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University of Nebraska Public Policy Center

Thomas C. Sorensen Seminar:
Public Policy Formulation & Analysis

Tuesday, September 26, 2000
and Tuesday, November 28, 2000

This workshop provided participants with the ability to critically consume policy research by learning how to question the assumptions and assess the research design. Participants considered, for example, how the definition of a policy issue or proposed goals of a program narrows the policy analysis in ways that may ignore other legitimate conceptualizations. In addition, the methods and models used in research carry certain assumptions and limitations that need to be understood in order to assess the validity of the research results. Understanding how policy research is designed and carried out allows participants to actively engage in informed discussions of policy research as well as provide better direction to analysts hired to conduct policy research.

September 26, Seminar Leader
Lyn Kathlene is an Associate Professor of Political Science and the Director of the Public Policy Analysis Program at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. She received a M.A. in policy analysis and a Ph.D. in political science from the University of Colorado-Boulder. She has published articles in the American Political Science Review, Journal of Politics, and Political Research Quarterly, among other journals. She has conducted policy research for the United Way, the Center for State Courts, as well as various cities and local non-profit agencies. She also served as a research fellow at the Hubert H. Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs at the University of Minnesota. Dr. Kathlene is noted for the creation and implementation of citizen surveys for long range planning processes, such as county and city comprehensive plans. In 2000-2001, she will serve as a Faculty Associate in the Office of the Senior Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

November 28, Seminar Leader
John Anderson is an Associate Professor of Political Science at the University of Nebraska at Kearney. He received a M.A. in political science from the University of Wyoming and Ph.D. in political science from Washington State University. He has publications in several academic journals including Policy Studies Journal, Administrative Theory and Praxis, and The Social Science Journal, among others. Professor Anderson has been engaged in practical policy research in a number of settings. He has done analysis for the federal district court in Eastern Washington, a public power agency, the University of Nebraska at Kearney, the cities of Kearney and Norfolk, the Mid-Nebraska Community Action Program, the Kearney Area Homeless Coalition, and local neighborhood associations.


Click here to learn  more about the Thomas C. Sorensen Seminar Series.