A Practical Guide for Policy Analysis: The Eightfold Path to More Effective Problem Solving by Eugene S. Bardach (Author)



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With his original eightfold approach, Bardach encapsulates more than 35 years of teaching students effective, accurate, and persuasive policy analysis. This bestselling handbook presents dozens of concrete tips, interesting case studies, and step-by-step strategies for the budding analyst as well as the seasoned professional. In this new edition, Bardach clarifies some of the book s exposition, paying particular attention to “design problems” and the choice of a “base case.” Up-to-date examples, including a new set of environmental problems, make the book even more engaging. Readers will also appreciate a sample document of real world policy analysis, a primer in how to “talk the talk” of policy analysis, and a cheat sheet of strategies for solving a host of policy problems. Read more

Review “Bardach’s Practical Guide is an extraordinary book. It presents an approach to policy analysis that is rigorous and flexible. Despite its welcome brevity, the book gives good reasons for its advice. The greatest strengths of the book are its emphasis on problem definition, its introduction to using The Matrix for evaluating policies, and its identification of key pitfalls, e.g., ‘Do not define the solution into the problem.’ Students appreciate the book while they are reading it and will draw on the insights and the skills for their entire careers.” –Michael Ash, Professor of Economics and Public Policy, University of Massachusetts Amherst”I wouldn t dream of teaching policy analysis to any group of students at any level in any country without this gem of a book. Gene Bardach has given us an introductory text in which highly experienced analysts find new insights, a no-nonsense practical guide that stimulates debates about theory, and that rarest of academic outputs–an easy-to-read, step-by-step manual that does not dodge the complexity, subtlety, and messiness of real-life policy craft. The eightfold path is to policy analysis what a perfect whitesauce is to French cooking–an essential building block.” –Karen Baehler, Scholar in Residence, School of Public Affairs, American University About the Author Eugene Bardach has been teaching graduate-level policy analysis workshop classes since 1973 at the Goldman School of Public Policy, University of California, Berkeley, in which time he has coached some 500 projects. He is a broadly based political scientist with wide-ranging teaching and research interests. His focus is primarily on policy implementation and public management, and most recently on problems of facilitating better interorganizational collaboration in service delivery (e.g., in human services, environmental enforcement, fire prevention, and habitat preservation). He also maintains an interest in problems of homeland defense, regulatory program design and execution, particularly in areas of health, safety, consumer protection, and equal opportunity. Bardach has developed novel teaching methods and materials at Berkeley, has directed and taught in residentially based training programs for higher-level public managers, and has worked for the Office of Policy Analysis at the US Department of Interior. He is the recipient of the 1998 Donald T. Campbell Award of the Policy Studies Organization for creative contribution to the methodology of policy analysis, and is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. This book is based on his experience teaching students the principles of policy analysis and then helping them to execute their project work.

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