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"This book remains the gold standard for introducing students to key issues in policy analysis. I have used it many times in teaching Policy Analysis courses for both students and practicing policy analysts. The new edition adds a lot of helpful new material (e.g., discussions of Big Data) that will be helpful to students struggling to think systematically about how to assess policy alternatives.
?"From my undergraduate “Introduction to Public Policy” course through MPP client-based policy analysis courses, A Practical Guide for Policy Analysis has been essential reading. The book sets students on an eight-fold path from succinctly defining policy problems through advocating on behalf of a well-reasoned proposal. It provides structured thinking for students new to public policy and hands-on advice for those about to become policy professionals – all in tight, well-written, accessible, and interesting prose. It is a pleasure to see the growth in students that this text helps ensur
"Professors Bardach and Patashnik's "Eightfold Path" provides a wise and engaging how-to guide that meets the central challenge of policy analysis: combining scientific evidence and social goals to craft practical, real-world solutions."
“A Practical Guide for Policy Analysis still remains the most accessible and practical guide for those learning the craft of public policy analysis. It offers a clear road map to conduct effective policy analysis, and provides a terrific list of useful resources and helpful hints to do so. The newer substantive chapters in the book on design problems, gathering political support, and asking the right questions make clear that the authors believe, justifiably, that policy analysis is not a linear craft and that policy adoption is not strictly technical. The additional chapter on
“Bardach and Patashnik provide a strong analytical framework to guide the novice student in exploring policy options. The text is substantive yet approachable, providing a bridge between theory and practice that is meaningful for both undergraduate and graduate students of public policy.”
“Bardach and Patashnik’s A Practical Guide for Policy Analysis has become a genuine classic of policy analysis because it offers a versatile framework for confronting policy issues of all types—from persistent, long-standing problems to new, emergent challenges. Like every classic work, it contains different layers of insight for different readers. Junior analysts can use the eight basic elements as a primer. Intermediate analysts can add the design principles. Experienced analysts can deepen their practice by applying the eightfold path to increasingly complex problems.
“I was introduced to Bardach’s book when I was a graduate student and have begun using it in my courses for the past twenty years. The content and style is very accessible and informative for students who want to learn about practical skills that will help them in the workplace.”
“A Practical Guide for Policy Analysis is the essential text to introduce health policy students to the practice of policy analysis. The authors offer a persuasive argument for why defining the problem is the fundamental yet challenging first step of policy analysis; this lesson is critical for health policy, where issue rhetoric abounds. The book offers a step-by-step methodology that appeals to students’ need for structure, while reminding readers that the process of policy analysis—and politics—is inherently complex and non-linear.
Updated edition, more current examples.