Questions to Consider when Undertaking Policy Research
You are required to complete 2 policy papers for this course. This guide will highlight the types of resources you might use to prepare your policy reports, and provide you with links to some suggested sources. However, you will need to go beyond the specific sources listed on this guide to successfully complete your papers.
As you begin your research, consider the questions below. They will help you to determine what information you might need, why it might be useful, and where you might find it.
- Who are the key stakeholders who might be interested in my policy area (e.g. specific populations, interest groups, activists, business interests, think tanks, non-profit groups, etc.)? [STAKEHOLDERS]
- How has the media framed aspects of this policy area? What impact does this have on the policy development? [POPULAR MEDIA]
- What events, circumstances, or antecedents have given rise to an interest in this policy area (recent history, economic or political events, shifts in demographics, local or international conflicts)? [BACKGROUND INFORMATION, SCHOLARLY]
- What academic discplines would study aspects of my policy area? How would they approach the study of this topic? [SCHOLARLY]
- What are the key debates, issues, and/or controversies (historical or current) in this policy area? [SCHOLARLY, POPULAR MEDIA]
- Has this policy been implemented in other jurisdictions or contexts? What was the impact or result? [PROGRAM EVALUATION]
- What primary data (statistics, personal narratives, photographs, maps, surveys) would be useful in better understanding the scope of this policy area? [STATISTICS AND DATA]