Skip to main content

Leadership & Management

Thurgood Marshall Jr.

Public policy practitioners, regardless of technical specialization, must lead people, manage resources and be held accountable for their actions.

Public policy missions are accomplished through collaboration — across the public, private nonprofit and business sectors and multiple levels of governance from local to global. Successful implementation of the public interest requires artful and ethical leadership of diverse individuals and groups including a motivated workforce, an engaged public and diverse stakeholders with varying and often competing interests.

At the School, we are training the next generation of policy leaders on how to not only navigate, but excel at managing these relationships. Our graduates gain practical knowledge and skill in:

  • Articulating an organizational vision and operationalizing it
  • Managing budgets and financial resources and
  • Understanding and using appropriate governance tools, such as contracts and grants

Through a range of experiential learning opportunities, case-based class work and attention to current research on practical leadership and management challenges, our students are equipped to link theory to practice. The collaboration between research and practical experience allows students to hone public service motivation and develop critical thinking skills to address the complex problems of today, and tomorrow.



See all Leadership and Management faculty
View All Publications

Courses You Might be Interested In

View All Courses
3 Credit(s)

A survey course, focusing on public policy institutions and analytical issues as well as on overview of key public policy problems. Students will be introduced to public policy as a discipline, with a brief overview of the actors and institutions involved in the process, and familiarize themselves with the kinds of problems typically requiring public action. The course will examine these problems from a multijurisdictional and multisectoral perspective. Specific policy areas examined include education policy, health policy, economic and budgetary policy, criminal justice policy, environmental policy, and national and homeland security policy. The course should permit students to have broad foundational exposure to the field that will give them a solid base for more advanced courses.
Schedule of Classes

3 Credit(s)

Provides frameworks, tools, and skills to improve program results in an environment where policy challenges span organizational boundaries and third parties implement programs. Several results-oriented frameworks and case illustrations will be examined in depth, including the Government Performance and Results Act, federal, state and local Performance-Stat systems and the use of performance dashboards, executive branch performance management initiatives, and international and US initiatives to foster civic engagement through open government and web based performance reporting.
Schedule of Classes

Faculty: Chris Mihm
3 Credit(s)

Covers the fundamentals of accounting and financial management for public and nonprofit organizations. Through course readings, case studies, and short assignments, students will learn how to understand and use public sector financial information to inform decision making. The first half of the course will focus on: operating budgets, cash budgets, tools for evaluating capital budgeting decisions, and an introduction to accounting principles. Topics in the second half of the course include financial reporting, financial condition analysis, and unique aspects of accounting for public and nonprofit organizations. Along the way, students will gain familiarity with spreadsheet applications and financial calculations. By the end of the course, students should be able to read and interpret financial information and perform straightforward financial analyses. 
Schedule of Classes

Prerequisite(s): PLCY688R recommended

Faculty: Nathan Dietz
3 Credit(s)

The federal government implements virtually all of its programs in health, education, social services, labor, housing and welfare via states, local governments and not-for-profit organizations. This cross sector governance is the focus of the course and provides both theoretical understanding and practical grounding of it. This course focuses on the roles and relationships of institutions in each of these sectors in pursuing public purposes such as emergency management, economic development, environmental protection, transportation, education, and human investment. Restricted to PLCY majors or permission of instructor. 
Schedule of Classes

Prerequisite(s): PLCY711 or PLCY688G