Contacts | Program of Study | Program Requirements | Summary of Requirements | Grading | Honors | Courses

Department Website: http://pbpl.uchicago.edu

Program of Study

Public Policy Studies is a multidisciplinary major grounded in the social sciences, with substantial inputs from economics, sociology, political science, and law, among other disciplines. The major recognizes that public issues are not neatly contained within traditional disciplinary boundaries and that analysts possessing a broad range of social scientific understanding, quantitative expertise, and communication skills are well placed to contribute to improved public policies. Public Policy involves direct contact with policy problems, ensuring that academic speculations are well-informed and connected to real-world conditions.

The Public Policy Studies major strives to put analysis before advocacy, stressing that compelling policy analysis is a central component of effective advocacy. We aim to be open and helpful to students of all political persuasions and challenge students to rethink clichéd responses to policy problems. The program of study for the BA degree in Public Policy Studies is designed to introduce students to policy analysis and implementation, equip them to use quantitative and economic techniques and methods, train them in policy research, and give them a thorough grounding in one or more specific policy areas.

The program also encourages students to undertake an internship experience either during the academic year or during the summer. PBPL 29600 Internship: Public Policy offers academic course credit for students completing an approved, policy-oriented internship.

Students should contact the program administrator with questions about meeting requirements for the Public Policy Studies degree.

Program Requirements

The suggested sequence described below is typical, but many other variations are possible. There is flexibility within the program regarding when required courses can be taken.

First and Second Years

During their first or second year, students should take two quarters of calculus plus STAT 22000 Statistical Methods and Applications or STAT 23400 Statistical Models and Methods.

Many students take the following required three-quarter sequence in their second year, although sometimes students defer taking one or more of these courses until later. Taking the courses in the same year is not required and the courses may be taken in any order.

PBPL 22100Politics and Policy100
PBPL 22200Public Policy Analysis100
PBPL 22300Policy Implementation100

Students are required to take either PBPL 20000 Economics for Public Policy or ECON 20000 The Elements of Economic Analysis I; completion of one of these two courses is a prerequisite for the sequence course PBPL 22200 Public Policy Analysis. PBPL 20000 Economics for Public Policy assumes no prior economics training, whereas ECON 20000 The Elements of Economic Analysis I requires ECON 19800 Introduction to Microeconomics or other prior training in microeconomics.

Third Year

Students typically complete the courses that follow in their third year.

Quantitative Methods

Students are required to take PBPL 26400 Quantitative Methods in Public Policy.

Courses in an Area of Specialization

Students should identify their area of specialization and submit a proposal for their program of study to the program administrator by the end of Winter Quarter in their third year. Students are required to complete three substantive policy courses that make up a specialization in a public policy field. Students may meet the specialization requirement in one of two ways: (1) by taking three courses that thematically connect (e.g., courses in urban politics, urban economics, and urban society would count as an urban specialization; or courses in international relations, international finance, and history of the European Union might be an international specialty); or (2) by taking three courses beyond the introductory course in one discipline other than public policy (e.g., economics, political science, sociology, statistics). Courses that satisfy the area of specialization requirement do not have to be listed or cross-listed as public policy courses; however, these courses should involve a substantial policy component. Please see the Public Policy Studies website for examples of some specialization courses: pbpl.uchicago.edu/page/areas-specialization.

Research Practicum

Students must fulfill a two-quarter research program. One of the quarters must be drawn from a “Methods” course, and the other quarter must be drawn from a “Windows” course, where the terminology reflects the idea that such a course represents a window from the ivory tower into the “real world.” Most students will fulfill this requirement through the two-quarter “practicum” sequence PBPL 26200-26300 Field Research Project in Public Policy I-II. Each sequence is designed to teach research methods (e.g., focus groups, community surveys, GIS mapping) in a hands-on way. Many of the practicums in the past have involved collective work on a real-world policy problem; see, for example, some final reports at cprt.uchicago.edu.

Alternatives to one or both quarters of PBPL 26200-26300 Field Research Project in Public Policy I-II can be drawn from the Methods and Windows courses listed below. Students may petition the program director for permission to fulfill either their Methods or Windows requirement (or both) with courses that are not listed. 

The Methods courses include:

PBPL 26200 Field Research Project in Public Policy I

PBPL 26301 Field Research Project in Public Policy*

PBPL 27040 Public Finance and Public Policy

GEOG 28201 Intro to Geographic Information Systems

SOCI 20001 Sociological Methods

SOCI 20112 Applications of Hierarchical Linear Models

SOCI 20118 Survey Research Overview
SOCI 20122 Introduction to Population

PPHA 34600 Program Evaluation

PPHA 34810 Mixed Methods Approaches to Policy Research

PLSC 22913 The Practice of Social Science Research

ENST 26433 Practicum in Environmental Management

The Windows courses include:

PBPL 26300 Field Research Project in Public Policy II

PBPL 26301 Field Research Project in Public Policy*

PBPL 24751 The Business of Non-Profits: The Evolving Social Sector

SOCI 20140 Qualitative Field Methods

CHDV 20305 Inequality in Urban Spaces

GEOG 26800 Geography Issues in Housing and Community Development

ENST 26433 Practicum in Environmental Management

* NOTE: PBPL 26301 cannot be taken after completion of PBPL 26300 without prior departmental approval.

The research practicum is generally taken by students in their third year. Students who plan to study abroad in Winter or Spring Quarter of their third year may opt to complete the research practicum in their second or fourth year. One of the goals of the practicum requirement is to prepare students to write excellent BA papers, so generally it is best if the practicum can be taken before the fourth year.

Fourth Year

Students must write a BA paper in their fourth year. The required seminar course, PBPL 29800 Senior Seminar, offered in the Autumn Quarter, is designed to assist students in developing and writing their BA papers. The instructor of PBPL 29800 Senior Seminar, the public policy preceptor, serves as a reader for the BA papers. Students are encouraged to choose a faculty adviser as a second reader for the project. Outstanding BA papers can earn an honors designation. In early April, fourth-year students present their BA papers at a Public Policy undergraduate research symposium.

The PBPL 29800 Senior Seminar informs students about sources, methods of research, and treatment of evidence. Students work throughout Winter and Spring Quarters with the preceptors (and possibly faculty advisers) in revising their BA papers. In addition to the PBPL 29800 Senior Seminar requirement, students may take one or two quarters of PBPL 29900 BA Paper Preparation: Public Policy for general elective credit. PBPL 29900 BA Paper Preparation: Public Policy, typically coordinated by a preceptor or faculty adviser, is designed to ensure that students will have sufficient time to write a quality BA paper.

Public Policy Studies may accept a BA paper that also is being used to satisfy the requirements of a second major. Approval from both program chairs is required to submit one BA paper to two majors. A consent form, to be signed by both chairs, is available from the College advising office. It must be completed and returned to the College adviser by the end of Autumn Quarter of the student’s year of graduation.

Courses

Many courses in related disciplines (e.g., Anthropology; Economics; History; Law, Letters, and Society; Political Science; Sociology; Biological Sciences) count toward the major when used as “specialization” courses.

Summary of Requirements

GENERAL EDUCATION
MATH 13100-13200Elementary Functions and Calculus I-II (or higher) *200
Total Units200
MAJOR
PBPL 26400Quantitative Methods in Public Policy100
PBPL 22100
  &  22200
  &  22300
Politics and Policy
   and Public Policy Analysis
   and Policy Implementation
300
ECON 20000The Elements of Economic Analysis I100
or PBPL 20000 Economics for Public Policy
STAT 22000Statistical Methods and Applications *100
or STAT 23400 Statistical Models and Methods
Three courses in an area of specialization300
PBPL 26200-26300Field Research Project in Public Policy I-II (or equivalent)200
PBPL 29800Senior Seminar100
BA paper
Total Units1200
*

Credit may be granted by examination. 

It is recommended that students take an additional course in statistics.

Grading

All courses counting toward the public policy major must be taken for quality grades unless students have prior approval for P/F grading from the undergraduate program chair.

Honors

Fourth-year students are eligible for honors if their overall GPA is 3.4 or higher. Those students are recommended for honors if their BA papers are judged to be of superior quality. For additional information about qualifying for honors, visit the Public Policy Studies website (pbpl.uchicago.edu).

Public Policy Studies - College Courses

PBPL 20000. Economics for Public Policy. 100 Units.

This course develops the microeconomic theories of consumer and producer choices, as well as demonstrates the application of these theoretical tools to policy problems. Supply, demand, and competitive markets are examined, along with the conditions under which government policy can increase efficiency.

Instructor(s): S. Shaikh, Staff     Terms Offered: Autumn,Spring
Prerequisite(s): Completion of two quarters of calculus required; prior knowledge of economics not required. For ECON majors and students who have taken ECON 20000: consent of instructor required.
Note(s): PBPL 20000 or ECON 20000 is required of all students who are majoring in public policy. PBPL 20000 satisfies the ECON 20000 prerequisite for PBPL 22200. Students who have taken ECON 20000 require the instructor's consent to enroll in PBPL 20000.

PBPL 20305. Inequality in Urban Spaces. 100 Units.

The problems confronting urban schools are bound to the social, economic, and political conditions of the urban environments in which schools reside. Thus, this course will explore social, economic, and political issues, with an emphasis on issues of race and class as they have affected the distribution of equal educational opportunities in urban schools. We will focus on the ways in which family, school, and neighborhood characteristics intersect to shape the divergent outcomes of low- and middle-income children residing with any given neighborhood. Students will tackle an important issue affecting the residents and schools in one Chicago neighborhood.

Instructor(s): M. Keels     Terms Offered: Winter
Note(s): CHDV Distribution, B*; 2*
Equivalent Course(s): CHDV 40315,CRES 20305,CHDV 20305

PBPL 21800. Economics and Environmental Policy. 100 Units.

This course combines basic microeconomic theory and tools with contemporary environmental and resources issues and controversies to examine and analyze public policy decisions. Theoretical points include externalities, public goods, common-property resources, valuing resources, benefit/cost analysis, and risk assessment. Topics include pollution, global climate change, energy use and conservation, recycling and waste management, endangered species and biodiversity, nonrenewable resources, congestion, economic growth and the environment, and equity impacts of public policies.

Instructor(s): S. Shaikh     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): ECON 19800 or higher, or PBPL 20000
Equivalent Course(s): LLSO 26201,ENST 21800

PBPL 22100. Politics and Policy. 100 Units.

This course has two fundamental aims. The first is to introduce students to a set of analytical tools and concepts for understanding how political institutions generate public policy. The second is to apply these tools in examining the major institutions of democracy in the United States.

Instructor(s): C. Berry     Terms Offered: Autumn
Note(s): Public Policy 22100-22200-22300 may be taken in any order.

PBPL 22200. Public Policy Analysis. 100 Units.

This course reviews and augments the basic tools of microeconomics developed in ECON 20000 and applies these tools to policy problems. We examine situations in which private markets are likely to produce unsatisfactory results, suggesting a potential rationale for government intervention. Our goal is to allow students to comprehend, develop, and respond to economics arguments when formulating or evaluating public policy.

Instructor(s): J. Leitzel     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): PBPL 20000 or ECON 20000
Note(s): PBPL 22100-22200-22300 may be taken in any order. PBPL 22200 is not intended for students majoring in public policy who are planning to specialize in economics or to take advanced economics courses; those students should meet with the program director or administrator to arrange an alternative.

PBPL 22300. Policy Implementation. 100 Units.

Once a policy or program is established, there is the challenge of getting it carried out in ways intended by the policy makers or program designers. This course explores some of the common obstacles, dilemmas, and opportunities that emerge when government (and, in some cases, non-governmental actors) attempts to put a policy into effect. Focused on the United States, and drawing on case studies from poverty, crime, and education, we grapple with prevailing understandings of the implementation process, as well as the functions of bureaucracy, program evaluation, and social movements.

Instructor(s): C. Broughton; A. Hammond     Terms Offered: Autumn,Spring
Prerequisite(s): Second-year standing is recommended; attendance on the first day of class is required or registration is dropped.
Note(s): PBPL 22100-22200-22300 may be taken in any order.

PBPL 23000. Organizational Analysis. 100 Units.

This course is a systematic introduction to theoretical and empirical work on organizations broadly conceived (e.g., public and private economic organizations, governmental organizations, prisons, professional and voluntary associations, health-care organizations). Topics include intraorganizational questions about organizational goals and effectiveness, communication, authority, and decision making. Using recent developments in market, political economy, and neoinstitutional theories, we explore organizational change and interorganizational relationships for their implications in understanding social change in modern societies.

Instructor(s): E. Laumann     Terms Offered: Autumn
Equivalent Course(s): SOCI 30101,SOCI 20101

PBPL 23100. Environmental Law. 100 Units.

This lecture/discussion course examines the development of laws and legal institutions that address environmental problems and advance environmental policies. Topics include the common law background to traditional environmental regulation, the explosive growth and impact of federal environmental laws in the second half of the twentieth century, regulations and the urban environment, and the evolution of local and national legal structures in response to environmental challenges.

Instructor(s): R. Lodato     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): Third- or fourth-year standing, or consent of instructor
Equivalent Course(s): ENST 23100,LLSO 23100

PBPL 23200. The Economics of Crime. 100 Units.

This course uses theoretical and empirical economic tools to analyze a wide range of issues related to criminal behavior. Topics include the police, prisons, gang behavior, guns, drugs, capital punishment, labor markets and the macroeconomy, and income inequality. We emphasize the analysis of the optimal role for public policy.

Instructor(s): S. Levitt     Terms Offered: TBD
Prerequisite(s): ECON 20100 required; ECON 21000 or STAT 23400 strongly recommended
Equivalent Course(s): ECON 28700

PBPL 23600. Political Sociology. 100 Units.

Political sociology explores how social processes shape outcomes within formal political institutions as well as the politics that occur in the family, civic associations, social networks, and social movements. This course surveys the emergence of the most historically significant forms of political ordering(particularly nation-states and empires); explores the patterns of participation, mobilization, and policy feedback's within nation-states, both democratic and non-democratic; and considers how transnational politics and globalization may reorder political relations.

Instructor(s): E. Clemens     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): Completion of the general education requirement in social sciences
Equivalent Course(s): ENST 23500,SOCI 30106,SOCI 20106

PBPL 24000. Chicago Neighborhoods. 100 Units.

This course is an applied learning experience in which students explore the many dimensions of Chicago neighborhoods, with a particular focus on the built environment and how it impacts – and is impacted by – the social and economic life of the city. Students will observe, interpret and represent neighborhoods through a series of exercises designed to deepen knowledge about the significance and meaning of neighborhood form. Readings and fieldwork will engage students in neighborhood analysis and observation techniques that explore contemporary issues about public life, diversity, and social equity.

Instructor(s): E. Talen     Terms Offered: Autumn
Equivalent Course(s): GEOG 24000,GEOG 34000,SOSC 36000,SOSC 26000

PBPL 24100. Urban Design: The Chicago Experience. 100 Units.

This course examines the theory and practice of urban design at the scale of block, street and building - the pedestrian realm. topics include walkability, the design of streets, architectural style and its effect on pedestrian experience, safety and security in relation to accessibility and social connection, concepts of urban fabric, repair and placemaking, the regulation of urban form, and the social implications of civic spaces. Students will analyze normative principles and the debates that surround them through readings and discussion as well as first hand interaction with the urbanism of Chicago.

Instructor(s): E. Talen     Terms Offered: Autumn
Equivalent Course(s): GEOG 24100,SOSC 26001

PBPL 24500. Economics of Urban Policies. 100 Units.

This course covers tools needed to analyze urban economics and address urban policy problems. Topics include a basic model of residential location and rents; income, amenities, and neighborhoods; homelessness and urban poverty; decisions on housing purchase versus rental (e.g., housing taxation, housing finance, landlord monitoring); models of commuting mode choice and congestion and transportation pricing and policy; urban growth; and Third World cities.

Instructor(s): G. Tolley, K. Ierulli     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): ECON 20100 and STAT 23400
Equivalent Course(s): GEOG 26600,GEOG 36600,LLSO 26202,ECON 26600

PBPL 24510. Gender and Development. 100 Units.

In this class, students will engage basic issues, conflicts, and innovative field research in gender and development. In particular, we will review theoretical foundations of gender and development, data and methods of research on gender and development, psychosocial, economic, political development, intersections of religion and conflict and development, and a review of recent work in international research and impact evaluations related to gender and development.

Instructor(s): A. Gonzalez     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): ECON 19800 or PBPL 22200; STAT 22000 recommended
Equivalent Course(s): CHDV 14510,SOCI 28070,GNSE 14510,ECON 14510

PBPL 24701. U.S. Environmental Policy. 100 Units.

Environmental policy is the product of political, historical, economic, and cultural factors that lead to certain outcomes (and not others). This course will examine each of these factors and their importance in shaping the environmental policies that exist in the United States, with consideration of both public lands and pollution control policies, as well as the theoretical underpinnings of environmental activism and policymaking.

Instructor(s): R. Lodato     Terms Offered: Autumn
Equivalent Course(s): ENST 24701,LLSO 24901

PBPL 24751. The Business of Non-Profits: The Evolving Social Sector. 100 Units.

Led by an experienced practitioner, this course aims to provide both an intellectual and experiential understanding of the contemporary nonprofit sector. In addition to a seminar component examining the rapidly evolving social sector, students engage in a hands-on consulting project for an area nonprofit involving analysis, reporting, and presentation.

Instructor(s): C. Velasquez     Terms Offered: Autumn,Winter,Spring
Prerequisite(s): Instructor consent required. During 6th and 7th week, students must submit an application to CampusCATALYST, a nonprofit that assists in the coordination of consulting projects. Please see the quarterly time schedules for the CampusCATALYST application link.

PBPL 24800. Urban Policy Analysis. 100 Units.

This course addresses the explanations available for varying patterns of policies that cities provide in terms of expenditures and service delivery. Topics include theoretical approaches and policy options, migration as a policy option, group theory, citizen preference theory, incrementalism, economic base influences, and an integrated model. Also examined are the New York fiscal crisis and taxpayer revolts, measuring citizen preferences, service delivery, and productivity.

Instructor(s): T. Clark     Terms Offered: Winter
Equivalent Course(s): SOCI 30120,SOCI 20120

PBPL 25105. Rethinking the Middle East. 100 Units.

Where is the Middle East, how do we go about studying it and why does it matter? This course explores the emergence of the ‘Middle East’ as an object of inquiry; a place with a people and a culture set in opposition to the ‘West.’ It asks how these categories are constituted, by whom, and with what consequence. How do they define the contours of political community, the possibilities for empathy and understanding or the limits of rights and moral obligation? The historical and contemporary texts assigned draw attention to the layered and shifting meanings of these categories, and in turn to the geopolitical and epistemological worlds that give rise to them. By putting these texts into conversation with each other the course engages a number of key issues that have occupied social theorists: the relationship between power and knowledge, the politics of representation, and the nature of social theory more generally.

Instructor(s): Yaqub Hilal     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): Students are expected to have completed the social sciences core curriculum before enrolling.
Equivalent Course(s): ANTH 24105,GLST 24105

PBPL 25405. Child Poverty and Chicago Schools. 100 Units.

This discussion- and debate-based course begins with a sociological and historical examination of child poverty, focusing on its origin, experience, and perpetuation in disadvantaged Chicago communities. Class meetings will involve debating school reform efforts, such as “turnaround” schools, charter schools, Promise Neighborhoods, and stepped up teacher evaluations. Further, the barriers that have contributed to the failure of previous reform initiatives—barriers that include social isolation, violence, and the educational system itself—will be identified and analyzed in-depth.

Instructor(s): C. Broughton     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): 2nd year standing required; attendance on the first day of class is required or registration will be dropped.
Equivalent Course(s): CRES 25405

PBPL 25810. Social Problems, Social Policy, and Social Change. 100 Units.

This course is designed to provide an analytic framework that enables students to understand how social problems are socially constructed, how social policies are created in response to those identified problems, and how social change efforts both shape and respond to the policy environment. During the quarter, we will examine how social problems, policies and programs are framed, re-framed, and addressed and how individuals, organizations, and relevant constituencies are involved in these processes.  In addition to providing an overview of the relationship between social problems, social policy, and social change efforts, the course encourages critical thought about the role of professionals (social workers, activists, journalists, etc.) in constructing and contesting social problems and solutions.

Instructor(s): J. Mosley     Terms Offered: Spring

PBPL 25860. Crime, Justice, and Inequality in the American City. 100 Units.

This course explores perspectives on street gangs and criminal activity; policing and the criminal justice system; and obstacles to securing housing, employment, and services for reentry after incarceration. Students will examine advances in the social science of adolescence and innovations in government policy and community-based programs aimed at encouraging public safety and youth development, improving policing and prisons, and promoting criminal desistance and decarceration. In addition, we will delve into the lived experience of adolescence and beyond in the context of racially-segregated, high-poverty neighborhoods, with a focus on Chicago. Our approaches will include discussion and lecture; ethnographic, autobiographical, and policy-oriented readings; panels and guest speakers; and documentary films and other media.

Instructor(s): Broughton, C.     Terms Offered: Winter
Equivalent Course(s): SOCI 20255

PBPL 26002. Urban Design Studio. 100 Units.

Based on prior coursework in either neighborhood or pedestrian scale urbanism, students in this course will have the chance to formulate a proposal for intervention to address an issue previously uncovered.  The proposal could be in the form of a written policy, two-dimensional plan, or three-dimensional design - depending on student interest. Example topics include policy proposals to address issues of gentrification and displacement, proposals to increase the spatial equity and accessibility of public space, three-dimensional visioning of future infill on vacant land, or development of a new kind of urban code to encourage pedestrian life.

Instructor(s): E. Talen     Terms Offered: Spring
Equivalent Course(s): SOSC 36002,GEOG 24200,GEOG 34200,SOSC 26002

PBPL 26200-26300. Field Research Project in Public Policy I-II.

This two-quarter sequence will expose students to real-world policy-making questions and field-based research methodologies. We will organize ourselves as a policy think tank working with various city agencies, non-profit organizations, and other corporations to design a research project, collect data, conduct analysis, and present findings. In the first quarter, we will follow a robust methodological training program in collaboration with University partners to advance the foundations laid elsewhere in the Public Policy Studies program. In the second quarter, this expertise in a full range of research methodologies will be put into practice to tackle public policy problems in the city and neighborhoods that surround the University.

PBPL 26200. Field Research Project in Public Policy I. 100 Units.

See sequence description.

Instructor(s): Staff     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): Open only to public policy studies majors. Third year standing recommended. PBPL 26200-26300 must be taken in sequence.

PBPL 26300. Field Research Project in Public Policy II. 100 Units.

See course sequence description.

Instructor(s): Staff     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): PBPL 26200; open only to public policy studies majors. Third year standing recommended. PBPL 26200-26300 must be taken in sequence.

PBPL 26301. Field Research Project in Public Policy. 100 Units.

This one-quarter, project-based research course introduces students to hands-on social and policy research in the service of a client. Students will engage in a variety of field research methods, both quantitative and qualitative, in order to gather data on sociological and policy-based questions related to the needs of our community-based, not-for-profit clients. Students will use the data they gather to practice their write-up and presentation skills, culminating in a final research-based client presentation and extended memo.

Instructor(s): C. Broughton, Staff     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): Open only to public policy studies majors. Third-year standing recommended.
Note(s): This course satisfies the Public Policy windows and methods practicum requirement and is intended only for that purpose.

PBPL 26400. Quantitative Methods in Public Policy. 100 Units.

Policy designers and policy analysts should understand the quantitative methods whereby social and economic reality can be described and policy outcomes evaluated; this course will introduce the basic methodologies used in quantitative social description. The underlying discipline is statistics, and this course will focus on statistical thinking and applications with real data sets. Students will be introduced to sampling, hypothesis testing, and regression, as well as other components of the basic toolkit of quantitative policy analysis.

Instructor(s): A. Fowler     Terms Offered: Spring

PBPL 26444. Practicum in Campus Athletics and Environment. 100 Units.

The practicum course will engage students in economic and environmental research related to designing a system for waste diversion on campus.  Students will develop hands-on experience by designing, implementing, measuring and reporting the impacts of a “zero-waste” campus athletics event. Students will explore different technologies and behavioral interventions for waste management, with a focus on reducing food waste at campus events. Students are expected to attend the zero-waste event on April 23-24th, 2017.

Instructor(s): S. Shaikh     Terms Offered: Spring
Equivalent Course(s): ENST 26444

PBPL 26530. Environment, Agriculture, and Food: Economic and Policy Analysis. 100 Units.

The connections between environment, agriculture, and food are inherent in our social, cultural, and economic networks. Land use, natural resource management, energy balances, and environmental impacts are all important components in the evolution of agricultural systems. Therefore it is important to develop ways in which to understand these connections in order to design effective agricultural programs and policies. This course is designed to provide students with guidance on the models and tools needed to conduct an economic research study on the intersecting topics of environment, agriculture, and food. Students learn how to develop original research ideas using a quantitative and applied economic policy analysis for professional and scholarly audiences. Students collect, synthesize, and analyze data using economic and statistical tools. Students provide outcomes and recommendations based on scholarly, objective, and policy relevant research rather than on advocacy or opinions, and produce a final professional-quality report for a workshop presentation and publication. This small seminar course is open by instructor consent to undergraduate and graduate students who meet the prerequisites. For consideration, please submit a one-page proposal of research to pge@uchicago.edu.

Instructor(s): S. Shaikh     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): ECON 20000 or ECON 20100 or PBPL 20000 or PBPL 22200 (or equivalent), STAT 22000 or STAT 23400 or PBPL 26400 (or equivalent); for ECON Enrollment: ECON 20000 and ECON 20100, STAT 23400
Equivalent Course(s): ECON 26530,PPHA 32510,ENST 26530

PBPL 26531. Environment, Agriculture, and Food: Advanced Economic and Policy Analysis. 100 Units.

This course is an extension of ENST 26530 but also stands alone as a complete course itself. Students don't need to take ENST 26530 to enroll in this course. This small seminar course is open by instructor consent to undergraduate and graduate students who meet the prerequisites. For consideration, please submit a one-page proposal of research to pge@uchicago.edu.

Instructor(s): S. Shaikh     Terms Offered: Not offered 2016-17
Prerequisite(s): ECON 20000 or ECON 20100 or PBPL 20000 or PBPL 22200 (or equivalent), STAT 22000 or STAT 23400 or PBPL 26400 (or equivalent); for ECON Enrollment: ECON 20000 and ECON 20100, STAT 23400
Equivalent Course(s): ECON 26540,PPHA 32520,ENST 26531

PBPL 26700. Economics of Education. 100 Units.

This course explores economic models of the demand for and supply of different forms of schooling. The course examines the markets for primary, secondary, and post-secondary schooling. The course examines numerous public policy questions, such as the role of government in funding or subsidizing education, the design of public accountability systems, the design of systems that deliver publicly funded (and possibly provided) education, and the relationship between education markets and housing markets.

Instructor(s): D. Neal     Terms Offered: Not offered 2016-17
Prerequisite(s): ECON 21000
Equivalent Course(s): ECON 26700

PBPL 27000. International Economics. 100 Units.

This course covers international economics with an emphasis on international trade. The basic theories of international trade are introduced and used to analyze welfare and distributional effects of international trade, government policies, and technology diffusion. In addition, this course also discusses the main empirical patterns of international trade and international investment.

Instructor(s): F. Tintelnot     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): ECON 20100
Equivalent Course(s): ECON 27000

PBPL 27040. Public Finance and Public Policy. 100 Units.

This course analyzes the rationales for government intervention in the economy, the form that intervention takes, and the effects of government policy. We will review the economic tools of analysis used in public finance, including cost-benefit analysis, and apply them to government policies, largely at the federal level. The course will focus on policies to remedy externalities, the provision of public goods, social insurance, and the effects of taxes. Within social insurance, we will cover social security and health reform. We will also explore the role taxation plays in government policy. Tax topics include the effect of taxes on consumers and firms, savings and corporate decisions, and fundamental tax reform.

Instructor(s): A. Jones     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): PBPL 20000 or ECON 20000

PBPL 27070. Philanthropy: Private Acts and Public Goods. 100 Units.

Under what conditions do philanthropy and other forms of private action come to be significant elements of the provision of public goods? What are the consequences of organizing society in this way? In this course, we will address the social role of philanthropy, its historical development as a significant economic and political institution, and the place of philanthropy in contemporary public policy and civic projects.

Instructor(s): E. Clemens     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): Completion of at least 2 SOSC courses or consent of instructor
Equivalent Course(s): SOCI 20222

PBPL 27750-27751. Practicum in Environment, Agriculture, and Food Policy I-II.

This course sequence is designed to acquaint students to real-world policy-making questions. Students will work together, along with an organizational partner, on designing and conducting a research project. Course work will involve academic literature reviews, various forms of data collection, research design, statistical analysis, and presentation of a final report. Previous projects have included certification of green restaurants in Chicago, mapping of campus green roofs in Chicago, transportation research for a Chicago museum exhibit, and design of incentive programs for storm water management in Chicago. Students in the course will also handle all aspects of running the Environment, Agriculture, and Food Working Group (eaf.uchicago.edu), including communication and outreach through website content and social media. Completion of the two-quarter sequence satisfies the undergraduate public policy studies practicum requirement.

PBPL 27750. Practicum in Environment, Agriculture, and Food Policy I. 100 Units.

No description available.

Instructor(s): S. Shaikh     Terms Offered: Autumn. Not offered 2016-17
Prerequisite(s): Open only to Public Policy majors and Environmental Studies majors and minors
Equivalent Course(s): ENST 27750

PBPL 27751. Practicum in Environment, Agriculture, and Food Policy II. 100 Units.

No description available.

Instructor(s): S. Shaikh     Terms Offered: Winter. Not offered 2016-17
Prerequisite(s): Open only to Public Policy majors and Environmental Studies majors and minors
Equivalent Course(s): ENST 27751

PBPL 27800. Understanding community: Civic Engagement and Public Policy. 100 Units.

Public interest design has gained prominence in policy and planning strategies in recent years. Nevertheless, the rhetoric of inclusion obscures the tensions and competing agendas that complicate urban transformation. This seminar will explore the plural narratives of stakeholders in the civic engagement process by considering the role of the civic-minded researcher and policymaker alongside methodological approaches that recognize and engage with the value of normative ideas embedded within and negotiated by communities. Readings and fieldwork will enrich our understanding of ‘community’ through an exploration of grassroots social movements and activism, co-production and participatory methodologies, and, crucially, the challenges that arise from these orientations.

Instructor(s): C. Barlow     Terms Offered: Winter
Equivalent Course(s): GEOG 26900,GEOG 36900

PBPL 27809. Violence in the Early Years. 100 Units.

This course will address issues related to children's exposure to violence.  Classes will cover topics including, but not limited to, the history of violence against children (infanticide, etc), children's literature, parental violence towards children, school-related violence, practices such as female genital mutilation, and other policy-relevant issues related to violence in children's lives.  We will analyze policies and reforms, review relevant research on each topic, and examine implications of the findings to policy and practice.

Instructor(s): A. Adukia     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): Third- or fourth year standing required

PBPL 27821. Urban Schools and Communities. 100 Units.

This course focuses on urban communities and the contextual factors influencing the organization of schools. It emphasizes historical, anthropological, and sociological perspectives as we explore questions about the purpose and history of public schools, the influences on the character of their structure and organization (especially in urban areas), and the surrounding context, such as housing, policy, race and class. The topics detailed below provide essential intellectual perspectives on the history, work, and complexities of urban schools.

Instructor(s): S. Stoelinga     Terms Offered: Autumn
Note(s): CHDV Distribution, C
Equivalent Course(s): CHDV 27821,SOCI 20226

PBPL 27823. Urban School Reform: History and Policy. 100 Units.

This course explores the goals, logic, and contradictions of the American education and school improvement efforts. We will consider the history of school reform and the processes that influence education policy implementation and enactment. Current school reform debates and policies will be analyzed from historical, contemporary, and divergent perspectives, considering theories of organizational change. The strengths and shortcomings of current school reform policies will be considered with a stress on understanding the wide range of goals for education, the process of policy-making, and the complexity of organizational and systemic change implied in reform policy.

Instructor(s): S. Stoelinga     Terms Offered: Spring
Equivalent Course(s): SOCI 20239

PBPL 27900. Global-Local Politics. 100 Units.

Globalizing and local forces are generating a new politics in the United States and around the world. This course explores this new politics by mapping its emerging elements: the rise of social issues, ethno-religious and regional attachments, environmentalism, gender and life-style identity issues, new social movements, transformed political parties and organized groups, and new efforts to mobilize individual citizens.

Instructor(s): T. Clark     Terms Offered: Autumn
Equivalent Course(s): HMRT 20116,HMRT 30116,SOCI 30116,LLSO 20116,SOCI 20116

PBPL 28050. Remaking Chicago: The City That Works on Social Change. 100 Units.

In this sociological and policy-oriented course, students interface with change-agents in Chicago—community residents, religious leaders, and social activists; not-for-profit and governmental actors; and educators and researchers. The course explores how these change-agents advance innovative and also tried-and-true approaches to social problems, especially those of low-income areas characterized by troubled schools and high rates of crime (and with a particular focus on South Side neighborhoods). Students are asked to think critically about how meaningful social change occurs, and why it so often does not. The central components of the course are Chicago-oriented readings, guest speakers and panels, Friday excursions, and independent field research

Instructor(s): Broughton, C.     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): Open to Study Chicago Quarter students.

PBPL 28270. Economics and International Health. 100 Units.

This course uses the tools of applied microeconomics to explore public health issues in the developing world. The course will develop an economic approach to health and health behavior, and examine how health care markets in developing countries mediate the welfare of patients. We will consider the economic aspects of HIV, malaria, diarrhea, and air pollution. Along the way, we will weigh the merits of common policy responses to these problems.

Instructor(s): D. Bennett     Terms Offered: Not offered 2016-2017
Prerequisite(s): ECON 19800, ECON 20000 or PBPL 20000 (Microeconomics) and a Statistics course or consent of the instructor.

PBPL 28350. Education and Development: Policy and Research. 100 Units.

This course covers policy issues related to education in developing contexts. We will analyze education policies and reforms, review relevant research on each topic, and examine implications of the findings to policy and practice. Topics include understanding factors that influence educational decisions, provision of basic needs in schools, teacher pay and incentives, school choice, discrimination and inclusion in education, early childhood education, and education in emergency settings. We will often have guest speakers who are working in policy and practice share their on-the-ground experiences followed by a class-led discussion about related academic papers.

Instructor(s): A. Adukia     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): A microeconomics course and a statistics course. This course is intended for third- and fourth-year students; first-year students not admitted; second-year students require instructor consent.

PBPL 28501. Process and Policy in State and City Government. 100 Units.

This course consists of three interrelated sub-sections: (1) process and policy in city and state government; (2) the role played by influential, key officials in determining policy outcomes; and (3) policymaking during and after a political crisis. Issues covered include isolating the core principles driving policy at city and state levels; understanding how high level elected officials can shape the course of policy; and determining how a political crisis affects policy processes and outcomes. Most of the specific cases are drawn from Chicago and the State of Illinois.

Instructor(s): C. Harris     Terms Offered: Autumn,Winter,Spring

PBPL 28605. Economic Analysis of Law. 100 Units.

This course involves the application of the choice theory of economics to the opportunities obtainable within different legal environments. The likelihood that a person will choose to return a lost wallet, keep a promise, drive more carefully, or heed the terms in a will is partly a function of the applicable laws and regulations. Alternative rules, under the standard Law and Economics approach, are compared in terms of the economic efficiency of their subsequent outcomes. This efficiency lens of Law and Economics is applied to rules concerning property, torts, contracts, and criminal behavior.

Instructor(s): J. Leitzel     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): ECON 20100
Equivalent Course(s): ECON 28600

PBPL 28702. Electoral Politics. 100 Units.

This course involves the scientific study of elections in advanced democracies with a primary focus on the modern United States. We will address empirical and theoretical questions about voters, candidates, parties, and the electoral system as a whole. For example, who runs for political office? How do they choose their policy platforms? How do citizens form their vote choices? Who turns out to vote and why? Who is informed and why? Does it matter that many citizens abstain from politics and are uninformed? What roles do race, ethnicity, and prejudice play in elections? What role does the media play? What laws and policies could improve political participation and political representation? We will address these questions through the applications of game theory, microeconomic theory, and most importantly quantitative/statistical analysis.

Instructor(s): A. Fowler     Terms Offered: Not offered 2016-2017
Prerequisite(s): Basic familiarity with American politics and statistics is required.

PBPL 28730. Insurgency in South and Southeast Asia. 100 Units.

This course will trace the emergence, spread, and decline of insurgencies across South and Southeast Asia. We will use cutting-edge theoretical and quantitative research to examine the causes of each conflict---from the Naxal Insurgency in India to the varied separatist movements in Indonesia---and draw on in-depth case studies of various counterinsurgency strategies to assess how these conflicts were or might be resolved through cooperation between local and international actors. Students will engage with ongoing field data collection efforts in Thailand and the Philippines, and will use original microdata as a core feature of their final research paper.

Instructor(s): Wright, A.     Terms Offered: Winter

PBPL 28750. Conflict: Root Causes, Conseq. and Solutions for the Future. 100 Units.

This course will focus on understanding the causes and consequences of conflict, drawing on literatures from economics, political science and psychology.  We will study why people join armed groups; and examine the role of ethnicity, religion and poverty in terrorism and civil war. We will also study whether conflict has lasting consequences on social cohesion and prospects for economic development. Finally, we will examine how individuals reconcile and rebuild in the aftermath of conflict.

Instructor(s): Dube, O     Terms Offered: Winter

PBPL 28805. Behavioral Economics and Policy. 100 Units.

The standard theory of rational choice exhibits explanatory power in a vast range of circumstances, including such disparate decision making environments as whether to commit a crime, have children, or seek to emigrate. Nonetheless, shortfalls from full rationality seem not to be uncommon, and are themselves, to some extent, systematic. Behavioral economics documents and tries to account for these departures from full rationality. This course looks at areas in which some modification of the traditional rational choice apparatus might most be warranted; these include decisions that unfold over time, involve low probability events, or implicate willpower. To what extent should public policy respond to shortfalls from rationality or concern itself with promoting happiness?

Instructor(s): J. Leitzel     Terms Offered: Spring

PBPL 28920. Inequality: Origins, Dimensions, and Policy. 100 Units.

For the last three decades, incomes in the United States and across the globe have grown more unequal. That fact has attracted worldwide attention from scholars, governments, religious figures, and public intellectuals. In this interdisciplinary course, participating faculty members drawn from across the University and invited guest speakers will trace and examine the sources and challenges of inequality and mobility in many of its dimensions, from economic, political, legal, biological, philosophical, public policy, and other perspectives.  

Instructor(s): A. Sanderson and Staff     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): Third- or fourth-year standing
Equivalent Course(s): ECON 24720,BPRO 28900

PBPL 29000. Energy and Energy Policy. 100 Units.

This course shows how scientific constraints affect economic and other policy decisions regarding energy, what energy-based issues confront our society, how we may address them through both policy and scientific study, and how the policy and scientific aspects can and should interact. We address specific technologies, both those now in use and those under development, and the policy questions associated with each, as well as with more overarching aspects of energy policy that may affect several, perhaps many, technologies.

Instructor(s): S. Berry, G. Tolley     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): PQ: Third- or fourth-year standing. For ECON majors who want ECON credit for this course (ECON 26800): PQ is ECON 20100.
Equivalent Course(s): CHSS 37502,ECON 26800,ENST 29000,PPHA 39201,PSMS 39000,BPRO 29000

PBPL 29050. Youth Law and Policy: Child Welfare and Juv. Just. in the U.S. 100 Units.

This course explores how legal institutions protect and punish children in the United States. We will spend the first part of the course exploring the child welfare system, which purports to protect children from abuse and neglect through various mechanisms including foster care and the termination of parental rights.  We will spend the second part of the course exploring the juvenile justice system, which purports to prosecute and rehabilitate children for their criminal acts in a system separate from the criminal justice system. In the final part of the course, we will consider special topics in this area of law and policy including “cross-over youth” (i.e. children involved in both systems), unaccompanied immigrant children, homeless and runaway youth, and the so-called “school-to-prison-pipeline.” This course will place special emphasis on the judges, lawyers, law enforcement officers, and social workers that comprise these legal institutions.

Instructor(s): Andrew Hammond     Terms Offered: Winter
Equivalent Course(s): HMRT 29050,LLSO 29050

PBPL 29120. Poverty Law and Policy Reform. 100 Units.

This seminar seeks to give students a comprehensive understanding of the major anti-poverty programs in the United States with an emphasis on current challenges and reform proposals. We will spend the first half of the course exploring the implementation and evaluation of the programs that make up the traditional safety net for poor Americans: income supports, health insurance, and housing assistance. We will spend the rest of the quarter exploring topics that complicate the traditional social policy regime, including how the safety net is more robust for some groups, such as the elderly and veterans, than others. We will explore how the legal systems of immigration and incarceration hamper anti-poverty policy and how safety net programs address the needs of rural and Native Americans. Finally, we will investigate two recent developments in the field: social entrepreneurship and the critique of procedural rights.

Instructor(s): Hammond, A.      Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): No first year students; attendance on the first day of class is required.
Equivalent Course(s): HMRT 29120

PBPL 29294. Introduction to Global Health. 100 Units.

This course provides an overview of global health from the historical perspective to the current state of global health. The course features weekly guest lecturers with a broad range of expertise in the field: topics include the social and economic determinants of health, the economics of global health, global burden of disease, and globalization of health risks, as well as the importance of ethics, human rights, and diplomacy in promoting a healthier world. The course is designed for graduate-level students and senior undergraduates with an interest in global health work in resource-limited settings.

Instructor(s): C. Babcock, C. S. Olopade     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): This course does not meet requirements for the biological sciences major
Equivalent Course(s): PBHS 30030,CCTS 43000,BIOS 29294

PBPL 29355. Leading Complex Organizations. 100 Units.

In virtually any field of endeavor, individuals will find themselves operating within organizations — many of them quite complex.  By studying leadership of such organizations at the outset of a career, individuals will learn how to better succeed within any organization and will attain a level of preparation for assuming leadership positions if they ultimately become available.  The seminar will cover a number of critical subjects:  the difference between leadership and management; the development of the organization’s sense of mission and the strategy to achieve it; organizational culture; building and leading a team; entrepreneurial leadership; organizational transformation; leading an organization through crisis; how a leader relates to an organization’s governing body and external constituencies; how leaders are held accountable.  

Instructor(s): Thomas Cole     Terms Offered: Spring
Prerequisite(s): Third- or fourth-year standing

PBPL 29600. Internship: Public Policy. 100 Units.

Students write a paper about their experience working for a government agency or nonprofit organization.

Instructor(s): Staff     Terms Offered: Autumn,Winter,Spring
Prerequisite(s): Consent of program chair
Note(s): Open only to students who are majoring in public policy. Students are required to submit the College Reading and Research Course Form. Must be taken for P/F grading. Students must make arrangements with the program chair before beginning the internship.

PBPL 29700. Reading and Research: Public Policy. 100 Units.

No description available.

Terms Offered: Autumn,Winter,Spring
Prerequisite(s): Open only to students who are majoring in public policy
Note(s): Students are required to submit the College Reading and Research Course Form.

PBPL 29701. Readings and Research: Working Group in Environment, Agriculture, and Food (EAF) 100 Units.

This course consists of participation in the Environment, Agriculture, and Food Group in a role assigned by the instructor.

Instructor(s): S. Shaikh     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): Registration by instructor consent only
Note(s): Please email Sabina Shaikh at sabina@uchicago.edu.
Equivalent Course(s): ENST 29701

PBPL 29800. Senior Seminar. 100 Units.

PBPL 29800, the Senior Seminar, is offered in Autumn Quarter and is designed to assist students in developing and writing the required BA paper. Students register for PBPL 29800 in Autumn Quarter and continue to work throughout Winter and Spring Quarters with a BA Seminar instructor/preceptor (and possibly faculty advisers) in revising their BA papers. The Autumn Quarter class informs students about sources, methods of research, and treatment of evidence. The instructor/preceptor of the Senior Seminar serves as a reader for the BA papers. Students may choose a faculty adviser as a second reader—though second readers are not required. Outstanding BA papers can earn an honors designation. As part of the BA process, students write a policy memo that distills their BA research and, in early April, present their BA papers at the yearly Public Policy undergraduate research symposium for graduating seniors.

Instructor(s): Staff     Terms Offered: Autumn
Prerequisite(s): Open only to fourth-year students who are majoring in public policy
Note(s): Must be taken for a quality grade.

PBPL 29900. BA Paper Preparation: Public Policy. 100 Units.

No description available.

Instructor(s): Staff     Terms Offered: Autumn,Winter,Spring
Prerequisite(s): Open only to fourth-year students who are majoring in public policy
Note(s): Students are required to submit the College Reading and Research Course Form.

PBPL PBPL . Violence in the Early Years. 100 Units.

This course will address issues related to children's exposure to violence.  Classes will cover topics including, but not limited to, the history of violence against children (infanticide, etc), children's literature, parental violence towards children, school-related violence, practices such as female genital mutilation, and other policy-relevant issues related to violence in children's lives.  We will analyze policies and reforms, review relevant research on each topic, and examine implications of the findings to policy and practice.

Instructor(s): A. Adukia     Terms Offered: Winter
Prerequisite(s): Third- or fourth-year standing


Contacts

Undergraduate Primary Contact

Program Director
Jim Leitzel
G-B 222
773.702.8555
Email

Secondary Contact

Associate Program Director for Public Policy
Chad Broughton
G-B 218A
773.834.9810
Email

Administrative Contact

Program Administrator
Lee Price
G-B 216
773.702.7134
Email

Preceptor/BA Advisor

Program Preceptors

G-B 218-B

Email

Listhost

publicpolicy-ugrad@lists.uchicago.edu