University of Ottawa - Graduate School of Public and International Affairs
API-5116: Democratic Governance and Public Management
Description: Examination of the political institutions of democratic societies and their implications for the formulation and implementation of public policy. Study of Canada in a comparative perspective. Topics include the organization of the executive and decision-making in government, the relationship among the political executive, the Public Service and the legislature, and policy implementation by the Public Service. Current trends in public management, such as new modes of service delivery, citizen engagement and consultation, and performance-based management.
The course focuses on the political and administrative institutions and processes that guide and structure the formulation and implementation of public policy in democratic societies. In this context, its general objective is to ensure that students understand the purpose, nature and effects of the institutional and normative framework provided by the constitutions of liberal democracies on their governments and administrations. While an emphasis will be placed the workings of Canadian institutions, the experience of other democratic countries will also be considered, partly to place the Canadian experience in a comparative context but also to draw our attention to broader principles or phenomena that can be found across democratic polities.
At the end of the semester, students should be able to describe and discuss, in a critical and sophisticated manner, the main principles, processes and institutions that guide policy-making and public administration in democratic societies. In particular, they should be able to describe and discuss critically the complex relationships among the various institutional components of the democratic state, the key political and bureaucratic decision-making processes associated with policy-making in some of those states, and the implications of the contemporary trends that are currently transforming those processes and relationships.
In addition to the acquisition of knowledge, the course also seeks to help students develop some of the analytical and writing skills that they will find essential in the workplace. Professionals in the field of policy-making must be able to communicate, in a clear and succinct manner, their analysis of complex issues, often under severe time constraints. Accordingly, as part of the course, students will be challenged to hone their research and writing skills by completing two policy-oriented assignments. These assignments should help students better understand the particular challenges involved in communicating policy analysis in a professional environment.
Faculty: Luc Juliet (Fall 2012)
Source: At http://ssms.socialsciences.uottawa.ca/vfs/.horde/offre_cours/syllabus/00011112040_API5116A.pdf (accessed 6 April 2013)