Courses Description

1st Year

Core Curriculum

59713 Conceptual Basis for Microeconomics

4 credits, course

The course will provide an overview of the following microeconomics issues: production possibilities curve, comparative advantage, marginal product and diminishing returns, production functions, resource allocation, consumer theory, supply and demand, equilibrium in perfect competition, labor market, good market, income/substitution effect, substitute/complement good, taxes and subsidies, open economy equilibrium and monopoly.

59826 Conceptual Foundations in Mathematics

2 credits, course

59827 Statistics & Quantitive Methods

2 credits, course

The course provides basic concepts in descriptive statistics, probability theory, statistical inference and ordinary linear models. However, it is about applied statistics rather than mathematical statistics. Therefore, the applied aspect is emphasized by statistical analyses of selected cases using the statistical software SPSS.

59610 Theoretical Issues in Public Policy and Admnistration

4 credits, course

This annual course will cover key theoretical approaches to the study of the public policy process and the administration of public bureaucracies. In the first semester, students will employ a theoretical perspective to analyze stages of the public policy process, the political context within which public policy is shaped, and models of public policy change and inertia. In the second semester, students will analyze the variance among public organizations, different models for the allocation of responsibility between bureaucrats and politicians, the shaping of public bureaucracies' responsiveness to external influence, the shaping of bureaucratic identity and reputation, and change and inertia in the structure and management of public bureaucracies.

The course assessment will involve:

- An essay (1500 words) (40%) at the end of the first semester

- A two hours exam (60%) at the end of the second semester

59709 Values in Israeli Culture

 2 credits, course

Zionist ideology was, in its early days, a unifying force strong enough to produce a revolution in Jewish identity, and serve as an ethos for a state in the making. But over the half century that elapsed since the founding of Israel this ethos was deeply transformed: it moved from an emphasis on the collective aspects of life to a radical from of individualism. The course will follow the gradual shift in values that Israel has undergone from the heyday of Labor Zionism until the rise of Post-Zionism and the new ethos of privatization.

59710 The Basics of Israeli Public Law

 2 credits, course

The course is designed to provide students with a general knowledge of the constitutional, legislative and regulatory legal principles of Israeli public law. We will study the general elements of the legal system, the constitutional recognition and protection of human rights, Israel's Basic Laws and their impact on the legal system and on policy-making, as well as the legal frameworks applied to review social and economic government action. Both the need to employ legal measures to achieve policy objectives and the danger of abuse of power are considered, in the context of an examination of the legal tools available to individuals, communities and decision-makers.

Mark: Short written paper 10%, final paper 90%, up to 5 points bonus for high level participation.

Groundwork Courses

59715 Evaluating Plans and Alternatives

 1 credit, course

Almost all public policy decisions are based on policy alternatives. The dominant method to choose among the policy alternatives is Cost Benefit Analysis (CBA). Such analysis gives monetary values to all the benefit and costs that are associated with a specific policy alternative and compare all the policy alternatives. However, such method bears many methodological challenges and may bias the analysis. In this course we examine the methodological issues that are involved in cost benefit analysis in order to identify potential biases and have critical view of such analysis. In addition, we examine other evaluation methods, especially multi-dimensional methods.

59716 Public Economics

 4 credits, course

The goal of this course is to provide an economic conceptual framework that enables us to discuss the effects of government intervention on the efficiency of resources allocation in a range of areas such as education, health and welfare. The course first shows that under certain conditions market economy lead to an efficient allocation of resources. Then we discuss the conditions under which market economy fail to generate an efficient allocation. Various types of government intervention to remedy those market failures are presented along side with the limitations of government involvement. The inequality as a prominent consideration for government intervention is also discussed. In the second part of the course we deal with taxes that are needed to finance government intervention. In particular, we study how to design an efficient and equitable tax system. For each and every economic policy question discussed, the presentation of an economic conceptual framework is followed by a description of the way and extent of government intervention in Israel and the developed world.

59718 Organizational Analysis

 2 credits, course

The course will supply a conceptual basis for understanding the organizational environment in which managers and change agents design and implement policy.

It will deal with two main dimensions in OB (Organizational Behavior): individuals and groups in public organizations; power and control in organizations. The course will combine organizational theoretical analysis with case-study analysis while simulating a variety of situations and events in day-to-day organizational life.

59720 Introduction to Policy Analysis – Workshop

 4 credits, workshop

The workshop will focus on familiarizing students with the conceptual framework of policy analysis and the process of public policy-making. The conceptual framework of policy analysis will include identifying the actors and interests in the policy arena, agenda-setting, defining the problem, decision-making, and implementing and evaluating public policy. The workshop will provide an opportunity for students to work as a team and as individuals to write policy papers about issues on the public agenda.

59770 Research Methods

 2 credits, course

The first part of the course is intended to develop the students' ability in effective and critical reading of diverse academic reports, and enhance their understanding of accepted standards of academic writing. The second part of the course is devoted to an introduction to a range of research methods, while noting their comparative strengths and weaknesses with respect to different types of research questions.

2nd Year

59732 Advanced Workshop in Policy Analysis

4 credits, workshop

The goal of the workshop is to refine the ability of students to analyze policy issues, work with colleagues, and prepare effective presentations of findings. The first semester will be focused on writing policy papers and memos. In the second semester, the students will complete the final project of writing a policy paper for a client in the public sector.

Requirement: Course 59720

59768 Ethics of Public Servants

 2 Credits, course

The course examines the ethical foundations guiding the responsibilities and duties of public servants in democratic societies, their justifications and unique characteristics. On the practical level, the course discusses some basic issues involving ethics of public servants, such as ethics in the age of privatization and outsourcing, conflict between professional and public values, conflict of interests, the receipt of gifts and other benefits, public servants' freedom of expression, etc. Such issues will be examined, inter alia by comparison to corresponding normative propositions in the criminal and disciplinary law also directing the behavior of pubic servants.

59775 M.A. Policy Paper

Elective Courses

59873 Terrorism Economy & Politics

 4 credits, course

The course is intended to provide a formal analysis of terrorism from an economic perspective. We will consider a variety of theoretical and empirical approaches to studying terrorism. This include the study of the economic costs and consequences of terrorism, the evaluation of the economic root causes on the occurrence of terrorism, the economics of religion and its relation to terrorism and suicide terrorism in particular, the economics of counterterrorism and the political economy of terrorism. All of which will rely heavily on studies of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and Israel's experience in coping with terrorism.

The course will rely on positive, as opposed to normative, economic analyses aimed to identify cause and effect based on the relevant supporting theories. This course is NOT about the latest political or economic debate on who did what to whom in the Middle East or in any other conflict area. It will, however, provide the tools and understandings necessary for a substantive discussion of that sort to take place.

The course is technically challenging and rigorous and therefore requires at minimum background in research methods/econometrics in addition to introduction to microeconomics.

59603 Issues In Educational Policy

 2 credits, course

Public committees on education reflect the central issues that were addressed by the education system during the years. Also, they mirror the priorities and what was on the agenda. Topics that were addressed in public committees include structure and funding, curriculum, pedagogy, assessment, accountability, parental involvement and parental choice, violence, teachers' training and special education. This course will focus on the different committees and their reports.

Two aspects will guide our discussion. For each topic we will discuss scientific research including central theories and main findings. In addition, we will discuss policy issues such as agenda setting, main actors, policy recommendations, implementation and evaluation. The main objective of the course is to bridge between these two aspects.

59605 Urban Politic In Local Government

 2 credits, course

This course sets as its main objective to apply some core formal models of decision making processes to the case of Israeli local governments.

We analyze crucial conflicts and dilemmas with which local governments in general and Israeli cities in particular have been struggling with in the last decades. The course discusses basic concerns of urban politics, among them: central-local relationship, politicians-bureaucrats interaction, local interests groups, local representation, and budgeting constraints.

59608 Judgment and Decision Making in Public Policy

 2 credits, course

Decision making constitutes a central aspect of policy making and evaluation. The purpose of the course is to introduce the range of normative and descriptive approaches to the analysis and understanding of judgment and decision making in general, and in political institutions in particular. The course includes critical and comparative study of the central models in the field, from varied disciplines such as cognitive and social psychology, behavioral economics, organizational theory and public policy.

59719 Transport Policy & Politics

 2 credits, course

The transportation system is characterized with a large number of actors, interests and users, intensive capital investment and negative externalities. In the course we discuss its different aspects with various analytical tools. We use Israeli case studies to understand the complexity of policy making in transportation.

59760 Public Policy Forum

School's lecturers.

An internal forum for discussing policy issues on the daily public agenda.

Available only to student in the school of public policy.

80% attendance is mandatory.

59774 Theories of Regulation

2 credits, course

'Regulation' has become a key concept in the analysis of the current public sphere. Against the background of liberalization, privatization and globalization, government commitment to protect the public from social risk and supply of essential services, and the blurring of the traditional boundary between the private and the public, the political and legal spheres provide a variety of policy tools for the direction and regulation of various social and economic sectors. This introduction to the interdisciplinary field of regulation addresses the history of regulation, several basic theories of regulation, and several key issues in the design and implementation of regulatory frameworks. These themes are applied by references to a variety of regulatory frameworks in Israel.

The course is open to graduate students. Undergraduates require prior permission of the lecturer.

59881 The Right to Health in Light of the Law and Public Policy

 2 Credits, course

The course analyzes the complex right to health and its justifications, reflecting on the various sources affecting its enforceability, whose origins lie in human behavior, the contribution of environment and genetics to physical and mental conditions, the social, economical and cultural structures and the political elements shaping the health system in the state. The course has four parts. In the first, a general and abstract discussion of the right to health will take place, inter alia through the examination of the following questions: what is the right to health? How does the local and international law recognize the right to health and what may be the limits of law's understanding of such a right? What are the main justifications for the right to health? Does the right to health equal to the right to receive health care? Should principles of justice, fairness and equality apply to the right to receive medical care? etc. The second part of the course will describe and analyze the health system in Israel and will discuss the major principles for its management, including the public and complementary health insurance systems, the "Medical Basket” and the provision of services not included by it, private medical services offered by public hospitals, health reforms etc. The third part of the course will discuss the relationship between social, economical and cultural structures and health ("social detriments of health”). Specifically, the right to health of minorities like Israeli-Arabs and immigrants will be examined, and the rights of vulnerable patients such as those in need of psychiatric or nursing services will be at focus. In the last part of the course the right to health will be examined through the discussion of specific rights to receive medical treatment, including the right to receive fertility treatment, the right to receive organs for transplantation and the right to avoid from smoking health hazards.

59601 Theory & Methodology in the Study of Public Policy

2 Credits, course

The study of Public Policy and Public Administration has changed dramatically in recent decades. Sociologists, historians, economists political scientists, and researchers from the fields of education, geography, social work, public health, to name a few, have created corpus of conceptual works and methodological frameworks that has gradually permeated the study of public policy and public administration. A number of the insights that were produced in other disciplines have enables policy researchers to conceptualize components and characteristics of complex policy-making processes, and examine them in a systematic manner. In light of such insights, this workshop will discuss recent theoretical and methodological advances in the study of public policy and administration. It will focus on the scientific approach to the study of public policy dynamics, and touches questions related to scientific progress in studying public policy and administration, as well as originality of research in these areas. The workshop will also present the various theoretical approaches that are used to conceptualize claims made in public policy research. Finally, it will attend to areas that remain conceptually ambiguous in the study of public policy and administration.

59828 Personal Tutorial

2 credits, requires authorization from the head of the school.

59874 Personal Tutorial

4 credits, requires authorization from the head of the school.