
Political Systems Theory
emphasizes the larger social, economic, and cultural context such as general preference for limited gov't or low taxes, in which political decisions and policy choices are made. Formal way to think about the interrelationships of institutions and policy actors and the role of the large environment.
What is an "instrument of public policy"
Policy instrument- an action take to address a particular issue or problem.
gov't decreases that either require or prevent citizens from doing something. Usually, regulations impose sanctions, such as fines or imprisonment, for failure to comply.
use of direct services or direct management of resources as instruments of public policy. Education, defense, public parks, and most municipal services, such as police and fire protection, are examples of policies that gov'ts implement by providing the service directly to citizens.
Taxing and Spending
gov't uses their ability to tax and spend to achieve policy goals and objectives. Also use tax policy to discourage or promote activities. (ex. cigarettes) Gov't can provide monetary funds to states as way of promoting activities (ex. Welfare)
using the market may be an explicit decision by gov't not to intervene in any way but instead to allow the law of supply and demand to work. (ex. Clean Air Act 1990) ---> market incentives---> gave companies credits to achieve lower emissions.
Education, Information, and Persuasion
educating citizens while persuading them to act in a certain way is a common tool. (ex. gov't asks public to support relief efforts after a natural disaster) however, public trust has been decreasing which causes effectiveness of this technique to lessen.
what types of policy do the authors discuss? distributive policies
distributive policies- individual programs or grants that a gov't provides without regard to limited resources or zero-sum situations. (where one group's gain is anothers loss) ex. college research grants/agricultural subsidies.
conflict is what makes these different than distributive. For every redistributive polciy, winners and losers are associated with its approval, making them easy to hold a party accountable. ex. Social Security/affirmative action
gov't restriction of individual choice to keep conduct from transcending acceptable bounds. (ex. consumer protection, providing environmental quality)
associated with regulation of specific industries and their practices, such as computer software and communication companies. (ex. licensing for radio)
protective regulation- protects general public from activities that occur in private sector (consumer protection/OSHA workplace safety)
what are the differences between root causes and pragmatic policy analysis?
root cause- the immediate cause of the problem at hand. address how this cause can be eliminated or fixed by changing or implementing a new policy.
pragmatic policy adjustments- adjusting an existing policy because it makes sense and is almost certain to work (ex. lowering speed limit from 70 mph to 65 mph because it was shown in a study to save lives)
Discuss the difference between comprehensive and short-term approaches to analysis
short term approach- less in-depth, quicker study of policy effetiveness. More effective when answers are needed about success of policy, sooner.
comprehensive approach- more in-depth, takes longer but provides more information with more precision but if the study takes too long, its findings may be irrelevant when released.
consensual analysis/ contentious analysis
consensual- mainstream public values and studies that are done most often due to being socially acceptable and less "radical"
contentious- research on a policy w/ a skeptical approach and is distrusting of info causes the one studying policy to act as a "moral critic" of the policy and considering new approaches
rational v. democratic analysis
rational- assesment of public problems and their solutions, often using economic analysis and other quantitative methods to find the most sensible solution.
democratic political process- aka citizen involvement with in policy process or everyday political activities. many believe citizens should have involvement within the policy process, however if citizens decide which policy to enact via vote; then the policy process done by gov't officials would suffer or be cut out completely.
cost benefit analysis
similar concept to "if i dont work for two hours, i lose out of two hours of pay that i could be making"
cost effective analysis
unlike cost benefit analysis it requires no measurements of the value of intangible benefits such as human lives; it simply compares different policy alternatives that can produce these benefits in terms of their relative costs.
risk analysis (assessment)
a close relative of cost benefit analysis. its purpose is to identify, estimate, and evaluate the magnitude of the risk to citizens from exposure to various situations such as terrorism, or natural hazards such as hurricanes. The more significant the risk is, the more government attention it receives.
a way to structure possible decisions under conditions of uncertainty. two or more alternatives can be sketched out in what is called a "decision tree." each branch of the tree portrays the consequences of choosing one of the alternatives, and each decision is associated with some degree of uncertainty and risk.
forecasting methods allow analysts to anticipate what the future is likely to hold based on their understanding of current conditions and how they expect them to change over time. When policymakers aim at public problems, they face a moving target.
an attempt to project or predict the consequences of adopting a policy proposal or taking some other form of action, similar to forecasting.
a criterion for evaluating suggested policy changes, and the extent to which elected officials and other policy actors are likely to support the change.
can occur before or after policy is actually implemented. used to determine what circumstances or problems arose which may have/could cause issues for the policy's implementation.
analysts use a number of methods to identify a program's goals and objectives, measure them, gather data on what the program is doing, and reach some conclusions about the extent of its success.
ethical policy action
the systematic examination of ethical or normative issues in public policy. determining if something could be tweeked within each policy, helping to ease the ethical boundary that was crossed.
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