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Methods of Policy Analysis

New NYU Course with Mark Kleiman for Fall 2017

Next fall, NYU’s Wilf Family Department of Politics will offer a new courses taught by Professor Mark Kleiman, the Director of the Crime & Justice program at NYU’s Marron Institute of Urban Management. This graduate-level course is open to graduate and undergraduate students outside of Politics as well. For additional information, please contact: or call (212) 992 - 6839.


Instructor: Mark Kleiman
When: Mondays, 12:00 PM - 2:00 PM & Wednesdays, 12:00 PM - 1:20 PM
Credits: 4

Description: Policy analysis is the discipline of thought that considers how to make and implement policy choices in the public interest. Policy analysis is a pragmatic discipline: it uses the social and natural sciences as inputs, but its principal output is advice to decision-makers (including citizens) rather than new theoretical or empirical knowledge. Led by one of America’s foremost public policy scholars, Professor Mark Kleiman, this course will focus on techniques for comparing the advantages and disadvantages of policy options: benefit-cost analysis, cost/effectiveness analysis, discounting (choice over time), and decision analysis (choice under uncertainty). In each case, we will be measuring achievable outcomes against one another, rather than against some imagined ideal, asking always the policy analyst’s stock question: “Compared to what?” 

Draft Syllabus

Prospective students can get a sense for Professor Kleiman and the sorts of policy issues that he addresses in his own work from the videos and articles at the links below.

Drug Policy

Getting Public Policy Right on Psychadelic Drugs

What is the Most Sensible Policy on Cannabis?

Public Safety

Graduated Reintegration: Reducing Recidivism & Mass Incarceration

Compassionate Policing, Healthier Cities

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