Education is core to the mission of the Center on Democracy, Development and the Rule of Law (CDDRL), along with the belief that academic knowledge should have practical applications that help make the world a better place. It is through this lens, and with generous support from Luminate, that we are pleased to announce the launch of Solving Public Policy Problems, a free massive open online course (MOOC) on public policy.
Solving Public Policy Problems draws on the innovative curriculum of both Stanford’s Ford Dorsey Master's in International Policy (MIP) and CDDRL’s Leadership Academy for Development (LAD). LAD trains carefully selected government officials and business leaders from developing countries and aspiring democracies who are responsible for crafting policies and programs that will improve the lives of citizens in their countries. LAD’s intensive course modules provide participants with a robust analytical framework that strengthens their ability to act as effective catalysts for policy change around the world.
Much like MIP and LAD, this course relies heavily on case studies to illustrate the lessons and takeaways we want our students to retain. All of the cases taught in this course are LAD originals and feature real-world problems faced by international actors. Our goal is to democratize access to both these materials and Stanford’s world-class faculty and teach participants how they can apply the lessons learned from these dilemmas to the issues faced in their own work.
The course consists of six modules — five taught by political scientist Francis Fukuyama, the Olivier Nomellini Senior Fellow at Stanford’s Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies (FSI) and director of MIP, and one taught by Erik Jensen, Professor of the Practice and Director of the Rule of Law Program at Stanford Law School, and affiliated faculty at CDDRL.
Solving Public Policy Problems is designed for a wide array of audiences including current and former MIP students, practitioners all over the world, and those who have a general interest in positively impacting global democracy. “Whether you’re new to the field of public policy design, looking to expand your knowledge in the field, or even a seasoned expert, this course aims to give participants foundational knowledge of the best means for enacting effective policy change in their home countries,” shared Fukuyama. “Not only will it serve as a timely refresher on lessons learned for existing CDDRL and MIP alumni, we’ve put together modules on cases that have not yet been taught in any of our programs.” This video series was produced for the Leadership Network for Change, a network that joins together alumni from all of CDDRL’s training programs, with the generous support of Luminate.
With this new initiative, we hope to contribute to the formulation of new methodologies for public policy education, experiment with pedagogical techniques, and energize a network of dedicated public policy reformers.
Introduction to the Problem-Solving Framework
This first set of three mini-lectures focuses on how to solve problems faced by the government, the private sector, and civil societies in developing and transitional countries. In these lectures, and in the programs that we run for rising leaders in the developing world, we try to deepen our student's understanding of the causes of underlying social and economic problems and provide tools that can be helpful in addressing those problems.