Public Policy Education and Global Engagement in the Case of University of Southern California (USC): A Lesson- Drawing for Turkey


  • Onur Kulaç , Assistant Professor, Pamukkale University - Turkey


Public Policy Education and Discipline, Global Engagement, USC Sol Price School, Higher Education, Turkey


In the historical process, citizens in each country have many specific requests and expectations from governments. These demands sometimes arise from a problem or may arise under changing terms and conditions. In this regard, governments use policymaking mechanisms in different policy areas. Public policy analysis, policy transfer and learning, lesson-drawing, and decision-making are among the topics that need to be brainstormed and focused on. Public policy education and discipline have shown significant development in many countries, especially in the United States, over the past three decades. Public policy schools and departments worldwide, academic journals established, and collaborations with think tanks greatly contribute to governments in solving social problems. Globalization and the development of information technologies have impacted higher education, and global engagement has become significant for almost every academic discipline. Universities aim to align their public policy schools or departments with the concept of global engagement through different practices they carry out. The University of Southern California (USC), which has one of the best public policy schools globally, has a significant level at the point of global engagement. USC Sol Price School of Public Policy is among the top three best schools in the United States (U.S.News, 2022) with its Global Visiting Scholars Platform, international lab activities, bilateral agreements, and student facilities. Turkey, strategically essential between Europe and Asia, adopted a new government system in 2018. Presidential policy councils and offices, which have been implemented as new public policy actors, offer the opportunity for policy processes to be more efficient and collaborative. In the academic field of public policy, even though Turkey has been developing in the last ten years in terms of public policy discipline and teaching, it still has significant shortcomings in institutionalization and global engagement. Turkish universities currently have no public policy schools, departments, or doctoral programs. The foremost aim of this study is to scrutinize the efforts and the activities of USC Sol Price School in the context of global engagement to draw lessons and present policy recommendations for Turkish universities. This study aims to fill the void in the academic literature in terms of public policy education and global engagement by benefiting lesson drawing and policy transfer. To this end, in this study, semi-structured interviews, which is qualitative research, were conducted with the relevant directors of the Global Visiting Scholar Platform, International Laps, and IPPAM programs to explore the relationship between public policy education and global engagement. Therefore, the study has great importance in the context of public policy education and policy analysis. This study reveals that academic programs, faculty members' academic interests, and international efforts at the USC Sol Price School of Public Policy have made promising contributions to the point of global engagement. In this respect, the case of the USC Sol Price School of Public Policy and the activities related to public policy teaching can constitute a guideline for developing the public policy field in Turkish higher education institutions.  





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