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Public Policy
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Public Policy
Politics, Analysis, and Alternatives

Seventh Edition


December 2019 | 544 pages | CQ Press

“Kraft and Furlong provide students with a conceptual understanding of public issues and how the public policy process functions. This book also provides a forum for discussions of social, economic, and sustainable development issues; their characteristics; and impacts on human beings (citizens) as well as the environment. It will give students the needed tools to make informed economic and human development decisions that could lead to sustainable growth, human capacity building, and better lives.“
—Robert Dibie, Indiana University Kokomo

With the right information, we can develop public policies that work better.
 
All too often, public policy textbooks offer a basic grounding in the policy process without the benefit of integrating the use of policy analysis. Kraft and Furlong take a different tack. 

Public Policy: Politics, Analysis, and Alternatives, Seventh Edition helps students understand how and why policy analysis is used to assess policy alternatives. The text encourages them to not only question the assumptions of policy analysts, but also recognize how these strategies are used in the support of political arguments. The authors introduce and fully integrate an evaluative approach to policy to encourage critical and creative thinking on issues ranging from health care to climate change. From a concise review of institutions, policy actors, and major theoretical models to a discussion of the nature of policy analysis and its practice, Kraft and Furlong show students how to employ evaluative criteria in six substantive policy areas. Students come away with the analytic tools they need to understand that the motivations of policy actors—both within and outside of government—influence a complex yet comprehensible policy agenda.

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Boxes, Figures, and Tables
 
Preface
 
About the Authors
 
PART I: THE STUDY OF PUBLIC POLICY
 
Chapter 1. Public Policy and Politics
What Is Public Policy?

 
Defining Basic Concepts

 
Why Study Public Policy?

 
The Contexts of Public Policy

 
The Reasons for Government Involvement

 
The Practice of Policy Analysis

 
Conclusions

 
Discussion Questions

 
Keywords

 
Suggested Readings

 
Suggested Websites

 
Notes

 
 
Chapter 2. Government Institutions and Policy Actors
Growth of Government

 
Government Institutions and Policy Capacity

 
Federalism

 
Separation of Powers

 
Informal Policy Actors and Policy Capacity

 
Improving Policy Capacity

 
Conclusions

 
Discussion Questions

 
Keywords

 
Suggested Readings

 
Suggested Websites

 
Notes

 
 
Chapter 3. Understanding Public Policymaking
Theories of Politics and Public Policy

 
The Policy Process Model

 
Instruments of Public Policy

 
Policy Typologies

 
Conclusions

 
Discussion Questions

 
Keywords

 
Suggested Readings

 
Suggested Websites

 
Notes

 
 
PART II: ANALYZING PUBLIC POLICY
 
Chapter 4. Policy Analysis: An Introduction
The Nature of Policy Analysis

 
Steps in the Policy Analysis Process

 
Types of Policy Analysis

 
What Kind of Analysis Is Needed?

 
Conclusions

 
Discussion Questions

 
Keywords

 
Suggested Readings

 
Suggested Websites

 
Leading General Journals of Public Policy

 
Major Professional Newsweeklies with Policy Coverage

 
Notes

 
 
Chapter 5. Public Problems and Policy Alternatives
Problem Analysis

 
How to Find Information

 
Constructing Alternatives

 
Thinking Creatively about Policy Action

 
Conclusions

 
Discussion Questions

 
Keywords

 
Suggested Readings

 
Suggested Websites

 
Notes

 
 
Chapter 6. Assessing Policy Alternatives
Evaluative Criteria for Judging Policy Proposals

 
Using the Methods of Policy Analysis

 
Economic Approaches

 
Decision Making and Impacts

 
Political and Institutional Approaches

 
Ethical Analysis

 
Conclusions

 
Discussion Questions

 
Keywords

 
Suggested Readings

 
Suggested Websites

 
Notes

 
 
PART III: ISSUES AND CONTROVERSIES IN PUBLIC POLICY
 
Chapter 7. Economic and Budgetary Policy
Background

 
Goals of Economic Policy

 
Tools of Economic Policy

 
The Budget Process and Its Effect on Economic Policy

 
Economic Policy: Successes and Failures

 
Economic Issues and Challenges

 
Focused Discussion: Deficits and Debt

 
Conclusions

 
Discussion Questions

 
Keywords

 
Major Legislation

 
Suggested Readings

 
Suggested Websites

 
Notes

 
 
Chapter 8. Health Care Policy
Background

 
Major Government Health Care Programs

 
Other Health Care Policy Issues

 
Rising Health Care Costs

 
Managed Care Organizations

 
Reducing Health Care Costs

 
Quality of Care

 
Focused Discussion: Should There Be Greater Emphasis on Preventive Health Care?

 
Conclusions

 
Discussion Questions

 
Keywords

 
Major Legislation

 
Suggested Readings

 
Suggested Websites

 
Notes

 
 
Chapter 9. Welfare and Social Security Policy
Background

 
Social Security

 
Welfare

 
Focused Discussion: Can We Do Better? Addressing Poverty

 
Conclusions

 
Discussion Questions

 
Keywords

 
Major Legislation

 
Suggested Readings

 
Suggested Websites

 
Notes

 
 
Chapter 10. Education Policy
Background

 
Problems Facing Education

 
Education Policy Reforms

 
Higher Education Issues

 
Focused Discussion: Higher Education Affordability, Cost, and Value

 
Conclusions

 
Discussion Questions

 
Keywords

 
Major Legislation

 
Suggested Readings

 
Suggested Websites

 
Notes

 
 
Chapter 11. Environmental and Energy Policy
Background

 
The Evolution of Environmental and Energy Policy

 
From Consensus to Conflict in Environmental Policy

 
Major Federal Environmental Policies

 
Energy Policy

 
Focused Discussion: Climate Change and Energy Policy Alternatives

 
Conclusions

 
Discussion Questions

 
Keywords

 
Major Legislation

 
Suggested Readings

 
Suggested Websites

 
Notes

 
 
Chapter 12. Foreign Policy and Homeland Security
Background and Policy Evolution

 
Selected Issues in Homeland Security

 
Focused Discussion: Civil Liberties in an Age of Terrorism

 
Conclusions

 
Discussion Questions

 
Keywords

 
Major Legislation

 
Suggested Readings

 
Suggested Websites

 
Notes

 
 
PART IV: CONCLUSIONS
 
Chapter 13. Politics, Analysis, and Policy Choice
Policy Analysis, Citizen Participation, and Policy Change

 
Public Policies and Their Impacts

 
Policy Analysis and Policy Choices

 
Citizen Participation in Decision Making

 
Conclusions

 
Discussion Questions

 
Keywords

 
Major Legislation

 
Suggested Readings

 
Suggested Websites

 
Notes

 
 
Glossary
 
References
 
Index

Supplements

Instructor Resource Site
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“The text allows for students to understand and apply policy making to the most misunderstood programs—healthcare, education, and the criminal justice system.”

Tammy R. Greer, Ph.D.
Atlanta Metropolitan State College

“Kraft and Furlong’s Public Policy: Politics, Analysis, and Alternatives is an all-in-one, comprehensive approach to introducing public policy and analysis to undergraduate students with varying levels of interest and engagement. The text provides substantial breadth and depth between its covers in an accessible format for beginners, while providing guidance to additional resources for extensive study of specific topics. I’ve used the text as a student and instructor for 12 years and highly recommend its use for undergraduate students.”

Benjaman R. Schmidt
University of Wisconsin, Green Bay

“Kraft and Furlong provide students with a conceptual understanding of public issues and how the public policy process functions. This book also provides a forum for discussions of social, economic, and sustainable development issues; their characteristics; and impacts on human beings (citizens) as well as the environment. It will give students the needed tools to make informed economic and human development decisions that could lead to sustainable growth, human capacity building, and better lives.“

Robert Dibie
Indiana University Kokomo

Easy for students to understand and apply with useful graphics that highlight key points.

Dr Deborah Stine
Engineering Studies, Lafayette College
July 6, 2021

I have used Kraft and Furlong for several years. I like the framework the authors use to develop both policy content and analysis. Excellent text!

Dr Stephen King
Gvrnmnt/Hist/Crim Just Dept, Regent University-Virg Beach
September 17, 2020

I have been using the book for the last 11 years. The book is very easy to read with a lot of current examples.

Dr Biruk Alemayehu
Public Adminstration, Southern Univ At New Orleans
November 13, 2019

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