The global financial crisis exposed flaws in the policymaking systems around the world, and very markedly in Ireland. In part, these flaws reflect the technical capacity of policymakers to do effective public policy analysis. This relationship is recognised by the Irish state, the EU, and other international bodies as they attempt to increase the number of professionally qualified policy specialists working with them.
In response DCU is offering a bespoke, interdisciplinary course designed to suit the needs of a new generation of policymakers—the MSc in Public Policy is a new type of professional degree with an intellectual base and methodological rigour that reflect the needs of a sector facing more nuanced and complex challenges.
Why Do This Programme?
• Join the growing number of professional policy specialists working directly for state, national and international organisations; or serve as a policy specialist in a private sector with an increasing need to be informed in public policy.
•Become a policymaker or an informed actor in the policymaking system by developing skills and knowledge in quantitative methods, policy design and implementation, research design, communications skills, law, and policy analysis.
•Increase your expertise in specific policy areas.
•Gain real-world experience of policymaking in a variety of fields through the internship component.
•Build relationships and contacts with colleagues from a variety of backgrounds, a range of specialists and policymakers that will give you a head start as you build your career.
Programme Structure and Content
You'll take four core modules, and choose two other modules from a suite of options, followed by a Policy Analysis Exercise. An innovative departure from the traditional dissertation, this Policy Analysis Exercise—which can be linked to an internship—is an opportunity for you to work, in a team, as a consultant, on real policy problems set by public organisations.
Programme Aims and Objectives
•Viewing public policy analysis as the technology to the science of social science is central both to the delivery of courses and to student assessment.
•The course prepares students to perform, understand and communicate professional policy analysis in the public sector and sectors working to it.
•Along with traditional lectures, the programme employs problem-based learning (PBL)—this involves you becoming versed in the most up-to-date aspects of and science behind a relevant discipline, observing these elements in operation by working through case studies, and then using the knowledge gained to solve set problems.
•To prepare you for the working world, you'll be prompted to collaborate with other students to define problems, identify relevant data to solve these and divide work in fair and efficient ways.
Why Choose DCU?
•Draw on expertise across Ireland's most innovative university.
•Small class sizes with a diverse student body.
•Interactive, problem-based teaching style.
•Accessible lecturers with real expertise in their disciplines.
•Links to employers and a network of alumni.