Denver Program

International Spring School on Public Policy - Denver Edition 2018

MONDAY  21th

Morning

The Course 1 by Michael Jones. Applying the Narrative Policy Framework. A Crash Course in Theory and Method (3h)

 

The Narrative Policy Framework (NPF) is a systematic approach to narrative policy analysis that allows both qualitative and quantitative methodologies. While developed only in 2010, the NPF has seen rapid adoption, appearing in academic journals such as Critical Policy Studies, Policy Sciences, the Policy Studies Journal, as well as being featured in Paul Sabatier’s and now Chris Weible’s classic Theories of the Policy Process, 3rd & 4th editions. This lecture offers a three-hour rendering of the NPF with the aim of providing students both breadth and depth sufficient to begin to apply the framework within their own research. Topics covered include an overview of the framework, experimental NPF applications, content analysis and the NPF, as well as qualitative methods and the NPF. The lecture culminates in an opportunity for students to actively engage some of the NPF’s commonly employed methodologies.

 

Afternoon

Student Research Presentations and Discussions (3h) 

Students will be divided into small groups led by one scholar. Students will give 15 minute presentations of their research projects followed by constructive commentary by the scholar and fellow students. The goal of these sessions will be to provide an opportunity to help students and the scholar to work together in advancing their scholarship.

 

Evening

Group dinner 

 

Tuesday 22th

Morning

Course 2 by Philip Leifeld. Discourse Network Analysis (3h).

 

Discourse network analysis (DNA) is a methodology for the analysis of policy debates using a combination of qualitative content analysis and social network analysis. Political actors make statements about policy preferences in newspaper articles or Congressional testimony, and these statements can be interpreted as a temporal, signed network of actors and concepts and analyzed using the full array of network-analytic methods. One of the main goals of discourse network analysis is to track the evolution or dissolution of actor coalitions around shared policy preferences over time in order to explain policy change. The first part of the lecture will describe the basic concepts and network transformations and show several empirical examples. The second part will introduce the software Discourse Network Analyzer, including the R package rDNA, and analysis in the network visualization program visone, and provide some advice on coding practices in empirical studies. The third hour will discuss advanced techniques (such as statistical techniques and simulation models) and the use of graph clustering for the identification of coalitions. Participants should bring their laptops with pre-installed Java 1.8, Discourse Network Analyzer, visone, R, RStudio, and rDNA if they would like to follow the computer tutorial part actively.

 

Afternoon
Student Research Presentations and Discussions (3h)

Students will give 15 minute presentations of their research projects followed by constructive commentary by the scholar and fellow students. The goal of these sessions will be to provide an opportunity to help students and the scholar to work together in advancing their scholarship.

 

Evening

Free

 

Wednesday 23th

Morning

Course 3 by Chris Weible. The Advocacy Coalition Framework : The Latest in Theory and Methods (3h).

 

This lecture focuses on advances in knowledge and methods in studying coalitions, learning, and policy change based on the Advocacy Coalition Framework.  For the first part of the lecture, we will cover the genesis of the approach and its development including the latest updates in its structure and form.   This first part will also cover the gains and gaps in knowledge under this research program from more than 30 years of research that spans the globe.  For the second part of this lecture, we will explore strategies for applying the approach. This includes the sharing and discussion of survey questions and survey instruments, strategies for research design, and how to apply the approach for theoretical and practical contributions.

 

Afternoon

Free

 

Evening

Free

 

Thursday 24th

Morning

Course 4 by Philippe Zittoun. The Constructivist Approaches for Studying Policy Processes: Contemporary Theories, Concepts, and Qualitative Methods (3h)

 

This lecture focuses on studying policy processes using a constructivist perspective, which considers as central the way all actors define, analyze, argue, persuade and oppose each other on public policy problems and proposals. We will examine how this perspective took on considerable importance in the traditional policy literature about problem agenda setting and how it can contribute  new perspectives on the trajectories of policy proposals inside bureaucracies, governments, interest groups, etc., along with the formation of coalitions around them and the conditions of success and failure for decision agenda setting. This presentation includes a discussion on qualitative methods and specifically on interviews to grasp the policy process. 

 

Afternoon
Student Research Presentations and Discussions (3h)

Students will give 15 minute presentations of their research projects followed by constructive commentary by the scholar and fellow students. The goal of these sessions will be to provide an opportunity to help students and the scholar to work together in advancing their scholarship.

 

Evening

Group dinner

 

Friday 25th

Morning

Course 5 by Tanya Heikkila. Understanding and Applying the Institutional Analysis and Development Framework (3h)

The Institutional Analysis and Development (IAD) Framework has a long and rich tradition in policy research, but it can be difficult for the novice user to apply. This lecture will begin with an overview of the foundations of the framework, including the structure of the “action situation”, the IAD’s rule typology, and its different levels of institutional analysis. The lecture also will introduce students to examples of how the framework has guided and worked alongside theories and models over the course of its development. The second part of the lecture will describe several methods of data collection and approaches to research design employed by IAD scholars. These include field studies, experiments, and document analyses, along with recently developed automated approaches to code the design of formal/written institutions. In discussing these methods, the instructor will ask students to share examples of research topics of interest to them and the class will work together to discuss opportunities for how they could apply the IAD framework in their own research. 

 

Afternoon

Grand Challenges Roundtable Session (2h)

The Spring School will conclude with a Grand Challenges Roundtable Session featuring the participating scholars who will be tasked with providing commentary on how to better position the field of public policy to better address the grand challenges facing humanity (e.g., climate change, refugees and migration, inequality/equity, political sustainability of our governing systems). The roundtable presentation will include active discussions with students.

 

Saturday 26th

Morning

Outing to the Rocky Mountains (additional fees may be required)