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Fall 2013 - 63505 - PA383C - Policy Development

Shaping Defense Policy

Instructor(s): Dorn, Edwin
Unique Number: 63505
Day & Time: Th 9:00 am -12:00 pm
Room: SRH 3.220
Waitlist Information:For LBJ Students: UT Waitlist Information
Course Overview

This course acquaints students with how public policy develops and is adopted in the American governmental system. It is normally taken during the first year. The course helps students understand the different settings in which policy develops and the factors that influence its development. Each section of the course uses different substantive policy concerns such as social security, school desegregation, resource and environmental regulation, and national health programs to explore how individuals and institutions initiate and/or give legitimacy to public policy, including the executive and legislative branches, the courts, interest groups, and individual citizens. The course also covers the dynamics of the policy process by focusing on the roles of and relationships among various levels of government and the concepts and models used to describe these aspects of policy development. The role of ideas, concepts, and formal methods of analysis in policy development is discussed. Reading assignments and class discussion focus on case studies, legislative hearings, policy-issue briefs, court decisions, and theoretical works which highlight and explain the development of particular public policies.

Section Description

The Department of Defense (DoD) is a large, complex, and highly consequential enterprise. It spends more than $600 billion a year and employs more than three million people, and its activities have major domestic and international ramifications.

This graduate level seminar focuses on the processes by which national security goals are translated into defense policies and programs. The objectives of the course are to (a) help graduates who take defense-related jobs to orient themselves inside the national security establishment, whether they are working in the Pentagon, at OMB, on Congressional staff, or with a DoD contractor, and (b) use DoD as an example of the way in which policies are developed and implemented in large organizations.

Principal Texts

  • Amos A. Jordan, William J. Taylor, Jr. and Michael J. Mazarr, American National Security (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2009). Buy.
  • Lawrence J. Korb, et al, Building a Military for the 21st Century, published on-line by the Center for American Progress. Available on Blackboard.
  • Barbara A. Bicksler, Curtis L. Gilroy and John T. Warner, eds., The All-Volunteer Force: Thirty Years of Service (Dulles, VA, Brassey’s, 2004). Buy.