Policy Analysis for Social Workers

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Richard K. Caputo

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    Acknowledgements

    SOCIAL WORK IN THE NEW CENTURY

    Michael Reisch, Social Policy and Social Justice

    Mary C. Ruffolo, Brian Perron, Ph.D. and Elizabeth H. Voshel, Direct Social Work Practice: Theories and Skills for Becoming an Evidence Based Practitioner

    Lisa E. Cox, Carolyn Tice and Dennis D. Long, Introduction to Social Work: An Advocacy-Based Profession

    Lists of Tables, Figures, & Cases in Point

    Tables
    Cases in Point
    • Case in Point 1.1: ACA and Health Insurance Coverage of Contraceptives 5
    • Case in Point 1.2: Cognitive and Behavioral Biases 15
    • Case in Point 2.1: Health Care and the Market 22
    • Case in Point 2.2: Universal Preschool as a Public Benefit 25
    • Case in Point 2.3: ACA and Adverse Selection 27
    • Case in Point 3.1: Promoting Health 43
    • Case in Point 4.1: Advocacy, Credibility, and Educational Vouchers 59
    • Case in Point 4.2: Universal Versus Targeted Approaches to Poverty Reduction 60
    • Case in Point 4.3: The Supreme Court and Affirmative Action 68
    • Case in Point 4.4: Child Protective Services and Professional Discretion 71
    • Case in Point 4.5: ACA and Judicial Decision 73
    • Case in Point 5.1: Women, Work, and Wages 80
    • Case in Point 5.2: Increasing the Federal Hourly Minimum Wage to $9.00 83
    • Case in Point 5.3: Powerful But Less Credible Analysis: Losing Ground 87
    • Case in Point 5.4: Income Tax Progressivity 91
    • Case in Point 8.1: The Comprehensive Child Development Act—Vetoed 141
    • Case in Point 8.2: Affordable Care Act (ACA) Repeal Bill H.R. 45 Referred to Congressional Committees 143
    • Case in Point 8.3: Ending the Aid to Families with Dependent Children Program 148
    • Case in Point 9.1: Implementing Job Training and Workforce Legislation 159
    • Case in Point 9.2: Street-Level Bureaucrats, TANF, and Medicaid Programs 164
    • Case in Point 10.1: Measuring Performance of the Workforce Investment Act 171
    • Case in Point 11.1: Inequality Explained and Justified 199
    • Case in Point Appendix B.1: Think Tanks and Welfare Reform 242

    Introduction

    This book introduces students to the world of policy analysis. It addresses postmodern challenges to scientific ethos and their implications for social workers seeking to undertake policy analysis in a credible, constructive, and critical manner. The book also provides working knowledge and requisite skills to enable social workers to analyze policies and programs, with client advocacy, professional integrity, and social justice in mind. Before we start, however, consider the following bill (H.R. 45) as introduced in its entirety into the House of Representatives of the U.S. Congress:

    113th CONGRESS

    1st Session

    H. R. 45

    To repeal the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and health care-related provisions in the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010.

    IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

    January 3, 2013

    Mrs. BACHMANN introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Energy and Commerce, and in addition to the Committees on Education and the Workforce, Ways and Means, the Judiciary, Natural Resources, Rules, House Administration, Appropriations, and the Budget, for a period to be subsequently determined by the Speaker, in each case for consideration of such provisions as fall within the jurisdiction of the committee concerned

    A BILL

    To repeal the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and health care-related provisions in the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

    Section 1. Repeal of PPACA and Health Care-Related Provisions in the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010
    • PPACA— Effective as of the enactment of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Public Law 111-148), such Act (other than subsection (d) of section 1899A of the Social Security Act, as added and amended by sections 3403 and 10320 of such Act) is repealed, and the provisions of law amended or repealed by such Act (other than such subsection (d)) are restored or revived as if such Act had not been enacted.
    • Health Care-Related Provisions in the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010— Effective as of the enactment of the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010 (Public Law 111-152), title I and subtitle B of title II of such Act are repealed, and the provisions of law amended or repealed by such title or subtitle, respectively, are restored or revived as if such title and subtitle had not been enacted.
    Sec. 2. Budgetary Effects of this Act

    The budgetary effects of this Act, for the purpose of complying with the Statutory Pay-As-You-Go Act of 2010, shall be determined by reference to the latest statement titled ‘Budgetary Effects of PAYGO Legislation’ for this Act, submitted for printing in the Congressional Record by the Chairman of the Committee on the Budget of the House of Representatives, as long as such statement has been submitted prior to the vote on passage of this Act.

    Source: Retrieved from http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/BILLS-113hr45ih/pdf/BILLS-113hr45ih.pdf

    If you were the staff person asked to analyze H.R. 45 as policy, how would you go about it? What challenges would you face in assessing its merits and the likelihood of this bill's being enacted by Congress and signed by the president? Who is likely to support H.R. 45; who oppose it; for what reasons? What underlying assumptions would influence their decision? Aside from self-interests of individual taxpayers and health insurance companies, what public interest arguments might opponents and supporters advance to augment their respective positions? What was happening socioeconomically and politically during the 2000s to prompt passage of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (P.L. 111–148) and health care-related provisions in the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010 (P.L. 111–152) in 2010? How might knowledge of those earlier conditions and circumstances affect how you might go about analyzing H.R. 45 now? If the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) were to formally recommend rejecting this bill and were subsequently accused of working against the public interest by increasing health care costs and penalizing those who prefer to do without health insurance, would you be inclined to advocate for or against its passage? Why? How would you assess the merits of arguments for or against H.R. 45? How would passage/defeat of this bill serve social justice? How certain are you about related judgments and conclusions? Given gaps in the related knowledge base, how certain would you have to be to make a reasonable decision about adopting H.R. 45?

    Welcome to the world of policy analysis, one that presents formidable challenges to social workers seeking to retain a sense of professional integrity as analysts while fulfilling the mandate to pursue social justice. Both integrity and social justice are two core values of the social work profession (National Association of Social Workers, 2011), and in the world of policy analysis they may come into conflict with one another. Social workers having a requisite set of conceptual, critical, practical, and technical skills are better able to adjudicate competing or conflicting demands of professional integrity and social justice. This book is meant to highlight what such skill sets entail, thereby enabling social workers to effectively meet such challenges and to avoid conflating advocacy for and research about public policies in general and social welfare policies in particular (Manski, 2013). It significantly elaborates an earlier chapter-length formulation of related concerns, concepts, and skills requisite to policy analysis that appears elsewhere in this Sage social work series (Caputo, 2013; Reisch, 2013). This book also draws from and further elaborates on earlier concerns about and approaches to integrating norms and values into evaluations of social policies (Caputo, 1989).

    The book highlights how policies are invariably value-laden, so policy analysts must possess conceptual and technical skills to enable them to identify and assess values that underlie policies in question and those that may be ignored or downplayed. Social justice is one such value that social workers use in their assessment of policies and in determining societal priorities. Policy analysis may serve a variety of purposes, contingent upon the context in which it is carried out. As such, its relation to policymakers and others who have a stake or an interest in the particulars of any given policy complicates the role of the policy analyst. A related goal of the book is to show how policy analysis can be done in a way that enables social workers to retain professional integrity. The integrity of policy analysts, in general, and of agenda-driven policy analysts in particular, including social workers guided by the professional mandate to seek social justice, may be severely tested unless safeguards are in place. Another goal of this book is to highlight those safeguards that enhance the integrity and legitimacy of the practice of policy analysis itself.

    The book is meant for social workers, both students and professionals. Given the technical nature of policy analysis and the conflicting values associated with making and implementing social welfare policies, some parts of the book are “easier reads” than others. Some concepts are easier to grasp than others, particularly those that lend themselves quite readily to what we know about human behavior and the social environment. I suspect that some of the philosophical and economic concepts introduced in the book might be more challenging and require more sustained attention. The book does require thoughtful reading, and in some places rereading, to achieve the degree of conceptual clarity and understanding essential for undertaking credible policy analysis. The casual reader may too easily get discouraged. As a life-long learner, however, I encourage you to stick with it, even if that entails a second reading of some material or going beyond the text to seek out additional information when further knowledge is desired. The rewards of increasing your knowledge base accordingly are well worth it.

    Organization of the Book

    The book is divided into four major Sections. Section I has three chapters, which explore the relationship of science, values, and policy analysis. It ends with an introductory segue to the 3Ps of policy analysis, which form the central core Sections II–IV: policy as product, process, and performance. Chapter 1 discusses the postmodern challenge to the scientific ethos and its implications for social workers seeking to undertake policy analysis in a credible, constructive, and critical manner. It also distinguishes value neutrality from value relevance in the social sciences and shows how impartial or objective analysis of relevant issues germane to social workers and other helping professionals is both desirable and possible. Chapter 1 concludes with a discussion of the role of critical thinking in social work practice and policy analysis.

    Upon successful completion of the skill building exercises of Chapter 1, students will have mastered the following Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) Competencies and Practice Behaviors:

    Chapter 1 CSWE Core Competencies
    #Description
    2.1.1

    Identify as a Professional Social Worker and Conduct Oneself Accordingly

    Attend to professional roles and boundaries

    2.1.3

    Apply Critical Thinking to Inform and Communicate Professional Judgments

    Demonstrate effective oral and written communication in working with individuals, families, groups, organizations, communities, and colleagues

    2.1.9

    Respond to Contexts That Shape Practice

    Continuously discover, appraise, and attend to changing locales, populations, scientific and technological development, and emerging societal trends to provide relevant services

    Provide leadership in promoting sustainable changes in service delivery and practice to improve the quality of social services

    Source: Adapted from Council on Social Work Education (2012). Educational policy and accreditation standards. Washington, DC: Author. Retrieved from http://www.cswe.org/file.aspx?id=13780

    Chapter 2 discusses the role of government in the economy and society and introduces several basic micro- and macroeconomic concepts in the context of traditional market failures. Public goods, externalities, natural monopolies, and information asymmetry—four commonly recognized market failures—are the subject matter of microeconomics. Business cycles and related issues such as unemployment and inflation are the subject matter of macroeconomics. The chapter also provides an overview of economists' ways of thinking about the role of the market vis-à-vis government when addressing policy-relevant resource allocation or distributional issues. Pareto efficiency—that is, the inability to make someone better off without making someone else worse off—is contrasted with the social welfare function—that is, the allocation of goods that maximizes the greatest good—as a basis for allocating goods. Alternative social welfare functions—namely, utilitarian, Rawlsian, and multiplicative —are discussed in light of how they would lead to adoption of different policies. Upon finishing the chapter, students will have learned that (1) despite limitations and caveats, economic concepts and ways of thinking are integral to policy analysis, and (2) allocation mechanisms other than Pareto efficiency justify different policy options.

    Upon successful completion of the skill building exercises of Chapter 2, students will have mastered the following CSWE Competencies and Practice Behaviors:

    Chapter 2 CSWE Core Competencies
    #Description
    2.1.3

    Apply Critical Thinking to Inform and Communicate Professional Judgments

    Demonstrate effective oral and written communication in working with individuals, families, groups, organizations, communities, and colleagues

    2.1.7

    Apply Knowledge of Human Behavior and the Social Environment

    Utilize conceptual frameworks to guide the processes of assessment, intervention, and evaluation

    Critique and apply knowledge to understand person and environment

    2.1.8

    Engage in Policy Practice to Advance Social and Economic Well-Being and to Deliver Effective Social Work Services

    Collaborate with colleagues and clients for effective policy action

    Source: Adapted from Council on Social Work Education (2012). Educational policy and accreditation standards. Washington, DC: Author. Retrieved from http://www.cswe.org/file.aspx?id=13780

    Chapter 3 examines differing views about the appropriate role of the policy analyst based on several conceptual formulations and empirical studies. It provides a typology of roles, classified as objective technician, client's advocate, and issue advocate, distinguishable by three fundamental values: analytical integrity, responsibility to clients, and adherence to one's conception of Good. Chapter 3 also examines advocacy and ethics as integral components of social work practice and the problems policy analysis pose to the profession. Particular attention is paid to merits and limitations of treating or viewing social problems as a function of claims-making activity. A major argument of Chapter 3 is that in determining what is to be done, failure to assess and obtain agreement about the nature and extent of a social problem, however contested related measures and values might be, makes it exceptionally difficult if not impossible to determine if social justice goals are being met or thwarted by policy actions.

    Chapter 3 also discusses criteria about deciding the appropriate type of analysis that a given situation calls for, contrasting what needs to be done and what one would like to be done. It raises such questions as the extent to which any given analysis should aim at root causes or seek pragmatic adjustments; be comprehensive or seek short-term relevance; rely on consensual or confrontational procedures; and/or be subject to rational assessment or democratic processes. Upon completion of the chapter, students will have learned that (1) the roles of policy analysts vary by values associated with analytical integrity, responsibility to clients, and one's conception of Good; and (2) failure to assess and obtain agreement about the nature and extent of a social problem makes it impossible to determine if social justice goals are being met or thwarted by policy actions.

    Upon successful completion of the skill building exercises of Chapter 3, students will have mastered the following CSWE Competencies and Practice Behaviors:

    Chapter 3 CSWE Core Competencies
    #Description
    2.1.1

    Identify as a Professional Social Worker and Conduct Oneself Accordingly

    Practice personal reflection and self-correction to ensure continual professional development

    Attend to professional roles and boundaries

    2.1.2

    Apply Social Work Ethical Principles to Guide Professional Practice

    Make ethical decisions by applying standards of the NASW Code of Ethics Tolerate ambiguity in resolving ethical conflicts

    2.1.3

    Apply Critical Thinking to Inform and Communicate Professional Judgments

    Demonstrate effective oral and written communication in working with individuals, families, groups, organizations, communities, and colleagues

    Source: Adapted from Council on Social Work Education (2012). Educational policy and accreditation standards. Washington, DC: Author. Retrieved from http://www.cswe.org/file.aspx?id=13780

    Section II has four chapters that explore how to go about analyzing policy products—that is, the laws and bills about which legislative bodies such as the U.S. Congress and state assemblies deliberate and pass. Chapters 47 are meant to help social workers think through what distinguishes sound or desirable polices worth advocating for from those that might have adverse consequences or be deemed less than desirable. Priority is given to policy as product based on the assumption that advocacy efforts are enhanced when social workers have a clearer understanding of what they are advocating for and the likely consequences of achieving their objectives. Readers who are initially or primarily interested in the advocacy dimension of policy practice—that is, where, when, and how to intervene in the policy-making process or in how policies are implemented—can go directly to Section III, Policy as Process.

    Chapter 4 addresses an elemental task of policy analysis—namely, getting a handle on what the policy states about who gets what and under what circumstances. It identifies and discusses criteria for evaluating policy proposals and asks several basic questions, answers to which provide a descriptive summary of policy products. Upon completion of the chapter, students will have learned that (1) policy analysts need to be alert to which and how criteria for assessing the merits of a policy are used; (2) policy analysts have a responsibility to assist clients in sorting through the relative weights attributed to evaluative criteria, including effectiveness, efficiency, equity, freedom, political feasibility, social acceptability, administrative feasibility, and technical feasibility, and (3) asking and answering such basic questions as “Who gets what?” and “Under what conditions?” will provide a working descriptive summary of the policy under scrutiny, particularly about types of benefits and eligibility requirements. Students will also develop a skill set enabling them to (1) identify and apply criteria for assessing the merit of eligibility rules, including those based on prior contributions, administrative rules and regulations, private contracts, professional discretion, administrative discretion, judicial decision, means testing, and attachment to the workforce, (2) identify and apply criteria for evaluating the merit of linking policies to social problems and eligibility rules, including fit of analysis to the social problem, correspondence between social problem theory and social policy or program theory, correspondence between eligibility rules and target specifications of the social problem analysis, and (3) identify and assess the merit of applying criteria specific to eligibility rules, including stigmatization, off-targeted benefits, as well as trade-offs in evaluating eligibility rules.

    Upon successful completion of the skill building exercises of Chapter 4, students will have mastered the following CSWE Competencies and Practice Behaviors:

    Chapter 4 CSWE Core Competencies
    #Description
    2.1.2

    Apply Social Work Ethical Principles to Guide Professional Practice

    Make ethical decisions by applying standards of the NASW Code of Ethics

    Tolerate ambiguity in resolving ethical conflicts

    Apply strategies of ethical reasoning to arrive at principled decisions

    2.1.3

    Apply Critical Thinking to Inform and Communicate Professional Judgments

    Demonstrate effective oral and written communication in working with individuals, families, groups, organizations, communities, and colleagues

    2.1.4

    Engage Diversity and Difference in Practice

    Recognize the extent to which a culture's structures and values may oppress, marginalize, alienate, or create or enhance privilege and power

    2.1.5

    Advance Human Rights and Social and Economic Justice

    Understand the forms and mechanisms of oppression and discrimination

    2.1.7

    Apply Knowledge of Human Behavior and the Social Environment

    Utilize conceptual frameworks to guide the processes of assessment, intervention, and evaluation

    Critique and apply knowledge to understand person and environment

    2.1.8

    Engage in Policy Practice to Advance Social and Economic Well-Being and to Deliver Effective Social Work Services

    Analyze, formulate, and advocate for policies that advance social well-being

    2.1.9

    Respond to Contexts That Shape Practice

    Continuously discover, appraise, and attend to changing locales, populations, scientific and technological development, and emerging societal trends to provide relevant services

    Source: Adapted from Council on Social Work Education (2012). Educational policy and accreditation standards. Washington, DC: Author. Retrieved from http://www.cswe.org/file.aspx?id=13780

    Chapter 5 focuses on the goodness of fit between proposed policies and social problems they are meant to address. It highlights the importance of ensuring a close correspondence between the theoretical bases of both social problems and policies or programs that are being considered or have been adopted to address them. The chapter also discusses how policies are financed, including both public and private sources, in light of ideological, political, and practical rationales or justifications associated with them. Upon completion of the chapter, students will have learned that (1) causal assumptions embedded in theories about social problems drive or affect policy or program criteria for determining who gets what type of social provisioning, (2) the extent to which eligibility rules do not correspond to concrete indicators of sufficiently defined social problems, the designated benefits and services may get directed to those population groups who are not the main object of the policy or program, (3) certain types of social welfare provisioning are prone to stigmatizing program beneficiaries or clients, and (4) financing social welfare provisioning in the United States includes government revenue generated primarily from income and payroll taxes, and private sector philanthropy and private sources of funds from philanthropies and employers, and (5) the type of financing reflects ideological and political considerations.

    Upon successful completion of the skill building exercises of Chapter 5, students will have mastered the following CSWE Competencies and Practice Behaviors:

    Chapter 5 CSWE Core Competencies
    #Description
    2.1.2

    Apply Social Work Ethical Principles to Guide Professional Practice

    Recognize and manage personal values in a way that allows professional values to guide practice

    Make ethical decisions by applying standards of the NASW Code of Ethics

    Tolerate ambiguity in resolving ethical conflicts

    2.1.3

    Apply Critical Thinking to Inform and Communicate Professional Judgments

    Demonstrate effective oral and written communication in working with individuals, families, groups, organizations, communities, and colleagues

    2.1.5

    Advance Human Rights and Social and Economic Justice

    Engage in practices that advance social and economic justice

    2.1.7

    Apply Knowledge of Human Behavior and the Social Environment

    Utilize conceptual frameworks to guide the processes of assessment, intervention, and evaluation

    Critique and apply knowledge to understand person and environment

    2.1.8

    Engage in Policy Practice to Advance Social and Economic Well-Being and to Deliver Effective Social Work Services

    Analyze, formulate, and advocate for policies that advance social well-being

    2.1.9

    Respond to Contexts That Shape Practice

    Continuously discover, appraise, and attend to changing locales, populations, scientific and technological development, and emerging societal trends to provide relevant services

    Source: Adapted from Council on Social Work Education (2012). Educational policy and accreditation standards. Washington, DC: Author. Retrieved from http://www.cswe.org/file.aspx?id=13780

    Chapter 6 presents two methodological procedures used by policy analysts—namely, cost-benefit analysis and risk assessment. It describes strengths and limitations of each procedure. The chapter also presents several typologies for comparing alternative policies aimed at the same social problem. Upon completion of the chapter, students will know what goes into conducting cost-benefit analyses and risk assessments, while understanding the limitations of using them.

    Upon successful completion of the skill building exercises of Chapter 6, students will have mastered the following CSWE Competencies and Practice Behaviors:

    Chapter 6 CSWE Core Competencies
    #Description
    2.1.3

    Apply Critical Thinking to Inform and Communicate Professional Judgments

    Distinguish, appraise, and integrate multiple sources of knowledge, including research-based knowledge and practice wisdom

    Analyze models of assessment, prevention, intervention, and evaluation

    Demonstrate effective oral and written communication in working with individuals, families, groups, organizations, communities, and colleagues

    2.1.4

    Engage Diversity and Difference in Practice

    Recognize the extent to which a culture's structures and values may oppress, marginalize, alienate, or create or enhance privilege and power

    2.1.5

    Advance Human Rights and Social and Economic Justice

    Understand the forms and mechanisms of oppression and discrimination

    2.1.6

    Engage in Research-Informed Practice and Practice-Informed Research

    Use research evidence to inform practice

    2.1.7

    Apply Knowledge of Human Behavior and the Social Environment

    Utilize conceptual frameworks to guide the processes of assessment, intervention, and evaluation

    Critique and apply knowledge to understand person and environment

    2.1.8

    Engage in Policy Practice to Advance Social and Economic Well-Being and to Deliver Effective Social Work Services

    Analyze, formulate, and advocate for policies that advance social well-being

    Source: Adapted from Council on Social Work Education (2012). Educational policy and accreditation standards. Washington, DC: Author. Retrieved from http://www.cswe.org/file.aspx?id=13780

    Chapter 7 provides a step-by-step illustration of applying cost-benefit analysis to assess the merits of taxing alcohol policies to save lives. Upon completion of the chapter, students will know how to conduct a detailed cost-benefit analysis, while understanding its limitations. Students will also know how to lay out alternative policies in a way that enhances their capacity to make informed choices about the advantages and disadvantages of adopting one policy option among others.

    Upon successful completion of the skill building exercises of Chapter 7, students will have mastered the following CSWE Competencies and Practice Behaviors:

    Chapter 7 CSWE Core Competencies
    #Description
    2.1.3

    Apply Critical Thinking to Inform and Communicate Professional Judgments

    Distinguish, appraise, and integrate multiple sources of knowledge, including research-based knowledge and practice wisdom

    Analyze models of assessment, prevention, intervention, and evaluation

    Demonstrate effective oral and written communication in working with individuals, families, groups, organizations, communities, and colleagues

    2.1.6

    Engage in Research-Informed Practice and Practice-Informed Research

    Use research evidence to inform practice

    2.1.7

    Apply Knowledge of Human Behavior and the Social Environment

    Utilize conceptual frameworks to guide the processes of assessment, intervention, and evaluation

    Critique and apply knowledge to understand person and environment

    2.1.8

    Engage in Policy Practice to Advance Social and Economic Well-Being and to Deliver Effective Social Work Services

    Analyze, formulate, and advocate for policies that advance social well-being

    Source: Adapted from Council on Social Work Education (2012). Educational policy and accreditation standards. Washington, DC: Author. Retrieved from http://www.cswe.org/file.aspx?id=13780

    Section III focuses on policy as process, which encompasses policy making and implementation. Chapter 8 discusses salient aspects of the policy-making process in representative democracies. It focuses on the role of the U.S. Congress, highlighting how laws are made, the sources of legislation, forms of congressional action, and the nature and role of congressional committees. The chapter discusses conceptual frameworks and theories about policy-making processes that have implications for policy analysis, including elite theory, interest group theory, institutional rational choice theory, path (state) dependence theory, advocacy coalition, and social construction frameworks. The chapter also describes the nature of policy formation and agenda setting, highlighting the roles of the public at large and elected officials. Finally, it presents a typology of political feasibility, suggesting that when deliberating about the likelihood of adopting any given policy product, policymakers and policy analysts should assess such practical concerns as strategic, institutional, psychological, and behavioral feasibility. Upon completion of Chapter 8, students will be able to (1) identify components of political processes associated with policy formation and adoption, and (2) know how to account for political and other self-interest in the policy-making process.

    Upon successful completion of the skill building exercises of Chapter 8, students will have mastered the following CSWE Competencies and Practice Behaviors:

    Chapter 8 CSWE Core Competencies
    #Description
    2.1.3

    Apply Critical Thinking to Inform and Communicate Professional Judgments

    Distinguish, appraise, and integrate multiple sources of knowledge, including research-based knowledge and practice wisdom

    Analyze models of assessment, prevention, intervention, and evaluation

    Demonstrate effective oral and written communication in working with individuals, families, groups, organizations, communities, and colleagues

    2.1.4

    Engage Diversity and Difference in Practice

    Recognize the extent to which a culture's structures and values may oppress, marginalize, alienate, or create or enhance privilege and power

    2.1.5

    Advance Human Rights and Social and Economic Justice

    Understand the forms and mechanisms of oppression and discrimination

    2.1.7

    Apply Knowledge of Human Behavior and the Social Environment

    Utilize conceptual frameworks to guide the processes of assessment, intervention, and evaluation

    Critique and apply knowledge to understand person and environment

    2.1.8

    Engage in Policy Practice to Advance Social and Economic Well-Being and to Deliver Effective Social Work Services

    Analyze, formulate, and advocate for policies that advance social well-being

    2.1.9

    Respond to Contexts That Shape Practice

    Continuously discover, appraise, and attend to changing locales, populations, scientific and technological development, and emerging societal trends to provide relevant services

    Source: Adapted from Council on Social Work Education (2012). Educational policy and accreditation standards. Washington, DC: Author. Retrieved from http://www.cswe.org/file.aspx?id=13780

    Chapter 9 highlights the importance of considering factors affecting implementation of a policy during the policymaking process. It presents a theoretical framework to help enable policy analysts to assess the effectiveness of the means of implementation. Two basic approaches to thinking systematically about implementation, forward mapping and backward mapping are highlighted. An overarching multilevel logic of governance (LOG) framework is presented in detail. The “black box” approach to treating variables highlighted within the LOG framework is discussed. Types of policy outputs are described, to enable policy analysts to make appropriate linkages between statutory and non-statutory factors affecting implementation processes. This chapter also identifies practical considerations about implementation, with particular focus on the potential for unintended consequences of a policy. The chapter concludes with a discussion of how street-level bureaucrats such as mid-level government administrators and in-the-field professionals such as social workers function at times as de facto policymakers, often at variance with legislative intent when implementing policies.

    Upon completion of the chapter, students will be able to (1) develop a logic of analysis of process associated with governance, showing in effect how politics, policymaking, public management, and service delivery are hierarchically linked with one another in the determination of public policy outputs and outcomes; and (2) assess the organizational culture about the use of discretion and how that culture affects the likelihood of street-level bureaucrats taking actions they deem necessary to bring about outcomes they consider fair, despite constraints that would dictate otherwise.

    Upon successful completion of the skill building exercises in Chapter 9, students will have mastered the following CSWE Competencies and Practice Behaviors:

    Chapter 9 CSWE Core Competencies
    #Description
    2.1.2

    Apply Social Work Ethical Principles to Guide Professional Practice

    Tolerate ambiguity in resolving ethical conflicts

    Apply strategies of ethical reasoning to arrive at principled decisions

    2.1.3

    Apply Critical Thinking to Inform and Communicate Professional Judgments

    Distinguish, appraise, and integrate multiple sources of knowledge, including research-based knowledge and practice wisdom

    Analyze models of assessment, prevention, intervention, and evaluation

    Demonstrate effective oral and written communication in working with individuals, families, groups, organizations, communities, and colleagues

    2.1.4

    Engage Diversity and Difference in Practice

    View themselves as learners and engage those with whom they work as informants

    2.1.5

    Advance Human Rights and Social and Economic Justice

    Understand the forms and mechanisms of oppression and discrimination

    2.1.7

    Apply Knowledge of Human Behavior and the Social Environment

    Utilize conceptual frameworks to guide the processes of assessment, intervention, and evaluation

    Critique and apply knowledge to understand person and environment

    2.1.8

    Engage in Policy Practice to Advance Social and Economic Well-Being and to Deliver Effective Social Work Services

    Analyze, formulate, and advocate for policies that advance social well-being

    2.1.9

    Respond to Contexts That Shape Practice

    Continuously discover, appraise, and attend to changing locales, populations, scientific and technological development, and emerging societal trends to provide relevant services

    Source: Adapted from Council on Social Work Education (2012). Educational policy and accreditation standards. Washington, DC: Author. Retrieved from http://www.cswe.org/file.aspx?id=13780

    Section IV focuses on policy as performance, the subject of Chapters 10 and 11, and concludes with a conceptual framework for program evaluation and policy analysis, the subject of the Epilogue. Chapter 10 discusses three main approaches to policy and program evaluation: pseudo-evaluation, formal evaluation, and decision-theoretic evaluation (Dunn, 2008). It examines the relation between values and evaluation, first by presenting a typology of evaluator valuing roles vis-à-vis stakeholders (Alkin, Vo, & Christie, 2012), and second, by discussing two major categories of evaluation models—namely, values-distanced evaluation models and values-salient evaluation models (Speer, 2010). Upon completion of the chapter, students will be able to (1) distinguish between and identify appropriate circumstances warranting implementation of pseudo-, formal, and decision-theoretic evaluations, (2) understand the logic behind making value-related judgments about the merits of performance-related program or policy evaluations, and (3) distinguish between and know the appropriate uses of explanatory and normative theories when evaluating program or policy outcomes.

    Upon successful completion of the skill building exercises in Chapter 10, students will have mastered the following CSWE Competencies and Practice Behaviors:

    Chapter 10 CSWE Core Competencies
    #Description
    2.1.3

    Apply Critical Thinking to Inform and Communicate Professional Judgments

    Distinguish, appraise, and integrate multiple sources of knowledge, including research-based knowledge and practice wisdom

    Analyze models of assessment, prevention, intervention, and evaluation

    Demonstrate effective oral and written communication in working with individuals, families, groups, organizations, communities, and colleagues

    2.1.7

    Apply Knowledge of Human Behavior and the Social Environment

    Utilize conceptual frameworks to guide the processes of assessment, intervention, and evaluation

    Critique and apply knowledge to understand person and environment

    2.1.9

    Respond to Contexts That Shape Practice

    Continuously discover, appraise, and attend to changing locales, populations, scientific and technological development, and emerging societal trends to provide relevant services

    2.1.10Engage, Assess, Intervene, and Evaluate With Individuals, Families, Groups, Organizations, and Communities
    2.1.10(b)

    Assessment

    Select appropriate intervention strategies

    2.1.10(c)

    Intervention

    Implement prevention interventions that enhance client capacities

    Negotiate, mediate, and advocate for clients

    2.1.10(d)

    Evaluation

    Analyze, monitor, and evaluate interventions

    Source: Adapted from Council on Social Work Education (2012). Educational policy and accreditation standards. Washington, DC: Author. Retrieved from http://www.cswe.org/file.aspx?id=13780

    Chapter 11 examines the relation between values and evaluation, first by presenting a typology of evaluator valuing roles vis-à-vis stakeholders (Alkin, Vo, & Christie, 2012), and second, by discussing two major categories of evaluation models, namely values-distanced evaluation models and values-salient evaluation models (Speer, 2010). The chapter also discusses the role of theory in evaluation and policy analysis, distinguishing explanatory from justificatory or normative theories.

    Upon completion of the chapter, students will be able to (1) understand the logic behind making value-related judgments about the merits of performance-related program or policy evaluations, and (2) distinguish between and know the appropriate uses of explanatory and normative theories when evaluating program or policy outcomes.

    Upon successful completion of the skill building exercises in Chapter 11, students will have mastered the following CSWE Competencies and Practice Behaviors:

    Chapter 11 CSWE Core Competencies
    #Description
    2.1.2

    Apply Social Work Ethical Principles to Guide Professional Practice

    Recognize and manage personal values in a way that allows professional values to guide practice

    Make ethical decisions by applying standards of the NASW Code of Ethics

    Tolerate ambiguity in resolving ethical conflicts

    Apply strategies of ethical reasoning to arrive at principled decisions

    2.1.3

    Apply Critical Thinking to Inform and Communicate Professional Judgments

    Distinguish, appraise, and integrate multiple sources of knowledge, including research-based knowledge and practice wisdom

    Analyze models of assessment, prevention, intervention, and evaluation

    Demonstrate effective oral and written communication in working with individuals, families, groups, organizations, communities, and colleagues

    2.1.4

    Engage Diversity and Difference in Practice

    View themselves as learners and engage those with whom they work as informants

    2.1.5

    Advance Human Rights and Social and Economic Justice

    Understand the forms and mechanisms of oppression and discrimination

    2.1.7

    Apply Knowledge of Human Behavior and the Social Environment

    Utilize conceptual frameworks to guide the processes of assessment, intervention, and evaluation

    Critique and apply knowledge to understand person and environment

    2.1.8

    Engage in Policy Practice to Advance Social and Economic Well-Being and to Deliver Effective Social Work Services

    Analyze, formulate, and advocate for policies that advance social well-being

    2.1.9

    Respond to Contexts That Shape Practice

    Continuously discover, appraise, and attend to changing locales, populations, scientific and technological development, and emerging societal trends to provide relevant services

    2.1.10Engage, Assess, Intervene, and Evaluate With Individuals, Families, Groups, Organizations, and Communities
    2.1.10(b)

    Assessment

    Select appropriate intervention strategies

    2.1.10(c)

    Intervention

    Implement prevention interventions that enhance client capacities

    Negotiate, mediate, and advocate for clients

    2.1.10(d)

    Evaluation

    Analyze, monitor and evaluate interventions

    Source: Adapted from Council on Social Work Education (2012). Educational policy and accreditation standards. Washington, DC: Author. Retrieved from http://www.cswe.org/file.aspx?id=13780

    The Epilogue provides general guidelines and an overarching framework for program evaluation and policy analysis. It draws on many of the concepts, themes, tools, and techniques presented in prior chapters. Upon completion of the Epilogue, students will be able to (1) identify and apply general guidelines for conducting program and policy evaluations while retaining professional integrity and keeping social justice in mind, and (2) conduct program and policy evaluations at the appropriate level.

    Upon successful completion of the skill building exercises in the Epilogue, students will have mastered the following CSWE Competencies and Practice Behaviors:

    Epilogue CSWE Core Competencies
    #Description
    2.1.1

    Identify as a Professional Social Worker and Conduct Oneself Accordingly

    Advocate for client access to the services of a social worker

    Practice personal reflection and self-correction to ensure continual professional development

    Attend to professional roles and boundaries

    Demonstrate professional demeanor in behavior, appearance, and communication

    Engage in career-long learning

    Use supervision and consultation

    2.1.2

    Apply Social Work Ethical Principles to Guide Professional Practice

    Recognize and manage personal values in a way that allows professional values to guide practice

    Make ethical decisions by applying standards of the NASW Code of Ethics

    Tolerate ambiguity in resolving ethical conflicts

    Apply strategies of ethical reasoning to arrive at principled decisions

    2.1.3

    Apply Critical Thinking to Inform and Communicate Professional Judgments

    Distinguish, appraise, and integrate multiple sources of knowledge, including research-based knowledge and practice wisdom

    Analyze models of assessment, prevention, intervention, and evaluation

    Demonstrate effective oral and written communication in working with individuals, families, groups, organizations, communities, and colleagues

    2.1.4

    Engage Diversity and Difference in Practice

    Recognize the extent to which a culture's structures and values may oppress, marginalize, alienate, or create or enhance privilege and power

    Gain sufficient self-awareness to eliminate the influence of personal biases and values in working with diverse groups

    Recognize and communicate their understanding of the importance of difference in shaping life experiences

    2.1.5

    Advance Human Rights and Social and Economic Justice

    Understand the forms and mechanisms of oppression and discrimination

    Advocate for human rights and social and economic justice

    Engage in practices that advance social and economic justice

    2.1.6

    Engage in Research-Informed Practice and Practice-Informed Research

    Use practice experience to inform scientific inquiry

    Use research evidence to inform practice

    2.1.7

    Apply Knowledge of Human Behavior and the Social Environment

    Utilize conceptual frameworks to guide the processes of assessment, intervention, and evaluation

    Critique and apply knowledge to understand person and environment

    2.1.8

    Engage in Policy Practice to Advance Social and Economic Well-Being and to Deliver Effective Social Work Services

    Analyze, formulate, and advocate for policies that advance social well-being

    2.1.9

    Respond to Contexts That Shape Practice

    Continuously discover, appraise, and attend to changing locales, populations, scientific and technological development, and emerging societal trends to provide relevant services

    2.1.10Engage, Assess, Intervene, and Evaluate With Individuals, Families, Groups, Organizations, and Communities
    2.1.10(a)

    Engagement

    Substantively and affectively prepare for action with individuals, families, groups, organizations, and communities

    2.1.10(b)

    Assessment

    Collect, organize and interpret client data

    Assess client strengths and limitations

    2.1.10(c)

    Intervention

    Implement prevention interventions that enhance client capacities

    2.1.10(d)

    Evaluation

    Analyze, monitor and evaluate interventions

    Source: Adapted from Council on Social Work Education (2012). Educational policy and accreditation standards. Washington, DC: Author. Retrieved from http://www.cswe.org/file.aspx?id=13780

    Acknowledgments

    I wish to thank Michael Reisch, the editor of the social work series of which this book is a part, and Kassie Graves, Senior Acquisitions Editor, Human Services, Sage Publications, for providing me with the opportunity to write this book. Their continued enthusiastic encouragement and unwavering support throughout the prospectus and full manuscript review processes greatly eased what turned out to be a far more daunting undertaking than I had initially anticipated. I also wish to thank those individuals who reviewed drafts of the prospectus and full manuscript. The reviews were anonymous, at least to me, throughout the entire process until the very last, when several, having the option during the feedback process, identified who they were. Out of respect for all the reviewers and for the integrity of the review process that seems to work best when anonymity is preserved, I will refrain from disclosing anyone specifically. I benefited greatly from each reviewer's comments, incorporating as many as possible given the nature of the book and my particular “take” or viewpoint about the role of policy analysis in social work practice.

    The book was several years in the making, and during that time I was very fortunate to work with Dean Sheldon Gelman and his successor Carmine Hendricks, each of whom made it possible for me to devote the time necessary to complete it while carrying out teaching responsibilities, other research efforts, and administrative responsibilities as director of the PhD Program in Social Welfare (a position I happily relinquished effective May 1, 2013). In this last capacity, my competent, gregarious, and sunny-dispositioned secretary, Ann Persaud, made the day-to-day operations of the doctoral program run quite smoothly, enabling me to focus on writing for sustained periods of time; for this and much else, I am deeply grateful to her. I also benefited from students, some of whom provided feedback on the prospectus and others who commented on early drafts of the entire manuscript. My thanks go to: Fabian Egeruoh, Amanda Falk, Rodney Fuller, Hannah Junger, Rebecca Hanus, Yosef Kalinsky, Jaclyn Lieberman, and Adolpho Profumo, each of whom I hope someday—sooner rather than later—to welcome formally into the community of scholars upon completion of their degrees.

    Finally, and by no means least, I owe my most heartfelt thanks to my best friend and most loving wife, Mary, who enhances every aspect of my life and to whom I dedicate this book. Her own successful career in the fiercely competitive human relations arena of mergers and acquisitions worldwide is an inspiration to me. I am deeply appreciative of her efforts to ensure that I have the requisite “space,” without which I doubt I could write anything of merit.

    Dedication

    To My Loving Wife and Best Friend, Mary

    In Memory

    Emily and Salvatore Caputo, My Parents

    Philip Caputo, My Uncle and Social Policy Sparring Partner

    Arthur Mann, Historian

  • Epilogue: A Holistic Framework for Policy Analysis

    The Epilogue provides some general guidelines and an overarching framework for program evaluation and policy analysis. It draws on many of the concepts, themes, tools, and techniques presented throughout this volume. Upon completion of the epilogue, students will be able to (1) identify and apply general guidelines for conducting program and policy evaluations while retaining professional integrity and keeping social justice in mind, and (2) conduct program and policy evaluations at the appropriate level.

    Upon successful completion of the skill building exercises, students will have mastered the following Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) Competencies and Practice Behaviors:

    Epilogue CSWE Core Competencies
    #Description
    2.1.1

    Identify as a Professional Social Worker and Conduct Oneself Accordingly

    Advocate for client access to the services of a social worker

    Practice personal reflection and self-correction to ensure continual professional development

    Attend to professional roles and boundaries

    Demonstrate professional demeanor in behavior, appearance, and communication

    Engage in career-long learning

    Use supervision and consultation

    2.1.2

    Apply Social Work Ethical Principles to Guide Professional Practice

    Recognize and manage personal values in a way that allows professional values to guide practice

    Make ethical decisions by applying standards of the NASW Code of Ethics

    Tolerate ambiguity in resolving ethical conflicts

    Apply strategies of ethical reasoning to arrive at principled decisions

    2.1.3

    Apply Critical Thinking to Inform and Communicate Professional Judgments

    Distinguish, appraise, and integrate multiple sources of knowledge, including research-based knowledge and practice wisdom

    Analyze models of assessment, prevention, intervention, and evaluation

    Demonstrate effective oral and written communication in working with individuals, families, groups, organizations, communities, and colleagues

    2.1.4

    Engage Diversity and Difference in Practice

    Recognize the extent to which a culture's structures and values may oppress, marginalize, alienate, or create or enhance privilege and power

    Gain sufficient self-awareness to eliminate the influence of personal biases and values in working with diverse groups

    Recognize and communicate their understanding of the importance of difference in shaping life experiences

    2.1.5

    Advance Human Rights and Social and Economic Justice

    Understand the forms and mechanisms of oppression and discrimination

    Advocate for human rights and social and economic justice

    Engage in practices that advance social and economic justice

    2.1.6

    Engage in Research-Informed Practice and Practice-Informed Research

    Use practice experience to inform scientific inquiry

    Use research evidence to inform practice

    2.1.7

    Apply Knowledge of Human Behavior and the Social Environment

    Utilize conceptual frameworks to guide the processes of assessment, intervention, and evaluation

    Critique and apply knowledge to understand person and environment

    2.1.8

    Engage in Policy Practice to Advance Social and Economic Well-Being and to Deliver Effective Social Work Services

    Analyze, formulate, and advocate for policies that advance social well-being

    2.1.9

    Respond to Contexts That Shape Practice

    Continuously discover, appraise, and attend to changing locales, populations, scientific and technological development, and emerging societal trends to provide relevant services

    2.1.10Engage, Assess, Intervene, and Evaluate With Individuals, Families, Groups, Organizations, and Communities
    2.1.10(a)

    Engagement

    Substantively and affectively prepare for action with individuals, families, groups, organizations, and communities

    2.1.10(b)

    Assessment

    Collect, organize, and interpret client data

    Assess client strengths and limitations

    2.1.10(c)

    Intervention

    Implement prevention interventions that enhance client capacities

    2.1.10(d)

    Evaluation

    Analyze, monitor, and evaluate interventions

    Source: Adapted from Council on Social Work Education (2012). Educational policy and accreditation standards. Washington, DC: Author. Retrieved from http://www.cswe.org/file.aspx?id=13780

    General Principles, Guidelines, and Standards of Evaluation Practice

    Evaluators who rely on theories, whether of the social scientific, normative, or “program-theory” variety, when conducting evaluations should keep in mind a primary non-variant goal of evaluation—namely, the evaluator's obligation to assess merit or worth in a professionally objective way. This essential value-determination function should not be subordinated under the banner of empowerment evaluation or emancipation theory to other activities that are not necessarily involved in evaluation work, such as providing evaluation training to clients, helping them institutionalize systematic evaluation, and informing public relations reports (Stufflebeam, 1994). Instead, when doing evaluation work, social workers, program evaluators, and other professionals would be well advised to uphold basic principles and standards of evaluation practice, such as those delineated in Table Ep.1.

    Table Ep.1 Basic Principles and Standards of Evaluation
    Basic PrinciplesStandards/Values
    UtilityGround evaluation in stakeholder interests and articulated values—that is, they should be credible, informative, timely, and influential
    ProprietyEvaluations should be ethical and fair to affected parties, including service providers and clients
    FeasibilityEvaluation procedures and level of effort are appropriate, affordable, politically viable, and reasonably easy to implement
    AccuracyEvaluations should reveal and convey technically adequate information and justified inferences about the features of the program or policy that determine its merit or worth

    Source: Stufflebeam, D.L. (1994). Empowerment evaluation, objectivist evaluation, and evaluation standards: Where the future of evaluation should not go and where it needs to go. Evaluation Practice, 15, 322–323.

    In addition to satisfying basic principles and standards of utility, propriety, feasibility, and accuracy, Stufflebeam (1994) provides other general guidelines for conducting evaluations that retain professional (impartial) integrity while, for our purposes and by extension, keeping in mind the social work commitment to social justice. These general guidelines are enumerated and summarized in Table Ep.2.

    Table Ep.2 General Guidelines for Evaluations
    • Examine programs for their service to citizens of a democratic society and to effects on non-citizens, whether legal or illegal
    • Assess programs and policies for their merit (intrinsic value, e.g., appropriateness and adequacy of benefits or services) and worth (extrinsic value, e.g., meeting clients' needs)
    • Assess the extent administrators and staff are professionally accountable—that is, publicly and creditably responsible in fulfilling their professional responsibilities or duties
    • Provide direction for policy or program improvement based in part of ongoing assessment of performance and on relevant up-to-date studies and state of the art theoretical developments—that is, by conducting formative and summative evaluations
    • Conduct ongoing or prospective assessments of need, opportunities, and problems within a service area to help ensure consistency with institutional mission or goals and to reassess priorities accordingly
    • Conduct retrospective evaluations linking changes in clients' needs to program or policy effects
    • Identify and assess the merit and worth of alternative policies and programs
    • Ground evaluation in ongoing communications among stakeholders about the key questions, criteria, findings, and implications of evaluation to promote their acceptance, use, and impact, making sure to avoid concealing later findings that may show the policy or program in less than a desirable light
    • Use the multiple perspectives of stakeholders, multiple outcome measures, and both quantitative and qualitative methods for data collection and analysis

    Source: Adapted from Stufflebeam, D.L. (1994). Empowerment evaluation, objectivist evaluation, and evaluation standards: Where the future of evaluation should not go and where it needs to go. Evaluation Practice, 15, 330–333.

    An Overarching Framework for Program Evaluation and Policy Analysis

    For purposes here, policy analysts are well advised to maintain an analytical distinction between facts and values when their primary role is to conduct an analysis rather than advocating for a particular aim or goal such as social justice. Informed by practical logic, policy analysts can integrate facts and values when evaluating social policies and programs. Drawing on Fischer (1980), Caputo (1989) provides a conceptual framework that integrates facts and values in evaluation while maintaining a distinction between them. The framework, which encapsulates in summary form many of the issues discussed throughout the book, delineates four phases containing both normative and empirical components. Table Ep.3 illustrates the framework.

    Table Ep.3 Framework of Policy Evaluation Components
    ProbeInferenceReasonsCriticism
    Technical Verification of Policy Objectives
    Policy Objectives
    Empirical Consequences
    Unanticipated Effects
    Alternative Means
    Validation of Policy Goals
    Relevance
    Situational Context
    Multiple Goals
    Precedence
    Vindication of Policy Choices
    System Consequences
    Equity
    Ideological Conflicts
    Rational Choice
    Alternative Social Orders

    Source: Adapted from Fischer, F. (1980). Politics, values, and public policy. Boulder, CO: Westview Press, p. 206.

    The first two phases or components, verification and validation, involve decision making based on principles endemic to the value systems that govern the particular decision-making process in question (Caputo, 1989). In verification, evaluation focuses on the empirical demonstration of whether the program or policy being evaluated fulfills the requirements of the norms introduced by decision makers and other stakeholders. The program evaluator or policy analyst examines program or policy objectives, likely or actual empirical consequences of the policy or program, unanticipated effects, and alternative means. In validation, evaluation asks whether the goal itself is compatible with the basic value systems that provide competing criteria in the judgment process. Program evaluators or policy analysts assess questions of relevance, examine the situational context, delineate multiple goals, and account for precedence. The vindication and rational choice components of the framework entail choosing value systems by making decisions on principle. In vindication, evaluation seeks to determine whether the value system is instrumental or contributive to the adopted way of life or culture. Program evaluators and policy analysts examine and assess system consequences, equity, and ideological conflicts. In rational choice, program evaluators and policy analysts examine alternative ways of life and seek to show the extent to which a particular choice about a way of life is governed by rational processes in free and open deliberation. Each component is guided by different methodologies, which are highlighted in Table Ep.4.

    Table Ep.4 The Levels of Evaluation as Social Science Methodology

    As can be seen in Table Ep.4, verification and vindication rely on empirical modes of inquiry, while validation and rational choice use more interpretive modes of inference. Ideally, there would be sufficient time and resources to employ all four phases to assess the merit or worth of a policy or program, thereby encouraging more systematic and thorough integration of empirical inquiry and normative discourse (Caputo, 1989). Verification and validation would do so within a given set of acceptable, identifiable, and commonly held values, and each of these two phases of evaluation proceed to justify judgments based on these normative criteria. Vindication and rational choice occur when there are no more acceptable normative criteria within the set of values commonly held to which an appeal can be made.

    Much of the program and policy evaluation literature falls into the verification and to a lesser although increasingly more extensive extent, given the greater acceptance of qualitative approaches to social inquiry, the validation categories. Many MDRC studies of welfare-to-work and educational training programs, several of which were noted above, are examples of these approaches. As Caputo (1989) has noted, Wilson (1987) and Callahan (1987), respectively, are examples of the vindication and rational choice phases of evaluation. In The Truly Disadvantaged and in much subsequent work (e.g., Wilson, 2009, 2011; see Caputo & Deprez, 2012, for a summary), Wilson relies on a massive amount of data to challenge liberal (e.g., Duncan, 1984) and conservative (Mead, 1986; Murray, 1984) orthodoxy in analyzing inner-city problems (verification and validation phases), and to argue for moving beyond primary reliance on race-specific policies to address social conditions to policies that in part address broader structural problems of social organization and in part redress past injustices, such as discrimination. When discussing what accounts for “the underclass” in urban America, Wilson (1987) challenged “decisions of principle”—that is, those guides for subsequent decision making and political action. Whereas the more conservative analysts such as Murray (1984) and Mead (1986), who provided much intellectual and ideological fodder that shaped the 1996 legislation reforming welfare (Caputo, 2011), based their policy recommendations on individualistic values and behaviors, Wilson focuses on macro-historical and structural factors associated with a changing economy, thereby challenging the extent to which a value system based on individual effort and merit is instrumental or contributes to the plight of inner-city, low-income residents.

    Despite efforts to provide an alternative set of criteria to judge the merits of government action, Wilson nonetheless remains well within the rather elastic vision of American capitalism (Caputo, 1989). Although a self-proclaimed Social Democrat, Wilson never calls for major shifts in the capitalistic public-private partnership and thereby bypasses the rational choice phase of the framework, that phase that calls for a critical examination of alternative ways of life. This is not to say that Wilson eschews a rational approach to economic development and social reform. Quite the contrary: he is a solid advocate for activist government in the economy and general welfare of the country, particularly on behalf of economically vulnerable groups. He relies on empirical analysis to assess the merits of existing programs and policies (verification), then challenges them on the basis of their consequences for society in general and low-income urban families and individuals in particular (validation). Wilson goes on to challenge the criteria by which existing programs are assumed to benefit the citizenry, and he offers a range of alternative policies based more on active government in the economy and society rather than on the more restrictive role of government as primary regulator or umpire of the economy and welfare (vindication). On the whole, however, capitalism as the engine of the economy remains for Wilson normatively intact.

    In a more recent work, political scientist, self-identified libertarian, and American Enterprise Institute resident scholar Murray (2006, 2012), relying on national level data, also challenged the criteria by which existing welfare state programs are assumed to benefit the citizenry (vindication). As an alternative to the welfare state, which Murray proposed to dismantle, he offered a basic income plan to eliminate poverty. He called on the U.S. government to provide individuals 21 years of age and older an intermittently adjusted amount of $10,000 a year, of which $3,000 would go to health care coverage. Unlike Wilson, Murray preferred less federal level government involvement in social welfare provisioning beyond a guaranteed unconditional annual cash nexus. Murray's basic income plan found no political traction, of which he was aware, admitting, “Today's politicians would not build it” (2006, p. xv). Despite a flurry of reviews in popular outlets such as The New Republic (Klein, 2006; Noah, 2012), the National Review (Ponnure, 2006), the University of Pittsburgh Law Review (Delgado, 2007), and The New York Times (Douthat, 2012), Murray's challenge was largely ignored (Caputo, 2012). For purposes, here, however, the works of Wilson and Murray explicitly integrate normative concerns in their empirical assessments of social welfare provisioning policies.

    Unlike Wilson and Murray, both of whom eschewed the rational choice phase (of the framework in Table Ep.4), Callahan (1987) argues primarily from within it, and to a lesser extent within the vindication component (Caputo, 1989). He develops a rationale for limiting health resources to the elderly, given that those aged 65 years and older account for increasing shares of health care expenditures: from about 31 percent in 1984 to nearly half (about 43 percent) by 2002 (Stanton & Rutherford, 2006); and projected increases in the financial burden for those 65 years age and over from the median percentage of household income spent on health care costs rising from 10 percent in 2010 to 19 percent by 2040, and the percentage of those individuals spending more than 20 percent of their income on health care going from 18 percent in 2010 to 45 percent in 2040 (Johnson & Mommaerts, 2010). About one-quarter of Medicare expenditures are for care of beneficiaries in the last year of their life and one-tenth for care in the last 30 days, even though only about 5 percent of Medicare recipients die in any given year (McKeown, 2011).

    Callahan (1987) traces changing conceptions of medicine, health, and family life, and then challenges contemporary criteria of what constitutes the good life, at least for aging persons. Technological advances that have transformed the nature of medicine from caring to curing have also moved the idea of health from a nebulous hope to a fundamental and social requirement: what can be done medically ought to be done and what ought to be done ought to be available to all, and what ought to be available to all becomes the moral responsibility of all. Advances in biomedical technologies, Callahan argues, alter perceptions about the capacity to control life—in effect strengthening the belief that medical destiny is in one's hands and posing new moral and ethical dilemmas that were inconceivable prior to such advances. Think, for example, about how ultrasound scanning and DNA tests expand parents' knowledge about the health of a fetus and the range of conditions under which they may deliberate about the option of abortion at varying stages of pregnancy, contingent upon test results (for a more extended discussion of this and related issues about how technology mediates morally related individual and collective or policy decision making see Verbeek, 2011).

    Callahan (1987) asks if the aforementioned trends are prudent, sensible, or fair. Should they be allowed to continue unabated? Callahan thinks not, and he advises medicine to give up its relentless drive to extend the life of the aged and to attend instead to the relief of their suffering and an improvement in their physical and mental quality of life. This call for a restructuring of the health care research and financing policies, from extending life to improving its quality, occurs primarily within the rational choice component of the framework in Table Ep.4. Callahan offers an alternative resource allocation model to guide decisions about using life-extending technologies on the elderly. His model concomitantly limits macro- and micro-environmental medical options for the elderly. At the macro level, public policy would emphasize preventive rather than acute or chronic treatment; provision of equitable security or receipt of adequate income to ensure that impoverishment would not occur; priorities for care, especially primary care; fully subsidized home care; and institutional programs for the elderly; and perhaps most controversial, an end to the blind pursuit of technological advances aimed at the indefinite extending of life without regard to quality of life. At the institutional or micro-environmental level, Callahan proposes criteria for terminating those treatments that are unable to relieve pain and suffering when a patient has lived a “full life span,” those that create burdens such as pain, loss of function, and disfigurement, as patients on renal dialysis after surgery and those unable to restore or maintain their quality of life, or a sense of personhood that can be sustained. What constitutes “full life span” and “sustained personhood” would be subjects of deliberation, the former reached in part when life's possibilities have been achieved and after which death may be understood as a sad, but nonetheless acceptable event, and the latter including at least the capacity to reason, to have emotions, and to enter into relations with others.

    Government has a definite but limited role in Callihan's scheme. Government has a duty to help people live out a natural life span but not actively help extend life medically beyond that point. Government is obliged to develop, employ, and pay only for that kind and degree of life-extending technology necessary for medicine to achieve and serve the end of a natural life span. Finally, beyond the point of a natural life span, government should provide only the means necessary for the relief of suffering, not life-extending technology. In Callahan's scheme, age replaces need as a principle for the allocation of resources. Combined with an ideal of old age that focuses on its quality rather than its indefinite extension, age can be understood at the level of common sense or practical reason and can be made relatively clear and subject to policy analysis (Caputo, 1989).

    Appendix A: Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) Core Competencies

    #DescriptionIn Chapters
    2.1.1Identify as a Professional Social Worker and Conduct Oneself Accordingly
    Advocate for client access to the services of a social workerEpilogue
    Practice personal reflection and self-correction to ensure continual professional development3, Epilogue
    Attend to professional roles and boundaries1, 3, Epilogue
    Demonstrate professional demeanor in behavior, appearance, and communication
    Engage in career-long learningEpilogue
    Use supervision and consultationEpilogue
    2.1.2Apply Social Work Ethical Principles to Guide Professional Practice
    Recognize and manage personal values in a way that allows professional values to guide practice5, 11, Epilogue
    Make ethical decisions by applying standards of the National Association of Social Work (NASW) Code of Ethics3, 4, 5, 11, Epilogue
    Tolerate ambiguity in resolving ethical conflicts3, 4, 5, 9, 11, Epilogue
    Apply strategies of ethical reasoning to arrive at principled decisions4, 9, 11, Epilogue
    2.1.3Apply Critical Thinking to Inform and Communicate Professional Judgments
    Distinguish, appraise, and integrate multiple sources of knowledge, including research-based knowledge and practice wisdom6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, Epilogue
    Analyze models of assessment, prevention, intervention, and evaluation6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, Epilogue
    Demonstrate effective oral and written communication in working with individuals, families, groups, organizations, communities, and colleagues1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, Epilogue
    2.1.4Engage Diversity and Difference in Practice
    Recognize the extent to which a culture's structures and values may oppress, marginalize, alienate, or create or enhance privilege and power6, 8, Epilogue
    Gain sufficient self-awareness to eliminate the influence of personal biases and values in working with diverse groupsEpilogue
    Recognize and communicate their understanding of the importance of difference in shaping life experiencesEpilogue
    View themselves as learners and engage those with whom they work as informants9, 11
    2.1.5Advance Human Rights and Social and Economic Justice
    Understand the forms and mechanisms of oppression and discrimination4, 6, 8, 9, 11, Epilogue
    Advocate for human rights and social and economic justiceEpilogue
    Engage in practices that advance social and economic justiceEpilogue
    2.1.6Engage in Research-Informed Practice and Practice-Informed Research
    Use practice experience to inform scientific inquiryEpilogue
    Use research evidence to inform practice6, 7, Epilogue
    2.1.7Apply Knowledge of Human Behavior and the Social Environment
    Utilize conceptual frameworks to guide the processes of assessment, intervention, and evaluation2, 4, 5, 6,7, 8, 9, 10, 11, Epilogue
    Critique and apply knowledge to understand person and environment2, 4, 5, 6,7, 8, 9, 10, 11, Epilogue
    2.1.8Engage in Policy Practice to Advance Social and Economic Well-Being and to Deliver Effective Social Work Services
    Analyze, formulate, and advocate for policies that advance social well-being4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 11, Epilogue
    Collaborate with colleagues and clients for effective policy action2
    2.1.9Respond to Contexts That Shape Practice
    Continuously discover, appraise, and attend to changing locales, populations, scientific and technological development, and emerging societal trends to provide relevant services1, 4, 5, 8, 9, 10, 11, Epilogue
    Provide leadership in promoting sustainable changes in service delivery and practice to improve the quality of social services1
    2.1.10Engage, Assess, Intervene, and Evaluate With Individuals, Families, Groups, Organizations, and Communities
    2.1.10(a)Engagement
    Substantively and affectively prepare for action with individuals, families, groups, organizations, and communitiesEpilogue
    Use empathy and other interpersonal skills
    Develop a mutually agreed-on focus of work and desired outcomes
    2.1.10(b)Assessment
    Collect, organize, and interpret client dataEpilogue
    Assess client strengths and limitationsEpilogue
    Develop mutually agreed-on intervention goals and objectives
    Select appropriate intervention strategies10, 11
    2.1.10(c)Intervention
    Initiate actions to achieve organizational goals
    Implement prevention interventions that enhance client capacities10, 11, Epilogue
    Help clients resolve problems
    Negotiate, mediate, and advocate for clients10, 11
    Facilitate transitions and endings
    2.1.10(d)Evaluation
    Analyze, monitor, and evaluate interventions10, 11, Epilogue

    Source: Adapted from Council on Social Work Education (2012). Educational policy and accreditation standards. Washington, DC: Author. Retrieved from http://www.cswe.org/file.aspx?id=13780

    Appendix B: Historical Overview of Policy Analysis and Policy Studies

    Policy analysts may be found in many different settings and, by training, possess conceptual skills and methodological tools, along with varied levels and types of technical proficiency and expertise. Organizational settings where policy analysts work include the executive and legislative branches of the federal and state governments, local level executive agencies, think tanks and policy-research organizations (of which, according to NIRA's World Directory of Think Tanks [http://www.nira.or.jp/past/ice/nwdtt/2005/index.html], there are about one hundred in the United States), and profit-seeking firms in industries affected by government action. In addition, faculty at many universities and colleges with departments or programs offering advanced degrees from professional schools such as business, government, law, medicine, nursing, public administration, public policy, and social work, and from academic disciplines such as economics, international studies, political science, sociology, and perhaps to a lesser extent philosophy also incorporate policy analysis as part of their respective research agendas (Ascher, 1986; Medvetz, 2012, 2007; Radin, 1997; Watson, 1983; Weimer & Vining, 2011).

    This appendix provides a historical overview of the professionalization of the social sciences and of social work and the roles they play in the formation of policy analysts/experts. It discusses the relation between advocates' and reformers' efforts to speak authoritatively about the causes and remedies of social problems; the ascendency of universities to provide the institutional settings for carrying out policy analysis that had the paradoxical effect of legitimating the authority of social science faculty while concomitantly narrowing their focus, as faculty became increasingly specialized experts; and the emergence and proliferation of think tanks, those hybrid organizations that traverse the social worlds of politics, academics, business, and journalism to address social problems and influence policy debates (Medvetz, 2007).

    Upon completion of Appendix B, students will have learned that (1) policy analysis has a formidable history with roots in the reform efforts of the eighteenth century, and (2) social work is only one among several disciplines and professions seeking to assess and influence social welfare policy. Upon successful completion of the skill building exercises of Appendix B, students will have mastered the following Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) Core Competencies and Practice Behaviors:

    Appendix B CSWE Core Competencies
    #Description
    2.1.1

    Identify as a Professional Social Worker and Conduct Oneself Accordingly

    Attend to professional roles and boundaries

    2.1.3

    Apply Critical Thinking to Inform and Communicate Professional Judgments

    Demonstrate effective oral and written communication in working with individuals, families, groups, organizations, communities, and colleagues

    2.1.7

    Apply Knowledge of Human Behavior and the Social Environment

    Critique and apply knowledge to understand person and environment

    2.1.9

    Respond to Contexts That Shape Practice

    Continuously discover, appraise, and attend to changing locales, populations, scientific and technological development, and emerging societal trends to provide relevant services

    Provide leadership in promoting sustainable changes in service delivery and practice to improve the quality of social services

    Source: Adapted from Council on Social Work Education (2012). Educational policy and accreditation standards. Washington, DC: Author. Retrieved from http://www.cswe.org/file.aspx?id=13780

    Historical Roots

    The contemporary configuration of policy analysis in the United States has its roots in social reform efforts dating back to the end of the Civil War with the formation of the American Social Science Association (ASSA) in 1865, the professionalization of the social sciences (particularly the academic disciplines of economics, political science, and sociology) in the latter part of the nineteenth century and the Progressive Era in the twentieth century, and both World Wars, which increased the demand, among other things, for human science experts working in government agencies and in private foundations to address social problems (Furner, 2011; Smith, 1994). In addition, since World War II the contemporary configuration of policy analysis has been shaped by the proliferation of issue-oriented think tanks and foundations that seek to influence economic and social public policies at all levels of government, by financially supporting policy-related research of scholars whose work supports their views, by promoting the publication of related books, policy briefs, and position papers targeting policymakers, and by nurturing a cadre of policy analysts/experts to serve as staff to and on committees of government officials (Feinberg, 2007; Fischer, 1991; Stahl, 2008; Stefancic & Delgado, 1996; Tevelow, 2005).

    The earlier social reform efforts fused natural law moralism with scientific methodology, especially the empirical inductive approach espoused by Francis Bacon (1620/2012; Snyder, 2011) and advanced by natural and social philosophers on both sides of the Atlantic. These included Frank B. Sanborn, who became secretary to the first State Board of Charities in 1863 and an organizer of the first “Conference of Boards of Public Charities,” which had initially met in New York in 1874 as a section of the American Social Science Association (ASSA) (Haskell, 2000; Mann, 1954; Sanborn & Ayers, 1931), and Richard Jones in England (Snyder, 2011). Natural law moralism entailed a set of unverifiable, universally binding and knowable precepts of practical reason that would serve as ethical guides to human action, helping to determine what constitutes right reason about what one ought to do in conformity with nature. Some philosophical and religious traditions regard this as a reflection of a priori divine law, while others accept nature as a limit and its own precondition as self-evident practical truths (Lee, 1928; McAniff, 1953; George, 1999; O'Scannlain, 2011). Bacon's method demanded three steps in problem solving—namely, collection, classification, and interpretation of facts—and it required no consciously articulated theory of causation and no theoretical questions to guide research, not even hypotheses (Furner, 2011).

    Not coincidentally, social work, which had strong roots in social reform, particularly among the settlement house workers, also developed during this period (Bricker-Jenkins & Joseph, 2008). As professionally emergent social workers and social scientists attempted to ground their efforts in less moralistic and more objective ways of thinking and practices (Bryson, 1932; Franklin, 1986), they became increasingly ensconced in university settings, distanced themselves from reform efforts and applied work, and narrowed their advocacy to areas within their expertise (Bannister, 1987). At the time, however, there was no contradiction between Bacon's approach and social reformers' intentions; this made it convenient for the largely upper class amateurs or generalists who attended meetings of the Conference of Boards of Public Charities and filled the ranks of the ASSA. As Daniels (1963) noted, for Bacon, knowledge was power and application of his then revolutionary inductive science provided hope for human progress, an attitude pervasive among the philanthropists, bureaucrats, reformers, and educators who joined the ASSA and sought to make a social revolution by developing a social science (Furner, 2011).

    The ASSA served as the institutional focal point to establish and defend authority in an increasingly interdependent world, which presented formidable challenges to commonsense thinking about causality and human behavior among a discordant hodgepodge of gentry-class practitioners as they organized into professions, including the eclectic mix of law, medicine, divinity, history, education, business, arts, and letters, under the rubric of “social science.” Social science, which was to emerge gradually from the cocoon of moral philosophy (Bryson, 1932), referred to the whole realm of problematic relationships in human affairs, descriptions and explanations of which were becoming less familiar to common sense and more alien to common knowledge as the United States increasingly industrialized and urbanized between the Civil War and World War I. ASSA's departmental structure—that is, its Departments of Education, Health, Finance, and Jurisprudence—was designed to accommodate the classic professions in an enterprise devoted as much to practical reform as to social investigation (Haskell, 2000; Ross, 1991). Many of these gentry-class practitioners clung to the fiction that piling up enough data would lead to the discovery of self-evident truths, which in turn would show people how they should live (Furner, 2011). Although its model of social inquiry was eclipsed but not annihilated by university-based disciplines, the ASSA was instrumental in legitimating the authoritative pronouncements of social problems and remedies by increasingly specialized social science professionals, a process consistent with the development of the professionalization of science in the United States that had begun in the first half of the eighteenth century (Daniels, 1967).

    Seeking to create a more “scientific” philanthropy as a corrective to indiscriminate almsgiving to poor and destitute individuals and to introduce more objective attitudes to the study of social welfare (Bremner, 1956; Franklin, 1986; Gettelman 1969/1970), forerunners of professional social work had organized the National Conference of Charities and Correction (NCCC) and its predecessors in conjunction with the ASSA—the organizations held annual meetings together from 1874 to 1878. In its efforts to transcend a class-based or self-interest basis of authority and to create a more impartial basis, the ASSA sowed the seeds of its own demise by 1909. It inadvertently spawned the American Historical Association (AHA) in 1884, from which the American Economic Association (AEA) splintered off in 1885, and the American Political Science Association (APSA) in 1904. The American Sociology Society (ASS) separated from the American Economic Association in 1905. Speaking at the National Conference of Charities and Correction in 1915, educator Abraham Flexner had raised doubts about the professional standing of social work, in part due to its lack of discipline-specific knowledge. Impersonal neutrality and discipline-specific knowledge became hallmarks of professional development, as evidenced by the development of university-based academic disciplines, professional organizations, and credentialing bodies. Reflecting these developments, the National Social Workers Exchange (later the American Association of Social Workers) was organized in 1917, the same year Mary Richmond's Social Diagnosis, a basic methodological text for social work education, was published.

    As atheoretical and reformist as it was, the ASSA had nonetheless become too abstract for the National Conference of Charities and Correction, which began meeting separately in 1879. The splintering of the American Historical Association, begun in 1894, signified the perceived inadequacy of ASSA as a viable organizational entity for the pursuit of social inquiry. This inadequacy was also exemplified by the failed attempt of ASSA to become a part of Johns Hopkins University, an attempt initiated in 1878 when Johns Hopkins was only two years old (Haskell, 2000; Lengermann & Niebrugge, 2007). Universities were deemed more viable institutions within which to carry out more authoritative and legitimate social inquiry by scholars and professionals, including social workers. These academics and professionals could devote themselves full time to their investigations and thereby be better equipped to replace the “social science amateurs,” reflecting ASSA's open membership, and to denounce charlatans and quacks. Cornell University's co-founder and first president, Andrew Dickson White (1896), had made this clear when writing about the rationale for Cornell's founding in 1865 (Goode, 1960). Edward L. Youmans (1874), editor of Popular Science Monthly and proponent of Herbert Spencer's social evolutionary theory, considered the ASSA “an organization for public action,” whose members were “hot with the impulses of philanthropy … [and] full of projects of social relief, amelioration, and improvement,” but “of pure investigation, of the strict and passionless study of society from a scientific point of view, we hear very little” (p. 368). In Youmans's estimation, ASSA meetings advanced social science about as much as political conventions. A year later Youmans (1875), for whom the development of social science meant uncovering “the natural laws of the social state” (p. 366), accused the ASSA of deceiving the public. In short, by having “social science” in its name, ASSA—whose membership advanced the “heterogeneous and discordant opinions of unscientific men” (p. 367)—merely cloaked reformist schemes in the dignity of science.

    At issue in the failure of ASSA to join Johns Hopkins University, in part, was the distinction between agitation and investigation. In the late nineteenth century, agitation and advocacy were correlated with a relativistic view of human affairs that precluded “sound opinion,” the formation of which required support of organized communities of inquiry. Implicit in organized communities of competence was a consensus about the criteria of competence. Universities as they were developing during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries were deemed the place where members of such communities viewed even their bitterest rivals inside the community as fundamentally competent. They thereby provided an institutional framework better suited to investigate and interpret facts among competent peers, even if rivals. Since practical reform was inherently controversial, precluding the formation of consensual communities about competency, those dedicated to social reform were deemed less fit if not unfit for professionalization. The true person of science, admonished astronomer and mathematician turned political economist Simon Newcomb (1886b) in the opening address of the International Congress of Arts and Science, Universal Exposition in St. Louis in 1904, “has no such expression in his vocabulary as ‘useful knowledge’” (Newcomb, 1904, p. 3).

    By 1909 when ASSA ceased, the inquiry and reform mission had become sufficiently frayed, with universities providing the institutional framework within which to organize professional communities of competent inquirers. The fraying was helped by several academic freedom cases that were embarrassing to universities during the 1890s, including the economist Edward Bemis at the University of Chicago and political economist Edward Ross at Stanford University, resulting in faculty dismissals (Furner, 2011; Mohr, 1970). Bemis incorporated socializing essential public services into his economic philosophy and was forced to resign after launching a crusade for municipal control of Chicago's gas supply. A proponent of free silver and supporter of William Jennings Bryan for president, Ross openly attacked continued importation of “Oriental” labor into the United States and proposed that public ownership of municipal utilities was the wave of the future, two policy-related positions that enraged Mrs. Jane Lathrop Stanford, the sole trustee of the university, who demanded and eventually succeeded in getting Ross dismissed.

    The American Social Science Association's departments of education, health, social economics, finance, and jurisprudence constituted operational fields of action for the diagnosis and cure of society's ills, whereas disciplinary boundaries that professional associations such as the American Historical Association and the American Economic Association sought to promote as their memberships increasingly became university based focused less on social problems per se. Instead, they served to allocate the materials of scholarship by assigning to each group of specialists a field of factual data, developing knowledge bases and methodological tools of their respective disciplinary trades. These specialists enjoyed first rights of exploring such data—a division of labor among investigators, not agitators (Cravens, 1971; Dunbar, 1891; Haskell, 2000).

    Twentieth Century: First Half—The Quest for Objectivity

    It is important to keep in mind that this transition took decades, well into the twentieth century, and was never totally complete. On the eve of the Progressive Era in the early twentieth century, American Economic Association (AEA) membership was open to anyone willing to pay dues, and its chief organizer, Richard T. Ely, retained ASSA's commitment to social reforms by crusading against laissez-faire economics. This was to the dismay of Newcomb (1886a, 1894) and others (e.g., see Farnam, 1886), who questioned his science, pro-labor bias, and by extension his professionalism, setting off a debate among political economists of all stripes (Furner, 2011, pp. 81–106; also see Science, 7 and 8, 1886 for lively exchanges about related issues between Ely and Newcomb and other major participants, a “discussion” considered the high point of conflict, while disclosing areas of compromise, between what was at the time deemed the old [classic laissez-faire] and new [morally infused interventionists] schools of economics vying for authoritative control of the emerging profession). Ely nonetheless stressed the need to encourage research, publish monographs, and facilitate communication among members.

    AEA, other offshoots of ASSA, and forums such as the National Conference of Charities and Correction (NCCC) served as the crucible or laboratories for the development of the cadre of experts who could air their views about matters of policy. Rather than concerning themselves exclusively with theoretical or discipline-bound questions, AEA and other splinter groups afforded their members a viable forum in which to air their views about policy. They created committees to examine such contemporary questions about trade and tariff policies and labor conditions, and their members also served as the first group of policy experts serving state and local governments, as well as increasingly the federal government. Ely, for example, not only was a major figure in establishing AEA but also, while assistant professor at Johns Hopkins University, served on the Maryland and Baltimore tax commissions (Smith, 1991). Likewise, in its formative years prior to World War II, American sociology and social work had a fair share of practically minded social reformers, including the likes of Jane Addams, Charles Ellwood, Graham Taylor, Mary Richmond, Robert Woods, Paul V. Kellogg, and Robert MacIver (Mills, 1943; Turner, 2007).

    ASSA's organizational splintering was nonetheless important given the dominance of positivism in the social sciences and the quest for objectivity through the first half of the twentieth century (Bannister, 1987; Manicas, 1987), as well as the influx of academics into government agencies and departments during World War I and World War II (Smith, 1991). In one respect, whether social science practitioners were academics or not, the tension between knowledge and reform remained and universities invariably sought to jettison faculty who were deemed “politically incorrect” at the time (e.g., see Gruber, 1972). Academic social scientists, however, were able to wrap their reform intentions in the mantle of professional prerogative, shielding them from consequences of advocacy that otherwise would expose them to severe risk. Columbia University's John Bates Clark (1897), who articulated the role of political scientists as properly trained to look beneath the surface of industrial society and inform the public of their findings, was an example of such. As emerging professionals in the early decades of twentieth century America, social scientists increasingly tempered both the form and substance of their advocacy, and the tension between reform and knowledge reappeared as a conflict between advocacy and objectivity (Furner, 2011).

    Prior to World War I, objectivity in what was then the emerging professionalization of the social sciences was thought about in several ways: first, as deriving from the nature of the subject matter, as in Ward's notion that “pure” sociology dealt exclusively with the consequences of non-purposive human behavior; second, as the methods used by trained observers, as in Giddings's increased emphasis on statistics; and finally, as the attitude of the unbiased observer, the most common use of the term (Bannister, 1987). The formation of professional associations such as the American Economic Association (AEA), the American Political Science Association (APSA), and the like dampened but did not extinguish the reformist ethos characteristic of ASSA from which they sprang. Economics, political science, and sociology had applied sides aimed at improving social functioning.

    Between the Civil War and World War I, a particular strain of positivism with references to precisely measurable, deterministic physical processes had come to characterize scientific accounts of human conduct, pitting the likes of Herbert Spencer against William James. As a social Darwinist, Spencer had promoted an environmental determinism that had little room for individual influence on events, whereas the philosopher and psychologist William James had posited more proximate causes of human conduct and attributed to the will the power of attending to particular aspects of one's environment rather than others (Cooley, 1920; James, 1897; Spencer, 1881). Social reformers moved away from alleviating hardship through individual charity and increasingly to eliminating collective ills through sustained research that attended to broad structural and environmental causes of these collective ills. New institutional forms that brought together larger groups of researchers for long-term investigation took shape, with the backing of new general-purpose philanthropic foundations. The Carnegie Corporation, founded in 1911, and the Rockefeller Foundation, founded in 1913, brought unparalleled resources to social research. The Russell Sage Foundation, set up in 1907, served as a bridge from the former amateur social investigators to the emerging social scientists, who served in the traditional sphere of state and local policy while helping to create a national policy elite that increasingly looked to the federal government for solutions to the nation's social problems (Bulmer & Bulmer, 1981; Camic, 2007; Karl & Katz, 1981; Mafinezam, 2003; Smith, 1991).

    Along a slightly different vein, under a congressional charter signed by President Abraham Lincoln in 1863, the National Research Council (NRC) was created in 1916 to coordinate the work of U.S. scientists during World War I. The National Research Council (NRC) was reorganized in 1919 on a permanent basis, with funding totally from the private sector, including $5 million from the Carnegie Foundation to provide a building in Washington and maintain its administration. Throughout the 1920s, the National Research Council (NRC) served primarily as an administrative agency for the distribution and management of scientific research funds for foundations and other funding sources supporting scientific research, along with having a group of national experts to make decisions and exercise control over the expenditure of grants (Feuer & Maratano, 2010; Karl, 1969; National Research Council, 1933). The Social Service Research Council (SSRC), established in 1923 and funded by the Laura Spelman Rockefeller Trust, drew researchers from across the country and fostered interdisciplinary research aimed at addressing contemporary social problems and public policy (Bryson, 2009; Laski, 1928; Solovey, 2004; Worcester, 2001). Although different from many policy studies of today, these early research enterprises brought together technical experts with private citizens and officials of municipal governments across the country (Camic, 2007; Karl & Katz, 1981; Mafinezam, 2003; Smith, 1991).

    The emergence and development of these foundations, particularly the Russell Sage Foundation, nurtured a “faculty of experts” who did original social scientific research in a setting different from discipline-based faculties in the universities (Mafinezam, 2003). Although committed to educational and sometimes advocacy work—social-survey, statistical research and analysis of social conditions were viewed as means of raising awareness of social problems, of rousing the public to intelligent action—these researchers thought of themselves as nonetheless neutral scientific investigators. Between 1900 and 1928 about 2,700 such surveys were undertaken in the United States, including the Pittsburgh Survey, funded by the Russell Sage Foundation and directed by Paul V. Kellogg (1912), which by means of team research was the first to examine the effects of industrialization on the social life of one city (Greenwald & Anderson, 1996), resulting in a six-volume study of Pittsburgh's housing, sanitation, and working conditions, and whose final volume was published in 1914.

    In addition to such prominent figures in the history of the social work profession as Hull House's Jane Addams (1909, 1910; Addams & De Forest, 1902) and the Franklin Delano Roosevelt New Deal administrator Harry Hopkins (1934), another leading example was Mary van Kleeck, a graduate of Smith College in 1904, who began her career working for a settlement house in New York, where she surveyed the conditions of working women. She joined the Russell Sage Foundation and in 1909 became head of its Department of Industrial Studies. Her work and that of colleagues at the foundation (e.g., see van Kleeck, 1910, 1913, 1915, 1919) paved the way for her participation in government research projects in the Department of Labor during and after World War I, projects that in part led to the creation of the U.S. Women's Bureau (Smith, 1991).

    The early social scientists such as Mary van Kleeck were committed to the idea of public education, yet as their investigatory work became increasingly systematic and specialized, the relation between the expert and the public shifted, in a sense, from acting as doctors seeking to prevent and cure social ills to scientists of efficiency, experts in the techniques and methods of institutional management (Smith, 1991). By about 1910 the quest for efficiency had gained wide political currency, spurred in part by Frederick Taylor (1915), who had toiled since the 1880s to uncover scientific principles of management. Experts began to carve out permanent places within the bureaucratic domain of government; they set up bureaus of municipal research to advance the cause of efficient government. Henry Bruere, a student of economist and sociologist Thorstein Veblen at the University of Chicago, a student of political science at Columbia University, and a law degree recipient from Harvard University, helped organize the New York Bureau of Municipal Government, one of the best known of the new agencies, in 1907. By 1910 the bureau had 46 staff and by 1911 it ran the Training School for Public Service, the first in the United States dedicated to public administration. This was the linear ancestor of the Maxwell School of Syracuse University, which was the first university in the nation to offer graduate professional education in public administration, beginning in 1924. Also in 1910, seeking greater executive control of the budgetary process, President William Howard Taft set up the Commission on Economy and Efficiency, naming Frederick Cleveland of the New York Bureau chairman. Although the committee's work—which was reported in 1912 and went nowhere under the newly elected President Woodrow Wilson, who had little interest in budgetary reform—the proponents retreated to the New York Bureau. With financial assistance from the Rockefeller Foundation, these budget reformers kept their ideas alive in Washington by establishing in 1916 the private Institute for Government Research, which expanded and was renamed the Brookings Institution in 1927.

    Robert S. Brookings was a retired St. Louis businessman who at the time of his initial appointment to the institute's board was then president of the Board of Trustees of Washington University. The institute chair was Frank Goodnow, a scholar of public administration—having held the first American chair in the field at Columbia University—and president of Johns Hopkins University (Smith, 1991). The institute's first director, William Willoughby, a Johns Hopkins graduate, had been a statistician for the Labor Department and worked for both the U.S. Bureau of the Census and the Taft Commission on Economy and Efficiency. In 1919, Willoughby helped organize congressional hearings on budgetary reform, drafted a bill for the House Appropriations Committee, and lobbied to get the bill passed. President Wilson vetoed the bill, but it found favor with President Warren G. Harding who signed the Budget and Accounting Act in 1921. Budgetary reform was viewed by the institute's staff as nonpartisan administrative reform separate from political domains, adhering to the distinction between politics and administration that President Wilson (1887) had advanced as an academic—Wilson had completed the PhD in history and political science from Johns Hopkins University in 1886 and held academic appointments at Bryn Mawr College and Wesleyan University before going to Princeton University in 1890, where he served as president from 1902 to 1910 (Smith, 1991).

    In 1923 Brookings endowed a graduate department of government and economics at Washington University, St. Louis, whose curriculum reflected practical problems of government. Due to problems with Missouri tax law, the graduate program was reincorporated as a separate entity in the District of Columbia. In this innovative program, there were no formal courses, credits, or majors. Students were expected to work on practical projects with members of the staff at the Institute for Government Research and the Institute of Economics, with the aim of teaching students to solve contemporary problems. Friction developed between specialists in public administration, the economists, and teachers in the graduate program. At issue was the role of the expert in government and the intellectual tools that would influence policy. With a disdain for partisan politics, public administration experts wanted students to master accounting and finance, expressing continued faith in scientific methods and nonpartisan expertise. They criticized the graduate school for its focus on history and theory and its neglect of applied government. The economists explored broader issues including tariff and trade policies, agricultural policy, and the disposition of international war debts. They published books designed to guide policymakers through these complex topics. The graduate school's dean, Walter Hamilton, challenged the view that nonpartisan experts could determine the public interest and contended that unacknowledged choices among values lurked beneath the surface of policies. In Hamilton's view, policymakers needed broader training in the liberal arts to learn what values were at issue and how to think about ordering them. The graduate school closed; the Institute for Government Research and the Institute of Economics merged and formed the present-day Brookings Institution in 1927. What began as an effort to make federal agencies more efficient, the Brookings Institution continued to address budgetary and tax policies, international trade and economic issues, and agencies for international cooperation while retaining its language of efficiency (Smith, 1991).

    Between World War I and II, objectivists in general took a more extreme position about the premises that human volition and subjective consciousness have no place in social science. Objectivity meant more than lack of bias; it lay in the elimination of the psychological dimensions of experience and of the willing, feeling self. Further, neutrality in matters of ethics and public policy—that is, refraining from passing judgments or setting up ethical standards for human conduct—was more strictly observed across the social sciences academic disciplines. Such “objectivism” took various forms depending on the academic discipline: in philosophy, the referent linguistics of Charles K. Ogden and I.A. Richards (1923), and later logical positivism; in jurisprudence, the legal realism of Karl Llewellyn (1930/2008) and Jerome Frank (1930/2009); in psychology, the behaviorism of John B. Watson (1930), and the push for educational testing; in political science, the public opinion surveys and other empirical work of Harold Lasswell (1935/1990) and Charles Merriam (1924); in economics, the institutionalism of Wesley C. Mitchell (1925, 1927), who was also one of the main organizers of the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) set up in 1920; and in sociology, in the works of William F. Ogburn (1922), F. Stuart Chapin (1920/2009), and Luther Lee Bernard (1911) (Backhouse & Fontaine, 2010; Bannister, 1987).

    Among other things that detracted from the need for and use of social scientists during World War I, such as some anthropologists being used as spies (Boas, 1919), the war effort also showed the vast productive capacities of the United States while exposing a dearth of knowledge about the national economy and how essential statistical data were for sound planning and efficient economic management. Such concerns prompted Mitchell to organize the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), a new type of research institute that would collect data the government did not have at hand and whose empirical investigations would yield both theoretical insights about the economy and practical, tentative guidelines for policy-making (Mitchell, 1922, 1927). For example, Mitchell contended that forecasting of economic events, however tentative, nonetheless had a sound scientific basis and was a valuable phase of economic study—even erroneous forecasts enable researchers, policymakers, and business people to learn from such mistakes and make adjustments (Mitchell & van Kleeck, 1923).

    It was Herbert Hoover, however, who made a decade-long experiment with ways of connecting research and policy (Critchlow, 1986; Himmelberg, 1975; Karl, 1969; Metcalf, 1975; Smith, 1991; Tobin, 1995). As secretary of the Commerce Department from 1921 to 1929—who had also chaired the President's Conference on Unemployment in 1923 and worked with the National Research Council (NRC)—as president, Hoover's views reflected a basic consensus among “enlightened” business leaders, economists, and philanthropists, who saw the business cycle and irregular employment not as inevitable features of capitalism, the former a result of natural processes of overproduction and the latter necessary for a pool of surplus labor, but rather as aberrations, as signs of economic waste and inefficiency. Funded in part by the Rockefeller Foundation and drawing social scientists from the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), the Russell Sage Foundation, and elsewhere, Hoover fully expected his Research Committee on Social Trends to produce a thorough statement of social fact as a guide to social policy. The 1933 two-volume 1,500 page report, Recent Social Trends in the United States, however, was primarily descriptive, evaded the Depression, lacked agreement about diagnosis of the state of the economy, and, despite its comprehensive, analytic, and unbiased attributes, had little impact as a serviceable tool in guiding policy. Instead, the report exposed the gap between knowledge and its applications to policy: it offered neither clear remedies nor a framework for discussing whether the economic system needed repair or restructuring—something more than mere inefficiencies seemed to be at work. The value of social science knowledge as a contributing factor in policy deliberations and political action was severely questioned (Smith, 1991).

    The economic crisis of the 1930s provided policy experts an unparalleled opportunity to promote solutions. During his campaign for president, Franklin D. Roosevelt amassed a “Brain Trust” of academics to hammer out many of the initiatives that were eventually incorporated into the New Deal legislation. Unlike Hoover, the engineer deeply committed to scientific methods of fact-finding and deliberation, Roosevelt reached out to experts for something to try, to take action that met exigencies of the unprecedented national crisis. The rhetoric of economic and social experimentation, which was cast in terms of assessing the merits of proposed adjustments to and planning of programs and legislation, became commonplace among social scientists and politicians. During the legislative rush of 1933, the demand for knowledgeable researchers was insatiable as social science researchers from the Russell Sage Foundation, the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), and the Social Service Research Council (SSRC) in New York were lured to Washington to serve emergency agencies, such as the Federal Emergency Relief Administration and the Works Progress Administration. Brookings researchers were also enlisted, but broke with the administration over price-setting provisions in the version of the National Industrial Recovery Act that was finally passed (Smith, 1991).

    By 1938, with most of the New Deal programs in place, roughly 7,800 social scientists were working in the federal government, with over 5,000 of them economists. The newly launched Social Security Administration housed economists, demographers, and statisticians who did research that private agencies could not do, collecting social and economic data on a huge scale, analyzing programs, and looking at long-term needs of the elderly, children, and the disabled. Research in older federal agencies like the Bureau of Agricultural Economics, the Children's Bureau, and the Women's Bureau got an additional impetus. Scholarly disagreements and political controversies ensued. Economic planners, such as Rexford G. Tugwell from Columbia University and Simon Patten from the University of Pennsylvania, comfortable with a degree of corporate concentration, clashed with those who cursed bigness and wanted to restore free-market competition, such as Benjamin Cohen from Harvard University, and Harvard law school graduates David Lilienthal and Charles Wyzanski (Smith, 1991).

    A different type of research organization, the Twentieth Century Fund (TCF), also came into its own during this period, founded and funded by Edward A. Filene, the onetime department store magnate who devoted a portion of his fortune in 1911 to establishing a research organization interested in workers' cooperatives, the Cooperative League. Broadening its scope in 1919, the League was renamed the Twentieth Century Fund. Operating from Boston and New York, the Twentieth Century Fund adapted more quickly than the National Bureau of Economic Research and the Russell Sage Foundation to the fast-paced policymaking in the 1930s, in part because it focused on useable knowledge, a combination of laboratory research and practical experience, and was generally amenable to federal intervention. The Twentieth Century Fund assembled large committees of prominent scholars, business people, and public officials to oversee teams of researchers and writers who produced compendia of expert opinions on policy issues rather than original research, a sharp contrast to the National Bureau of Economic Research. It served as a broker of ideas, discussing the merits of policy proposals to address issues related to the stock market, labor relations, and problems of the elderly, health, and international debt structure and disseminating related distilled expert recommendations primarily to the president and officials in the executive branch of government and occasionally to members of Congress. The Twentieth Century Fund provided a forum for winnowing proposals and, along with research institutes such as Brookings and the Rockefeller Foundation, supported the National Bureau of Economic Research and the Social Service Research Council, and functioned as an instrument for building an elite consensus on policy (Karl & Katz, 1981; Smith, 1991).

    By the end of the 1930s, federal activism had transformed the wider public arena for debates about policies. As Karl and Katz (1981) note, this was a substantive cultural and institutional shift given the traditional unwillingness of Americans to give the national government the authority to set national standards of social well-being. The national focus moved from states and localities to Washington, with the executive branch of government accumulating considerable intellectual resources and organized interest groups building their own cadres of researchers, analysts, and public relations experts to be better able to engage governmental economists and lawyers. Long-time head of the Rockefeller Foundation's social science division J.H. Willits admonished that scholars drawn to Washington had sacrificed their independence, allying with patrician politicians, whether supporters or opponents of the New Deal and as advocates thinking less in terms of testable, amendable hypotheses and more of policy arguments with political consequences. Willits “decried the growing partisanship of the Washington intellectuals, their work as propagandists, and their resulting ‘blindness to inconvenient facts’” (as cited in Smith, 1991, p. 81). Whatever credibility academic or foundation scholars had as disinterested “fact finders” was severely eroded as these experts increasingly occupied policy advisory positions, working as planners and administrators of government programs. Knowledge looked less like a form of higher intellectual counsel than another instrument of political power, prompting Robert Lynd, professor of sociology at Columbia University, to ask the question “Knowledge for What?“ in a book of that title.

    Knowledge for What? (Lynd, 1939) raised doubts about the scientific claims of social scientists and such claims usefulness for policy by asking whose interests were actually served by a discipline pursuing disinterested inquiry into social conditions. Lynd was highly critical of the strictly empirical studies undertaken by the National Bureau of Economic Research, given its tacit assumption that private enterprise and the profit incentive alone were sufficient to guide the application of technical skills to problems of production and supply. He also faulted the Brookings Institution for allowing business interests to define its research agenda, in selection of problems to address and policy options to assess. Lynd admonished social scientists' quest for scientific certainty, professionalism, and service to power, the combination of which removed them from genuine social concerns. Social scientists' concern with technique, whether about research methods or management practices, rendered social scientists irrelevant in discussions of social and political ends. He advised social scientists to go beyond their own culture as the natural source of values and to explore more basic values rooted in people's needs and longings (Smith, 1991).

    Twentieth Century: World War II and Afterward

    World War II provided a response to Lynd's inquiry about the purpose of knowledge, one that despite horrific uses to which science was put—such as eugenics (Kenny, 2002; Lombardo, 2002), systematic slaughter of innocents, and unimaginably destructive weapons—nonetheless restored faith in scientific approaches to problem solving, namely, the goals of defeating fascism and afterward sustaining employment and production, as well as the military and political aims of combatting communist advances during the Cold War of the 1950s and 1960s. Social scientists joined the physicists, mathematicians, chemists and others in the war effort. By mid-1942 some fifteen thousand historians, geographers, linguists, anthropologists, economists, sociologists, and psychologists served in the State Department, Office of War Information, War Production Board, Office of Strategic Services, Bureau of Naval Personnel, Army Information and Education Division, and countless other wartime boards and agencies. Their practical contributions included economic analyses, public opinion surveys, intelligence testing, examinations of stress in combat, and explorations of group dynamics. Among the social sciences, economics emerged from the wartime experience as exerting the most tangible influence on the thinking of government officials and business people, giving rise to new research organizations in and out of government, such as the Committee for Economic Development (CED), and shaping policy in ways other advisory relationships could not (Backhouse & Fontaine, 2010; Lears, 2011; Smith, 1991).

    The Great Depression and FDR's New Deal policies were only preludes to debates about the government's role in the economy (Caputo, 1994). Policy research groups such as Brookings, the Twentieth Century Fund, and the National Bureau of Economic Research, took different stances about how best to maintain employment and production after the war, about what tools the government might use to intervene in economic affairs, and about what the limits of such interventions should be. The choice of particular policy instruments shaped the role that economists might play, with the likes of British economist John Maynard Keynes, who argued for government deficit spending or fiscal stimulus to reduce unemployment, and Austrian economist Friedrich Hayek, who argued against such measures for fear of inflation and potential political tyranny (Wapshott, 2011). Brookings threw its lot with opponents of the New Deal, both in Congress and in the business community, and it resisted what became a consensus of Keynesian ideas about demand management. The Twentieth Century Fund identified most closely with formal planning schemes and liberal interpretations of Keynes. The Russell Sage Foundation, which was more heavily swayed by academic sociologists in the mid-1940s, said little about the postwar economy. Amid this alignment among the well-established policy research groups, the Committee for Economic Development (CED) emerged as a major contributor (Smith, 1991).

    Founded in 1942, the Committee for Economic Development (CED) was run by business people and funded directly by business rather than by endowed foundations. It established a pattern of publishing scholarly work of individual staff members, while reserving for the business membership the prerogative of issuing institutional policy statements. The Committee for Economic Development's directors created a forum that brought “business thinking” together with representatives of government agencies and the most eminent scholars from American universities. The Committee for Economic Development served as the business person's bridge to both professional economists and governmental policymaking. It struck a policy course between orthodox fiscal conservatives, who persistently called for annually balanced budgets and minimal governmental intervention, and the liberal interpreters of Keynes, who had concluded that the economy was so prone to stagnation that continual governmental spending was needed to keep it going. The Committee for Economic Development specifically linked private enterprise to the common good, and it acknowledged a role for government intervention when “the ability of private individuals to better serve the common good” reached its limits” (Benton, 1944, p. 5).

    The Committee for Economic Development helped settle the debate on acceptable instruments of postwar economic policy—namely, the use of federal spending (fiscal policy), interest rates, and on occasion tax policy to stimulate and regulate demand. These tools in effect limited the scope of direct governmental involvement in the economy more narrowly than advocates of national planning had foreseen and set the boundaries for serious discussion of policies in the two decades after the war. Research results and policy recommendations that had relied on those scholars whose training had equipped them with tools and techniques of macroeconomics and aggregate economic analysis were given more weight in public policy debates. The economist's theory and analytic techniques were directly linked to policy measures that required the ongoing presence of economists in the government. By 1946 economic insights had become the basis of law—the Employment Act; and theory thereby determined where some economists would sit as governmental advisors, such as on the Council of Economic Advisors (CEA) in the executive branch of government and on the Joint Economic Committee in the legislative branch of government (Bernstein, 2004; Smith, 1991).

    In the 1950s the behavioral sciences—which came to mean psychology, sociology, and anthropology—and those parts of economics and political science concerned with individual and group behavior rather than institutions and processes, got a boost from the Ford Foundation, which set up a separate division under the direction of sociologist Bernard Berelson (Lyons, 1969). Grants of some $38.5 million were made over five years, much of it to major universities to enable them to improve conditions and facilities for research in the behavioral sciences. In 1954 the Center for the Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences in Palo Alto, California, was established as an independent Ford-launched enterprise.

    President John F. Kennedy expressed this optimism in the social sciences, discussing knowledge and political action in an address to Yale's graduates this way:

    What is at stake in our economic decisions today is not some grand warfare of rival ideologies which will sweep the country with passion but the practical management of a modern economy. What we need is not labels and clichés but more basic discussion of the sophisticated and technical questions involved in keeping a great economic machinery moving ahead. … I am suggesting that the problems of fiscal and monetary policies in the sixties as opposed to the kinds of problems we faced in the thirties demand subtle challenges for which technical answers, not political answers, must be provided. These are matters upon which government and business may and in many cases will disagree. They are certainly matters that government and business should be discussing in the most dispassionate, and careful way if we [are] to maintain the kind of vigorous [sic] upon which our country depends. (Woolley & Peters, 1962)

    As Lyons (1969) reported, in 1962 the president's Science Advisory Committee acknowledged the relevancy of the behavioral sciences and called for expansion of the National Academy of Sciences—National Research Council beyond anthropology and psychology. Shortly after the 1968 report of the National Academy's Advisory Committee on Government Programs in the Behavioral Sciences was submitted, calling for increased use of and support for the behavioral sciences, the National Research Council's Division of Anthropology and Psychology became the Division of Behavioral Sciences, which included anthropology, economics, political science, psychology, and sociology at that time, with history, geography, linguistics, and psychiatry added later.

    As Halberstam (1972) chronicled, presidents Kennedy and Lyndon Baines Johnson actively sought academics allured by proximity to action, to seeing their ideas used in the shaping of policy. The assumption then was that policy analysis units would be established at the top of organizations, with top executives and senior line staff as the clients for analysis. These clients were expected to define the perspective, values, and agenda for the analytic activity. The completed analysis was to become an additional resource for decision makers and thereby improve policymaking. Over the next several decades policy sciences developed as a formal branch of study, and ideologically driven think tanks seeking to influence government policies proliferated.

    Policy Studies

    The policy sciences emerged as an amalgamation of “the philosophies, procedures, techniques, and tools of the management and decision sciences—operations research, systems analysis, simulation, ‘war’ gaming, game theory, policy analysis, program budgeting, and linear programing” that had become accepted in business, industry, and defense between World War II and the Kennedy and Johnson administrations (Quade, 1970, p. 1). Acknowledging the disparate origins of the policy sciences, Lasswell (1970) identified a converging outlook, particularly about problem orientation and technique synthesis. Problem orientation included the intellectual tasks of goal clarification, trend description, analysis of conditions, projection of future developments, and invention, evaluation, and selection of alternatives. Technique synthesis entailed principles of content (for example, searching for equivalency of reference among theorists or policy participants) and procedure (e.g., establishing “referents” employed in a particular situation). In addition, lest anyone fret about an overemphasis on technique, the policy sciences as then understood also emphasized cultivation of the “creative flash” essential to innovative and realistic problem solutions. Reflecting the heady optimism of the times, Dror (1970, p. 135) characterized this “revolutionary” burgeoning new comprehensive and integrative field of studies as follows:

    Establishment of policy sciences as a new supradiscipline involves a scientific revolution, requiring fargoing innovations in basic paradigms. Particularly essential are: (1) Integration between various disciplines, and especially of social sciences with analytical decision approaches; (2) bridging of the “pure” vs. “applied” dichotomy; (3) acceptance of tacit knowledge as a scientific resource; (4) changes in interface between science and values; (5) broad time perspectives; (6) focus on metapolicies; (7) commitment to policymaking improvement; and (8) concern with extrarational and irrational processes, such as creativity.

    Unique subjects of policy analysis, opened up by these paradigms, include, among others, (a) policy analysis, which involves critical changes in system analysis so as to permit application to complex policy issues; (b) policy strategies, involving determination of postures and main guidelines for specific policies, such as on degrees of incrementalism vs. innovation and on attitudes to risks; (c) policymaking system redesign, including evaluation and improvement of the policymaking system, e.g., through changes in one-person-centered high-level decision-making, development of politicians, and institutionalization of social experimentation.

    Development of policy sciences requires many innovations in research, teaching, and professional activities. It constitutes a main effort to reconstruct the role of intellectualism and rationality in human affairs and, therefore, justifies intense efforts.

    Such heady optimism occurred when universities were marked by New Left student protests demanding greater “relevance” to address social problems in light of the Civil Rights movement, the Vietnam War, as well as those issues associated with the increased pace of social change accompanying the technological and cybernetic revolutions of the time (Feuer, 1969; Glazer, 1969; Jerome, 1969; Kerr, 1964; Reagan, 1969; Truman, 1968). The Great Society of the Lyndon Baines Johnson administration fostered the growth of the public policy research industry, with Brookings Institution scholar Henry J. Aaron (1978) noting the infancy, limitations, and disutility of the social sciences, claiming that they “undercut the faith” (p. 159) that led to many of LBJ's programs, and with Princeton professor Richard P. Nathan (1985) taking a more optimistic view about their usefulness as theories and methodologies improved.

    The policy sciences offered a way for universities to reverse what Fortune magazine editor Max Ways (1969) and others (Biderman, 1970) had claimed was the inward looking discipline approach to specialized knowledge that had become “independent from the direct demands of life” (as cited in Ericson, 1970, p. 434), despite (or perhaps in part because of) the proliferation of positivist-oriented social science research centers (Birnbaum, 1969; Rossi, 1964). Universities set up interdisciplinary centers for the study of public policy designed to produce hybrid doctoral or master's level professionals as research–scientists and practitioners. Those trained in these new programs would assume a variety of roles in policy-making organizations, such as policy analysts, evaluation researchers, knowledge brokers, research feedback disseminators, process monitors, and consultants. The Public Policy Program of the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, the Policy Sciences Program at the State University of New York, Buffalo, the Institute of Public Policy Studies at the University of Michigan, and the Graduate School of Industrial Administration at Carnegie-Mellon University were examples of these new graduate programs (Benker, 1971; Bunker, 1971; Crecine, 1971). The 1980s push in social work for research practitioners was quite consistent with this earlier development in the policy sciences (Tripodi, Layalayants, & Zlotnik, 2008).

    In addition to finding a home within universities, freestanding or independent research institutes also provided opportunities for the development of the policy sciences. Building on its extensive links to faculty and research institutions in major metropolitan areas such as the University of California at Los Angeles and the New School for Social Research in New York City, the RAND Corporation developed its own graduate program in policy analysis (Wolf, 1971). The program consisted of nine academic quarters of ten weeks each, and the curriculum included:

    (a) an “on-the-job” training segment, comprising ongoing Rand research projects that students will work on, initially in an apprenticeship role, assuming increasing responsibility as training progresses; (b) a seminar workshop based on ongoing and prior Rand studies, conducted by the project leader and participants in the study; and (c) two core courses, one in concepts and theory and the other in tools and techniques, which would continue through the entire nine quarters. (Wolf, 1971, p. 5)

    The apprenticeship/on-the-job segment was viewed as providing research organizations such as RAND a comparative advantage over universities, given immediate and continuous exposure to real policy problems from start to completion of requirements for a doctorate. Qualifying students had to have a master's degree and at least a modest degree of literacy in mathematics, the social sciences, and the physical sciences. As with policy studies in universities, the graduate program at RAND was comprehensive and inclusive, although some modes of contemporary discourse—particularly those associated more with qualitative or interpretive approaches to research—were noticeably absent. A typical course of study in the RAND program would nonetheless include how a problem was initially conceived, how it changed in the course of effort, methodological and data problems encountered in the process of carrying out the analysis and how they were resolved, results and implementation (if any) issuing from the study, and how it might be done differently in light of what was gleaned from participation in the project. The concept and theory courses included microeconomic theory, mathematical game theory, decision theory, and organization theory, as well as the politics of policymaking, and law and legal reasoning. Tools and techniques included computer software and hardware, multivariate analysis, operations research, linear and dynamic programming, program budgeting, cost-benefit and systems analysis, simulation, and forecasting through Delphi and other techniques (Wolf, 1971).

    If anything were lacking in such burgeoning programs in the early 1970s, it was the “frank confrontation of the value issues in the teaching of policy sciences” (Dror, 1971, p. 84). Discussion of values was deemed important to lessen the possibility of “corruption of the policy sciences on the one hand and/or (these two dangers can go together) subordination of the policy sciences to any one particularistic advocacy approach on the other” (p. 84). Tribe (1972) echoed this sentiment when he identified the anesthetizing of moral sentiments or values as one of four main distorting effects of the policy sciences' adherence to the objectivist ideal. A second distorting effect, narrowing the role of rationality, precluded taking account of values in the process of choices associated with problem formation, desired ends or outcomes of policies to the exclusion of considering others, and weights given to assessing probabilities of likely outcomes.

    The two remaining distorting effects, typical of economic reasoning and analysis, were collapsing processes into results—that is, treating process as exogenous, and collapsing results into an undifferentiated mass that presupposed a common metric of equivalency valuations when confronted with alternative courses of action. Tribe indicated that each of these distorting effects of adherence to the objectivist ideal were correctable. As the policy sciences developed over the next several decades, they addressed the concerns Tribe raised, and while doing so they had to confront postmodernist thinking, which also encouraged the field to grapple with value issues. Somewhat paradoxically, as the policy sciences adapted to incorporate values analysis as part of their core programming, throughout the 1980s and beyond proliferation of ideologically driven think tanks contributed to the very subordination of much policy analysis to advocacy efforts—about which hopeful proponents of policy studies such as Dror (1971) and of think tanks such as Dror (1984) had warned and not foreseen.

    In addition to challenges from postmodernist thinkers, the policy sciences also faced challenges about their usefulness and relevancy by those within the social sciences. Political scientist Edward C. Banfield (1977) noted with alarm the proliferation of policy sciences in universities throughout the United States and in the various branches of the U.S. government. He contended that few social science theories or findings were of much assistance to policymakers, citing as evidence the lackluster results of the Ford Foundation's efforts to produce a handbook of behavioral sciences for policy making. Not only were the policy sciences theoretically bereft, their methods and techniques—steeped as they were in the computer sciences and operations research on one hand and in economic or mathematical modeling on the other—were inappropriate. “It will always be impossible to construct a formal model that will be of use to policymakers,” Banfield quipped, “when, as is the case with ‘important’ problems, one cannot identify all of the crucial parameters or match them with adequate data” (p. 19). Further, political executives and lawmakers did not know enough or were unlikely to learn enough statistics to interpret analysts' reports. The short-term election cycle that framed lawmakers' interest in reelection worked against sustained systematic analysis. Banfield also noted that the policy sciences added to the complexity of social problem solving rather than further clarifying things: in particular, results were too often ambiguous and recommendations less than clear-cut, especially about alternative courses of action. In the final analysis, echoing the art versus science debates about social work practice (Powell, 2003), Banfield contended that policymakers required “not policy science, but good judgment, or better, the union of virtue and wisdom which the ancients called prudence” (p. 31).

    By the mid-1980s, however, it was clearly evident that, regardless of institutional setting, whether in universities, in independent research institutes, or in think tanks, policy analyses that disregarded the policy process were inadequate, that politics mattered, and that case studies per se were limited and needed to incorporate the self-awareness of the analyst in the policy process (Ascher, 1987). Reflecting upon what it meant to do an analysis that way was deemed requisite to increasing understanding about issues in the policy process and the characteristics of that process, as well as to enhancing the ability to solve other problems. Despite some internal disciplinary critiques, for the most part social science and policy analysis had so fused theories and techniques that they invariably reflected applications of the same habit of mind, albeit in different settings and for different audiences (Mead, 1985). This is not to suggest that they completely overlapped, that policy analysts and social scientists were interchangeable, or that they did the same things. Behn (1985) insisted that having a client was a requisite for doing policy analysis. This criterion provided a basis for evaluating any piece of policy analysis, making possible an assessment of how demanding and rigorous the analysis would be. As will be seen below when discussing roles of policy analysts and again when discussing the proliferation of think tanks, having a client nonetheless poses challenges to policy analysts who worry about maintaining the integrity of their work while helping policymakers do their job.

    The key standard for evaluating the merits of policy analysis, Behn (1985) contended, is policy relevance, helping a policy-making client do his or her job, vis-à-vis the social scientists' standard of contributing to advancing their respective disciplines by producing general theory. For Behn, “policy significance is more demanding than the standard of statistical significance, which dominates academic social science” (p. 430). Policymakers invariably juggle important concerns beyond the development of scientifically reproducible, statistically significant tests of propositions that relate policy actions to policy consequences, a prime concern for discipline-oriented social scientists. Other concerns of policymakers include more substantive matters such as managing conflicts between interests, obtaining general agreement on a particular course of action, working out how action on one issue affected other issues, even if apparently unrelated. The “good” policy analyst must be able to expose conflicting values that affect a policy choice, develop creative options, specify uncertainties about possible consequences of policy options, develop outcome measures so actions can be evaluated and modified accordingly, and design strategies for political adoption and organizational implementation. The professional standard that the policy analyst must be able to present all of this “clearly, concisely, and convincingly,” Behn opined, “disqualifies most social scientists from the business” (p. 430). Testing relationships between variables over which policymakers had little or no control further reduces the policy relevancy of much social science research.

    Also accenting differences between academic and nonacademic policy analysts, Cook and Vaupel (1985) suggested three styles of research that varied by audience: (1) policy analysts—decision-maker clients; (2) policy researchers—present and future policymakers, policy analysts, academics, the public; and (3) applied social science researchers—academics and policy analysts. Cook and Vaupel further commented that the type of products also varied: policy analysts were more likely to produce staff memos, summaries, and position papers that were neither prepared for nor expected to be published; policy researchers produced monographs, the research agendas of which were defined by a particular policy problem rather than the needs and interests of academic disciplines; and applied social science researchers produced technical articles, reflecting a primary concern with obtaining answers that were reasonable given available information rather than to use the most sophisticated available techniques or to confirm disciplinary preferences or prejudices.

    Although the policy sciences met their interdisciplinary objectives, fending off challenges from single-discipline approaches and the general-law approach associated with “behavioralism,” overreliance on instrumental reasoning, a technocratic orientation, and application of neoclassical economics to social science issues remained problematic (Ascher, 1987; deLeon, 1994). Neoclassical economists assumed a generalizable preference ordering to explain, for example, how people decide on family size, for nations, whether to wage war, or for politicians what platform issues to advance. For the policy sciences no a priori objective functions could be taken for granted: even Maslow's value hierarchy would be regarded as very unlikely to hold universally, stripped as it was of any contextually driven variation. Further, for the policy sciences maximization efforts of nongovernmental individuals were not assumed to be confined to oneself or one's family unit, as was the case in neoclassical economics. Value maximization, to the extent it occurred, did serve as a point of departure for the policy sciences, with many potential beneficiaries, yet unlike neoclassical economics posited little confidence that such pursuits yielded general laws in the aggregate (such as equilibrium) or even precise answers in particular instances. The policy sciences placed much more emphasis on conditions that affected the achievement of valued outcomes. Contextual conditions included recognizing the importance of and accounting for the intentions of policymakers and variations in other more subjective factors (Ascher, 1987).

    Proliferation of Think Tanks

    As an organizational form continually negotiating the institutional space it occupies as a significant contributor shaping policy debates and promoting public policies, think tanks are a late twentieth century phenomenon (Medvetz, 2012). They emerged as a distinct form of social organization from a proliferation of policy research centers after 1970, increasingly competing with each other for funding, media visibility, and political attention. Over time, despite ideological differences they became increasingly linked, for example, by sharing personnel, organizing conferences, and producing similar products, such as policy briefs, background reports, issue briefs, and the like. Think tanks came to occupy an intellectual niche between academia, politics, the media, and the market, with several cultural and institutional markers. For a more thorough treatment, see Medvetz (2012).

    The idea of think tanks as currently understood had not developed in the 1960s when the Kennedy and Johnson administrations actively pursued scholars. By one estimate over two-thirds of think tanks that existed in the United States by the mid-1990s were founded after 1970 (Rich, 2000, pp. 64–65). At that time, the Brookings Institution and the RAND Corporation typified the role of policy analysts in and out of government service. RAND, which had its own programs with students earning doctorates, was launched in 1946 as a freestanding division within the Douglas Aircraft Company and became independent of Douglas in 1948 (Campbell, 2004; Fortune & Schweber, 1993; Specht, 1960). In particular, the contract research organization RAND and think tank became synonymous as a way of organizing and financing research, development, and technical evaluation that would be done at the behest of government agencies but was carried out by privately run nonprofit research centers. RAND also contributed to the development of new analytic methods characteristic of systems and strategic thinking, of which operations research (OR), Program Planning and Budgeting Systems (PPBS), game theory, and cost-benefit analyses were examples, adding to the existing array of policy serviceable tools and techniques such as survey research, institutional analysis, and aggregate statistical studies (Fischer, 1991; Hart, 1978; Mirowski, 2005; Sapolsky, 2004; Smith 1991).

    Many of the paradoxes associated with the heady optimism of linking scientific knowledge in general and social scientific knowledge in particular to political action became increasingly apparent—pointed out by those on the left and right of the political spectrum throughout the 1960s (Biderman, 1970; Lyons, 1969; Medvetz, 2012). Reactions to the cancellation of Project Camelot, a military sponsored social science study of revolutionary processes highlighted connections between Cold War politics, military patronage, and American social science, helping to undermine mainstream scholarly epistemological commitments to objectivity and related ideals, such as value-neutrality and professional autonomy (Solovey, 2001). Similarly, the War on Poverty, urban and race-related strife, antiwar protests, and the emergent modern feminist movement challenged many operating assumptions about the relationship between the state and science. Horowitz (1970) showed how social scientists engaged in government, such as those in Project Camelot, were committed to advocacy models defined by politicians and how such social scientists did not establish or verify policy but rather legitimated it.

    In particular, as scholars and policymakers alike highlighted the limitations of the social sciences in addressing social problems, policy experts and advocates first on the left of the political spectrum and then on the right became ascendant, (1) creating an ideological divide that made little pretense of objectivity, and (2) legitimating an organizational form labeled think tanks, as an alternative to universities, for nurturing and promoting policy analysts and commentators who sought to shape public policy and social action (Easterbrook, 1986; Fischer, 1991; Medvetz 2007). On the one hand, there was Daniel Patrick Moynihan (1970)—whose earlier report about the black family in America (U.S. Department of Labor, Office of Planning and Research, 1965) was part of the reason for the Office of Economic Opportunity (OEO) policies and programs designed to expand employment opportunities primarily for urban black American males (Cravens, 2004; Horowitz, 1970), but who nonetheless indicted the War on Poverty. There were also Marris and Rein (1969), whose examination of community action programs highlighted the incompatibility between serious research that had to adhere to a definite course of action to allow for testing of theoretically driven hypotheses and policies and programs that were inevitably tentative, non-committal, and adaptive (Fischer, 1991; Smith, 1991).

    On the other hand, situated on the political left compared to Brookings and RAND, was the Institute for Policy Studies (IPS), opened in 1963, and the Urban Institute, currently one of Washington's largest policy research organizations and founded in 1968. Funded primarily by a handful of wealthy families with liberal leanings such as Sears' heir Philip Stern, James Warbug (banking), and the Samuel Rubin Foundation (Fabergé perfumes), the public scholars at IPS were dismissive of objectivity and suspicious of claims of a value-free social science that could direct policy. IPS co-founder Marcus Raskin (1971), for example, criticized social science in general and operations research in particular for reinforcing hierarchical aspects or the “pyramidal structure” (p. xiii) of American society and government, contending that policy experts and their analytic tools were antithetical to ideals of participatory democracy (Smith, 1991). Retaining a faith in enlightened human action as self-perfecting, Raskin's “existential pragmatism rooted in experience and experiment” (p. xxv) called for reconstituting society based on a new kind of knowledge, with empathy and verification replacing the meaningless facts gathered by bureaucratic policy analysts as guides to social action (Lowi, 1971; Michelson, 1971).

    On the political right, originally founded by business people in 1943, the American Enterprise Association was renamed the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) for Public Policy Research in 1960 at the request of board member economist turned policy entrepreneur William J. Baroody. Labeling Brookings “liberal,” AEI subsequently evolved into one of Washington's most prominent policy-research centers, with half its revenues from corporations, one-third from foundations (e.g., John M. Olin Foundation and the J. Howard Pew Freedom Trust, part of the Pew Charitable Trusts), and much of the remainder from individuals. Through part-time arrangements, visiting fellowships, consultancies, grant-funded research projects, and resident fellowships, AEI built an expanding network of conservative academics and politicians during the 1990s, including former president Gerald R. Ford, Melvin Laird, Arthur Burns, Herbert Stein, Jeane J. Kirkpatrick, Murray Weidenbaum, James Miller, Lawrence Korb, and Michael Novik. In addition, Irving Kristol, the founding editor of The Public Interest and professor of social thought at New York University, made AEI his Washington base of operations (Smith, 1991).

    The Heritage Foundation was founded by a group of conservative legislative aides in 1973, with nearly half (about 44%) its financial resources coming from individual donors such as Colorado brewer Joseph Coors and Mellon heir John Scaife, and more than one-quarter (28%) from foundations (e.g., the John M. Olin Foundation and the oil and gas Noble Foundation of Oklahoma). Many of its domestic economic policy analysts focus on budget cutting and tax reform proposals and they advocate for free market approaches, especially about environmental issues. Members of Congress and their staffs comprise the primary clientele of Heritage, but its two hundred plus publications per year, from short policy briefs to full length books such as Mandate for Leadership: Policy Management in a Conservative Administration, edited by Charles L. Heatherly, enable it influence a broader market. Its long-standing president Edwin Feulner (1985) explicitly laid out Heritage's agenda to promote conservative ideas and shape the political agenda. In the 1980s, Heritage actively promoted the idea of supply side economics advanced by business economist Laffer (1981) to opinion leaders in Washington, by coauthoring Essays in Supply Side Economics with the Institute for Research on the Economics of Taxation and cohosting a conference that attracted 400 members of Congress, administration officials, professors, and media representatives. In its efforts to make conservative ideas mainstream, Heritage has come close to collapsing the legal boundary separating research and education from outright lobbying, and it explicitly dismisses any pretense to objectivity, elevating its advocacy role. Staff at Heritage marshal facts and ideas to serve their cause, as one staffer explained:

    We state upfront what our beliefs are and admit that we are combatants in the battle of ideas. … We are not just for better government and efficiency, we are for particular ideas … the staff uses its expertise to mobilize arguments. They are advocates. … We make it clear to them that they are not joining an academic organization but one committed to certain beliefs. We tell them that they will write papers with a format that is not for a professional peer group. (Smith, 1991, pp. 205–206)

    The resignation of U.S. Senator Jim DeMint (R-SC) in December 2012 to become president of the Heritage Foundation is telling, suggesting continuity with the role of advocacy. DeMint helped ignite the anti–tax increase grassroots Tea Party Movement that had played a prominent role in securing a Republican majority in the U.S. House of Representatives in the 2010 mid-term elections and that opposed, albeit unsuccessfully, the reelection of Barack Obama in 2012 (Tea Party Movement, 2012). Upon resigning from the U.S. Senate, DeMint was reported to have stated “I've decided to join the Heritage Foundation at a time when the conservative movement needs strong leadership in the battle of ideas” (Steinhauer, 2012b). Elsewhere he stated, “We must take our case to the people themselves, and we must start where all good marketing starts: with research. … We need to test the market and our message to communicate more effectively” (DeMint, 2013; also cited in Silverstein, 2013).

    For Heritage and other contemporary policy institutes such as RAND and Cato, political ideas have become commodities to be sold, experts are those who gain access to media, and the objective is for more immediate or short-term political gains (Fischer, 1991; McGann, 2007; Stahl, 2008). Such policy research centers have come to occupy the organizational space that became known more formally as “think tanks,” in effect nullifying earlier contentions by Lane (1966) and Bell (1960), which were suspect even then (Hodges, 1967), that scientific knowledge had eclipsed ideology in the making of social policy (Segal, 2004). Based on a study of 410 think tanks, Minozzi (2006) reported a positive correlation between percentage increases in ideological statements within mission statements and percentage increases of total funding from private donors, in 2003, when controlling for a variety of other factors such as total expenses, age, and number of mentions in newspapers. The finding suggested market forces are contributing to contemporary partisanship among think tanks.

    Access to information about such policy experts is readily available. Heritage, which has long published press handbooks and directories of experts such as The Annual Guide to Public Policy Experts, maintains an online (http://www.policyexperts.org/) listing of U.S. and international policy experts: such scholars can be searched by name, organization, country, state, region, and by issue, with links provided to their curricula vitae, résumés, and biographies, as well as indicating whether they testified before a state or federal legislative committee. RAND also has an online list of policy experts with links to their curricula vitae, publications, and commentaries, many of which are downloadable, in addition to a media resources icon indicating whether they are available for interviews and, if so, with information about how to contact them to do so (http://www.rand.org/media/experts.html).

    Also, with seed money from the Fred C. Koch Trust, the self-proclaimed libertarian Cato Institute was founded in San Francisco in 1977 and moved to Washington, DC, in 1981 when it began to exert a significant intellectual influence on national policy debates (Smith, 1991). Cato also has an online list of policy exerts, although given its libertarian ethos, with a far more limited number than those of Heritage or RAND but also with additional links to curricula vitae and publications, speeches, and commentaries, many of which are also downloadable (http://www.cato.org/people/experts.html). As with the Heritage Foundation, Cato explicitly states advocacy as a major component of its mission to promote its brand of free-market ideas:

    The mission of the Cato Institute is to increase the understanding of public policies based on the principles of limited government, free markets, individual liberty, and peace. The Institute will use the most effective means to originate, advocate, promote, and disseminate applicable policy proposals that create free, open, and civil societies in the United States and throughout the world. (Cato Institute, 2011)

    Given their antipathy to government sponsored initiatives and programs, other Cato-like libertarian think tanks such as Maine's Hannibal Hamlin Institute, Pennsylvania's Commonwealth Foundation, California's Claremont Institute, and Colorado's Independence Institute, the Dallas-based National Center for Policy Analysis, the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research, and Florida's James Madison Institute, focus on state and local level governments, many seeking to create free-market based policy models that are applicable elsewhere (Smith, 1991).

    Medvetz's (2007, 2012) sociological explanatory account and historical overview of the development and contemporary understanding of the role of think tanks in the United States highlights the decided structural shift in the 1970s and thereafter when objective analysis was summarily rejected. The merits of think tanks' intellectual products were judged less by academic, scholarly, or objective standards and more by politics, business, and journalism. This was most evident in the welfare reform debates in the 1990s, the closing Case in Point of this volume.

    Web Sites

    Association for Policy Analysis and Management—http://www.appam.org/

    Association for Research on Nonprofit Organizations and Voluntary Action—http://www.arnova.org/

    Center for American Progress Experts—http://www.americanprogress.org/about/experts-alphabetical/

    Council on Social Work Education—http://www.cswe.org/

    Government Accountability Office (GAO – formerly, the General Accounting Office)—http://www.gao.gov/

    Information for Practice—http://ifp.nyu.edu/

    Institute for Policy Studies—http://www.ips-dc.org/

    National Association of Social Workers—http://socialworkers.org/

    NIRA's World Directory of Think Tankshttp://www.nira.or.jp/past/ice/nwdtt/2005/index.html

    Rand policy experts—http://www.rand.org/media/experts.html

    Social Entrepreneurs: Pioneering Social Change—YouTube video (9:04 minutes) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jk5LI_WcosQ

    Social Work Policy Institute—http://www.socialworkpolicy.org/

    The Annual Guide to Public Policy Expertshttp://www.policyexperts.org/

    The Digital Library at the University of North Texas [for Congressional Research Service Reports]—http://digital.library.unt.edu/explore/collections/CRSR/

    The Library of Congress: THOMAS—http://thomas.loc.gov/home/thomas.php

    Web Center for Social Research Methods—http://www.socialresearchmethods.net/

    WWW Virtual Library: Evaluation—http://www.policy-evaluation.org/

    Glossary

    Administrative feasibility:

    the likelihood that a department or agency can implement the policy or deliver the program well.

    Advocacy Coalition Framework:

    used to analyze processes associated with policymaking; assesses the learning that occurs by coalition members and its relationship to policy change within policy subsystems over time

    Cost-benefit analysis:

    a widely used tool that summarizes both positive and negative consequences of a proposed policy or program, and then weighs these against each other. A common metric or unit of measure is determined, usually in dollars. Cost-benefit analysis relies on several monetization methods (e.g., travel cost method, avoided cost method, contingent valuation methods) to determine one's willingness to pay, the dollar amount, for one more unit of the good in question. Cost-benefit analysis also includes determination of shadow prices (intangible costs and benefits).

    Critical thinking:

    mental processes of conceptualizing, synthesizing, and evaluating information that is clear, rational, open-minded, and informed by evidence.

    Decision-theoretic evaluations:

    use descriptive methods to produce reliable and valid information about policy outcomes that are explicitly valued by multiple stakeholders.

    Difference Principle:

    a social welfare function in which a reallocation of resources is justified to the extent that the reallocation is to the greatest benefit of the least advantaged members of society.

    Disjointed incrementalism:

    a mode of policy analysis that relies on partisan mutual adjustments as an effective way of improving the political nature of the policy-making process, primarily by curbing the power dimension often associated with politics.

    Effectiveness:

    the likelihood of achieving policy goals and objectives or demonstrated achievement of them.

    Efficiency:

    an assessment of achieving program goals or providing benefits in relation to costs.

    Elite theory:

    of public policy portrays policy as a function of a governing elite whose preferences and values influence how social problems and policy responses get formulated by virtue of their control over and leadership roles among large corporate and financial institutions.

    Equity:

    fairness or justice in the distribution of a policy's cost, benefits, and risks across population subgroups.

    Evaluability assessment:

    a set of procedures designed to analyze decision-making systems that benefit from performance information by clarifying the goals, objectives, and assumptions against which performance is to be measured.

    Explanatory theories:

    usually meant to be viewed as complementary, essential, and legitimate domains of policy analysis, rather than as competing, adversarial, or mutually exclusive.

    Feasible manipulations:

    approach to determining policy alternatives entails identifying policy-relevant variables the modifications of which form the basis for developing coherent strategies that can be subsequently revised as the problem the policies are meant to address is redefined and evaluation criteria shift.

    Formal evaluations:

    use descriptive methods to produce reliable and valid information about policy outcomes that have been formally announced as policy program objectives.

    Formative evaluations:

    monitor continuously the accomplishment of formal goals and objectives of policies and programs.

    Interest group theory of politics:

    situations where both costs and benefits of political engagement are concentrated, providing the relevant actors with incentives to participate in policymaking and policy analysts with a way of readily identifying and predicting their reactions to policy proposals.

    Levels of evaluative logic:

    include verification, validation, vindication, and rational choice. In verification, evaluation focuses on the empirical demonstration of whether the program or policy under evaluation fulfills the requirements of the norms introduced by decision makers and other stakeholders as appropriate. In validation, evaluation asks whether the goal itself is compatible with the basic value systems that provide competing criteria in the judgment process. In vindication, evaluation seeks to determine whether the value system is instrumental or contributive to the adopted way of life or culture. In rational choice, program evaluators and policy analysts examine alternative ways of life and seek to show the extent to which a particular choice about a way of life was governed by rational processes in free and open deliberation.

    Lexicographic ordering:

    a policy where alternatives are ranked, one criterion at a time, starting with the most important first. If two or more alternatives occupy the highest ranking on the most important criterion, then they are compared on the second criterion. The surviving alternatives are compared on the third most important criterion, and so forth.

    Liberty:

    or freedom; refers to the extent to which public policy extends or restricts privacy and individual rights and choices.

    Logic of governance (LOG):

    framework used to analyze implementation of policies; rests on the notion that politics, policymaking, public management, and service delivery are hierarchically linked with one another in the determination of public policy outputs and outcomes. Logic of governance suggests that policy analysts are well advised to take into account management actions and processes as initiation of management structures, management tools, and values, as well as service delivery actions and processes such as fieldworker discretion and values and the carrying out of administrative rules and regulations.

    Macroeconomists:

    focus on the economy as a whole and study the determinants of total output. Inflation, unemployment, growth, and changes in the level of business activity are the subject matters of macroeconomics.

    Market failures:

    circumstances in which decentralized behavior—the respective maximizing actions of individuals (satisfaction) and firms (profits)—does not lead to Pareto efficiency—that is, a distribution of goods in such a way that no one could be better off without making anyone else worse off.

    Means test:

    an investigation into the financial well-being of a person, family, or household to determine eligibility for social benefits.

    Microeconomics:

    deals with studies of behavior of the individual participants (e.g., households, business firms) in the economy: how individual businesses behave in competitive environments, and how prices of individual commodities are determined.

    Moral hazard:

    situations where the behavior of one party may change to the detriment of another—for example, insured drivers in no-fault states may become less cautious about speed limits, coming to a full stop at stop signs, or remaining a safe distance behind the vehicle in front of them because negative consequences of such actions are partially if not fully absorbed by the insurance company.

    Multi-attribute utility analysis:

    a set of procedures designed to elicit from multiple stakeholders subjective judgments about the probability of occurrence and value of policy outcomes.

    Normative justifications or theories:

    involve a defense or critique of moral and ethical positions in relation to a policy or program—for example, questions about the desirability of ends or appropriateness of means to achieve those ends. They are usually meant to be viewed as complementary, essential, and legitimate domains of policy analysis, rather than as competing, adversarial, or mutually exclusive.

    Objectivity:

    in its most common usage refers to the attitude of the impartial or unbiased observer, often contrasted with social constructivists.

    Opportunity costs:

    those associated with the loss of the next-best alternative. Free goods have zero opportunity costs—that is, users can have more, like air, without others having to give up some of the good. Scarce goods have positive opportunity cost—that is, in order to have more of a scarce good (e.g., electricity), an alternative must be sacrificed, so the billion tons of coal, seven trillion cubic meters of natural gas, and the 190 million barrels of petroleum used to produce electricity could have been used for other things, such as driving more miles or creating more petrochemical products.

    Outcome equity, often used interchangeably with social justice:

    the fair distribution of societal goods such as wealth, income, or political power.

    Path dependence theory:

    how past policy decisions affect the content and likely adoption of proposed policy alternatives.

    Policy institutes:

    primarily nonprofit (tax exempt) organizations that perform research and advocacy functions for social policy purposes.

    Political feasibility:

    the likelihood that a policy will be adopted—that is, the extent to which elected officials accept and support a policy proposal.

    Positivism:

    an approach to understanding that includes the ontological belief in a deterministic universe and the epistemological beliefs that knowledge reflects external realities, the laws of the universe can be known, and science can be unified through a common methodology, one that favors deductive, inductive, and reductionist/analytical approaches and quantitative analyses.

    Probative inference:

    a conclusion, drawn from the vocabulary of jurisprudence, that has been established such that those making the claim are prepared to support it as beyond reasonable doubt. It is contrasted to statistical (probabilistic) inference.

    Process equity:

    decision-making procedures or processes—that is, the extent to which they are voluntary, open, and fair to all participants.

    Pseudo-evaluations:

    use descriptive methods to produce reliable and valid information about policy outcomes.

    Risk:

    the probability that an event or exposure will occur and the consequences that follow if it does.

    Risk assessment:

    the use of different methods to identify, estimate, and evaluate the magnitude of the risk to citizens from exposure to various intermittent situations such as natural hazards (e.g., hurricanes and earthquakes), as well as to various daily life situations such as driving a car.

    Risk evaluation:

    the determination of the acceptability of the risks or a decision about what level of safety is desired.

    Satisficing:

    a rule-of-thumb way of making a satisfactory, but not necessarily the best choice among policy alternatives.

    Scarcity:

    resources (land and natural resources, labor, and capital, which are called factors of production) in which the amount that economic agents would want free of charge exceeds the amount available.

    Selective benefits:

    available on the basis of individual need, usually determined by a means test.

    Sensitivity analysis:

    often used as a corrective to cost-benefit analysis; a technique used to determine how different values of a causal factor or an independent variable will impact a particular outcome or dependent variable under a given set of assumptions.

    Social auditing:

    an approach to evaluation that explicitly monitors relations among inputs, processes, outputs, and impacts in an effort to trace policy inputs from the points of disbursement to the point at which they are experienced by the intended recipients of those resources.

    Social construction framework:

    for analyzing processes associated with policymaking; relies on the notion that interpretive frameworks used to interpret our observations of the world can to some extent be altered by arguments, thereby providing an avenue for changing the political support for various policies. It applies this notion to the distribution of benefits and burdens among the groups that are targets of public policies, identifying four target groups in reference to their social construction and political power: advantaged, contenders, dependents, and outsiders.

    Social constructivists:

    a proposition that all knowledge is value-laden, a by-product of social interactions reflecting cultural norms and values (weak sense) or inherently supportive of cultural norms and values (strong sense).

    Social entrepreneurship:

    a contemporary global movement that links market-based principles and incentives with social purposes. It involves the innovative use and combination of resources to pursue opportunities to bring about social change and address social needs.

    Social experimentation:

    an approach to evaluation that entails the systematic manipulation of policy actions in a way that permits more or less precise answers to questions about the sources of change in policy outcomes. It has many forms including laboratory, field, and quasi-experimentation.

    Social welfare function:

    provides an alternative to Pareto efficiency as a way of allocating goods. Instead of defining efficiency as the inability to make someone better off without making someone else worse off (Pareto efficiency), efficiency is defined as the allocation of goods that maximizes the greatest good.

    Stakeholders:

    those who have a concern in an evaluation and may include the presumptive or targeted beneficiaries for whom policies are made and programs implemented, as well as the policymakers and others with economic, pragmatic, moral, and/or ethical interests in programmatic outputs and outcomes.

    State dependence:

    how current policies affect the content and likely adoption of proposed policy alternatives.

    Street-level bureaucrats:

    include police, teachers, social workers, nurses, doctors, lawyers, and other service providers such as lower court judges, corrections officers, and prison guards, who occupy positions that have relatively high degrees of discretion and relative autonomy from organizational authority.

    Summative evaluations:

    monitor the accomplishment of formal goals and objectives after a policy or program has been in place for some period of time.

    Substitutability:

    the possibility that a public policy or program may be used in such a way so as not to produce desired effects. Food stamps, for example, whose recipients are meant to increase their food purchases and consumption, may instead hold such purchases and consumption and use the money “released” by their availability to purchase other commodities of choice.

    Taxes:

    the main source of revenue for government, with varying distributional or “burden” effects depending on the type of tax (earned [wages, salaries, tips] or unearned [stocks, bonds]), level of income, and the tax-filing status of the taxpayer. Payroll taxes, used to fund Social Security, are regressive: that is, everyone pays the tax at the same rate regardless of their income up to the capped limit ($110,100 in 2012). Consumption or sales taxes are also regressive, as everyone pays the same tax on an item they purchase regardless of income level. Other taxes, such as the federal income tax, are progressive in the sense that individuals and families with higher incomes pay taxes at a higher rate than lower-wage workers.

    Technical feasibility:

    the availability and reliability of technology needed for policy implementation.

    Theories as explanations:

    account for an observed relationship between a policy or program and outcomes and might be morally neutral in that a moral position is not necessarily explicitly promoted.

    Theory-oriented tradition:

    this tradition of evaluation research is known by several names, including theory-based, theory-driven, or program evaluation theory, whose aim is to build upon knowledge acquired from the practice of program evaluation.

    Think tanks:

    organizations dedicated to problem-solving, interdisciplinary research, and to varying degrees advocacy, usually in such areas as technology, social or political strategy, or the military.

    Universal benefits:

    available to an entire population as a basic right and for the most part not means tested—that is, they are provided regardless of income levels of recipients, their families, or households.

    Value relevance:

    values that enter into the selection of problems investigators choose to examine.

    Value neutrality: (1)

    the normative injunction that persons of science should be governed by the ethos of science in their role as scientists, but not at all necessary in their role as citizens, and (2) the disjunction between the world of facts and the world of values, the impossibility of deriving “ought statements” from “is statements.”

    Value-distant evaluations:

    objectives-focused, experimental design, quasi-experimental designs, cost-benefit analyses, realistic evaluation, and theory-driven evaluation that rely predominantly on quantitatively oriented methodologies and analysis. They tend to focus on goals and outcomes but not on processes. They are most appropriate for summative evaluations.

    Values-relativistic evaluations:

    issues focused or responsive evaluation and dialogue focused or constructivist evaluation. These approaches, and values-prioritizing evaluations and values-positioned evaluations are incorporated in what is known as fourth generation evaluation, which emphasizes deliberation among stakeholders who have different values and perspectives about the nature and importance of the program, policy, and evaluation. They focus on issues and use an iterative dialogue process to identify and clarify issues and values stakeholders have about them.

    Values-positioned evaluations:

    include self-organization or empowerment evaluation, whose multiple roots have been traced in part to emancipatory or transformative research practices associated with liberation pedagogy, feminist inquiry, critical theory, and communicative action, and to evaluation research practices associated with participatory action research and collaboration research. Fostering self-determination is a defining feature. Other defining features include responsiveness to local needs and collaboration of trained evaluation personnel and practice-based decision makers working in partnership.

    Values-prioritizing evaluations:

    include decision focused or accountability oriented evaluation, utilization focused or pragmatic evaluation, and stakeholder interest focused or deliberative democratic evaluation. They rely on stakeholder input for purposes of pragmatic assessments about day-to-day program functioning or olicy implementation and of making specific decisions based on a continuous reassessment of priorities as circumstances warrant.

    Values-salient evaluations:

    grounded in what is deemed the practical philosophy approach to social inquiry, seeking to infuse moral discourse in evaluation practices. They encompass both descriptive and normative undertakings by analysts who engage and incorporate the perspectives and judgments of policy and program participants at all levels in the evaluation process.

    Verstehen:

    the “interpretive understanding” of human behavior, often contrasted with positivism.

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    About the Author

    Richard K. Caputo is professor of social policy and research at Yeshiva University's Wurzweiler School of Social Work in New York City. He has authored five books, including most recently U.S. Social Welfare Reform: Policy Transitions From 1981 to the Present (2011), and has edited two books, including most recently Basic Income Guarantee and Politics: International Experiences and Perspectives on the Viability of Income Guarantee (2012). He also serves as an associate editor of the Journal of Family and Economic Issues and is on the editorial board of Families in Society, Journal of Sociology & Social Welfare, Marriage & Family Review, Journal of Poverty, and Race, Gender & Class. He has many peer-reviewed articles and book chapters, including “Policy Analysis” in Social Policy & Social Justice (Sage, 2014). Between June of 2005 and May of 2013, he served as the director of the doctoral program in Social Welfare at Yeshiva University's Wurzweiler School of Social Work.


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