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American Public Policy
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American Public Policy
Promise and Performance

Eleventh Edition
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August 2018 | 576 pages | CQ Press

“This is an in-depth yet quite accessible overlook of public policy in the United States…With this updated version, Peters’ text keeps up with the ever-changing world of American public policy while still giving students the tools to better understand this process.”
—Michael E. Bednarczuk, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

This updated edition of American Public Policy provides a comprehensive yet accessible overview of the policy-making process from procedural approaches and policy instruments to in-depth analysis of specific policy issues. The Eleventh Edition considers how policy has been impacted by recent economic and political developments. Not shying away from the complexity of governmental procedure, Peters ensures that the mechanisms of the policy process are understandable through insightful discussions of topical policy areas. 

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SAGE edge offers a robust online environment featuring an impressive array of free tools and resources for review, study, and further exploration, keeping both instructors and students on the cutting edge of teaching and learning. Learn more at edge.sagepub.com/peters11e.

Bundle American Public Policy, 11e with any of the following texts for only $5 more! 

 
 

 
LIST OF TABLES AND FIGURES
 
PREFACE
 
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
 
PART I THE NATURE OF PUBLIC POLICY
 
CHAPTER 1 What Is Public Policy
DEFINING PUBLIC POLICY

 
THE INSTRUMENTS OF PUBLIC POLICY

 
THE ENVIRONMENT OF PUBLIC POLICY

 
SUMMARY

 
 
CHAPTER 2 The Structure of Policymaking in American Government
FEDERALISM

 
SEPARATION OF POWERS

 
SUBGOVERNMENTS

 
PUBLIC AND PRIVATE

 
THE SIZE AND SHAPE OF THE PUBLIC SECTOR

 
SUMMARY

 
 
CHAPTER 3 Explaining Policy Choices
POWER AND PUBLIC POLICY

 
THE POLICY PROCESS—THE STAGES MODEL

 
INSTITUTIONAL MODELS OF POLICY

 
ADVOCACY-COALITION FRAMEWORK

 
POLICY CAUSES POLITICS

 
BOUNDED RATIONALITY, MULTIPLE STREAMS, AND INCREMENTALISM

 
THE PRIVATE SECTOR, IRON TRIANGLES, AND NETWORKS

 
OPTIMAL DECISION-MAKING

 
CONSTRUCTIVIST MODELS

 
SUMMARY

 
 
PART II THE MAKING OF PUBLIC POLICY
 
CHAPTER 4 Agenda Setting and Public Policy
AGENDA SETTING

 
KINDS OF AGENDAS

 
WHO SETS AGENDAS?

 
FROM PROBLEM TO ISSUE: HOW TO GET PROBLEMS ON THE AGENDA

 
FOCUSING EVENTS

 
POLICY FORMULATION

 
POLICY DESIGN

 
SUMMARY

 
 
CHAPTER 5 Legitimating Policy Choices
LEGISLATIVE LEGITIMATION

 
REGULATIONS AND THE ADMINISTRATIVE PROCESS

 
THE COURTS

 
POPULAR LEGITIMATION

 
SUMMARY

 
 
CHAPTER 6 Organizations and Implementation
DRAMATIS PERSONAE

 
IMPLEMENTATION

 
THE ORGANIZATIONAL SETTING

 
SUMMARY

 
 
CHAPTER 7 Budgeting: Allocation and Public Policy
CHARACTERISTICS OF THE FEDERAL BUDGET

 
THE BUDGET CYCLE

 
PROBLEMS IN THE BUDGET PROCESS

 
THE OVERHANG

 
REFORMING BUDGETING: LARGE-SCALE APPROACHES IN THE 1960S AND 1970S

 
FROM SCALPELS TO AXES: BUDGET REFORM FROM THE 1980S TO THE 2000S

 
SUMMARY

 
 
CHAPTER 8 Evaluation and Policy Change
PROBLEMS IN EVALUATING PUBLIC PROGRAMS

 
POLICY CHANGE

 
SUMMARY

 
 
PART III SUBSTANTIVE POLICY ISSUES
 
CHAPTER 9 Economic Policy
BACKGROUND

 
THE GOALS OF ECONOMIC POLICY

 
THE INSTRUMENTS OF ECONOMIC POLICY

 
SUMMARY

 
 
CHAPTER 10 Tax Policy
BACKGROUND

 
PUBLIC OPINION AND TAXATION

 
CHOICES IN TAX POLICY

 
THE POLITICS OF TAX REFORM

 
SUMMARY

 
 
CHAPTER 11 Health Care Policies
PROBLEMS IN HEALTH CARE

 
THE AFFORDABLE CARE ACT OF 2010

 
PUBLIC PROGRAMS IN HEALTH CARE

 
HEALTH CARE REGULATION

 
OPTIONS FOR NATIONAL HEALTH INSURANCE

 
SUMMARY

 
 
CHAPTER 12 Social Security and Welfare
SOCIAL INSURANCE

 
MEANS-TESTED PROGRAMS

 
THE PERSISTENCE OF POVERTY IN THE UNITED STATES

 
SUMMARY

 
 
CHAPTER 13 Education Policy
THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT’S ROLE IN EDUCATION

 
ISSUES OF EDUCATION POLICY

 
SUMMARY

 
 
CHAPTER 14 Energy and the Environment
BACKGROUND

 
ENERGY SOURCES

 
THE FORMATION OF ENERGY POLICY

 
ENVIRONMENTAL POLICIES

 
IMPLEMENTATION OF ENVIRONMENTAL CONTROLS

 
SUMMARY

 
 
CHAPTER 15 Defense and Law Enforcement
BACKGROUND

 
DEFENSE POLICY

 
PROBLEMS OF DEFENSE POLICY

 
LAW ENFORCEMENT

 
ISSUES IN LAW ENFORCEMENT POLICY

 
SUMMARY

 
 
CHAPTER 16 Social Values and Public Policy
BACKGROUND

 
ABORTION AND REPRODUCTIVE RIGHTS

 
GAY RIGHTS: POLITICS COMES OUT OF THE CLOSET

 
THE SEPARATION OF CHURCH AND STATE: SCHOOL PRAYER AND OTHER ISSUES

 
LEGALIZATION OF MARIJUANA

 
SUMMARY

 
 
PART IV ANALYZING PUBLIC POLICY
 
CHAPTER 17 Policy Analysis: Cost-Benefit Analysis and Ethical Analysis
COST-BENEFIT ANALYSIS

 
ETHICAL ANALYSIS OF PUBLIC POLICY

 
SUMMARY

 
 
NOTES
 
INDEX

Supplements

Instructor Resources Site

SAGE edge for Instructors supports your teaching by making it easy to integrate quality content and create a rich learning environment for students. 

  • Test banks provide a diverse range of pre-written options as well as the opportunity to edit any question and/or insert your own personalized questions to effectively assess students’ progress and understanding.
  • Editable, chapter-specific PowerPoint® slides offer complete flexibility for creating a multimedia presentation for your course. 
  • Lecture notes summarize key concepts by chapter to help you prepare for lectures and class discussions.
  • Chapter summaries reinforce the most important material covered in each chapter.
  • Chapter-specific discussion questions help launch discussion by engaging students with the material and reinforcing important concepts. 
Student Study Site

SAGE edge for Students helps students accomplish their coursework goals in an easy-to-use learning environment.

  • Mobile-friendly eFlashcards strengthen understanding of key terms and concepts. 
  • Mobile-friendly practice quizzes allow students to independently assess their mastery of course material.
  • Chapter-specific discussion questions help launch discussion by engaging students with the material and reinforcing important concepts. 
  • Chapter summaries reinforce the most important material covered in each chapter.
  • Multimedia content, including links to a range of online articles and videos, appeals to a diverse set of learning styles.

“This is an in-depth yet quite accessible overlook of public policy in the United States…With this updated version, Peters’ text keeps up with the ever-changing world of American public policy while still giving students the tools to better understand this process.”

Michael E. Bednarczuk
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

“American Public Policy delivers its readers a well-organized and highly accessible overview of the field of public policy. By striking an effective balance of public policy theory, real-world data, and historical examples, Peters’ text has become an essential component of my introductory public policy courses.”

Thomas W. Haase
Sam Houston State University

“American public policy is one of the most detailed and compelling text on domestic public policy on the market.”

Linda M. Trautman
Ohio University – Lancaster

“This text is accessibly written without being overly-simplistic, thorough without being too weighty, and it discusses issues relevant to modern students of American public policy.”

Zach Wilhide
Old Dominion University

“Peters’ text is a comprehensive approach to the process, substance, and context of policymaking. In an era where politics seemingly trumps the study of policy as an academic field, Peters shows his reader the technical aspects of policymaking and the theories underlying policy decisions. At the same time, Peters makes the topics approachable to students from many personal and academic backgrounds.”

Andrea M. Jacks
Arizona State University

“A high-level introduction to American politics and political science (as it relates to policymaking), public and political institutions, the construction, implementation and evaluation of public policies, and the politics and mechanics of specific policy instruments and areas.”

Michael Landon-Murry
University of Colorado, Colorado Springs
Key features

NEW TO THIS EDITION: 

  • New content covering budget reforms, deficit control, 2017 tax legislation, police brutality and President Trump’s trade policies.
  • Updated tables and charts ensure students have access to the latest data in the field. 
  • New and updated photos illustrate important points.
  • SAGE edge provides students helpful tools, including eFlashcards, practice quizzes, and more, in one easy-to-use online environment. 

 

KEY FEATURES: 

  • Evaluates a variety of approaches to the policymaking process, including institutional, economic, constructivist, and stages models, along with concepts such as the advocacy coalition framework, bounded rationality, and instrumentalism.
  • Introduces two forms of policy analysis—one that depends on economic assumptions and attempts to make government more efficient and cost-effective; another that focuses on the normative element of public policy— that help readers begin to develop an answer to the question “What is good policy?”
  • Background sections at the beginning of each chapter provide valuable context. 
  • Chapter Summaries help students focus on key takeaways.

Sample Materials & Chapters

Chapter 1. What is Public Policy?

Chapter 3. Explaining Policy Choices


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