About SIS Practica:
This program is designed to give second-year master’s students real world experience in project management and consulting while preparing them for post-graduate careers.
Students work in teams with expert clients including U.S. and international government agencies, non-profit organizations and businesses to conduct policy and program analysis. Students draw on their substantial research, as well as qualitative and quantitative skills, to prepare final oral and written analysis and recommendations.
The practica are led by faculty mentors who hold class sessions weekly. Students also participate in hands-on workshops designed to enhance their project management, client relations, oral presentation, and writing skills. In addition to sharing the findings with their clients, students present their reports at the SIS Practica Symposium each semester.
Spring 2013 Practica:
Cross Cultural Collaboration in Global Virtual Teams: Disability, Development and Diplomacy
This Practicum will provide an exciting opportunity to use global virtual teams and cross cultural collaboration strategies to help leading organizations accomplish their strategic goals. Students in this Practicum Course will be able to choose from eight projects that will involve one of the following six organizations: 1) United Nations (Department of Economic and Social Affairs - DESA; and Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific - ESCAP); 2) World Bank (Global Partnership on Disability and Development - GPDD; and Global Forum on Law, Justice, and Development - GFLJD), 3) Asia Pacific Development Center on Disability – APCD, 4) International Council for Education of People with Visual Impairment, 5) International Foundation for Electoral Systems (ASEAN Network for General Election Network for Disability Access - AGENDA), and 6) InterNews
Professor: SIS Professor Derrick Cogburn’s research and teaching focus on global information and communication technology and socio-economic development; institutional mechanisms for global governance of ICTs; transnational policy networks and epistemic communities; and the socio-technical infrastructure for geographically distributed collaboration in knowledge work. He directs the Center for Research on Collaboratories and Technology Enhanced Learning Communities (Cotelco), an award-winning social science research collaboratory investigating the social and technical factors that influence geographically distributed collaborative knowledge work, particularly between developed and developing countries.
The Strategic Communications practicum will focus on communications problems having an international context. Projects for this practicum will include, as examples: 1) Communications and outreach plans for NGOs, such as plans for moving into a new region, a new functional area, or a new class of donors and beneficiaries; 2) Communications contingency plans for organizations, including disaster preparedness, crisis communications, and risk communications; 3) Intra-organizational communications plans to link geographically dispersed functions, open new branches and activities, and conduct internal education programs; and 4) Competitive analyses of other organizations and missions, new service development, and implementation plans. All projects will emphasis strong program management skills, organizational and competitive research. The organizations currently under consideration for the practicum include: The Inter-American Development Bank, Save the Children, Freedom House, Exoventure, Counterpart International, Delta Risk, International Relief & Development, The Information Technology & Innovation Fund, Center for Democracy and Technology, Intelligent Decision Partners LLC, and the Center for International Media Assistance.
Professor: Eric J. Novotny is the Senior Advisor for Democracy and Technology at the U.S. Agency for International Development. In this position, Dr. Novotny designs and manages a large portfolio of programs that use advanced information and communication technologies (ICTs) to stimulate economic growth, improve democratic processes, and reform governance policies in developing countries.
Public Diplomacy: A Wake-Up Call: How do Multilaterals Prepare, Survive and be Effective in the Early 21st Century
This practicum will explore how specific multilateral organizations thrive in a global context of many competing interest, that is, how they meet the challenges they face, externally, internally and perhaps amongst themselves. Students will conduct evaluations of specific multilaterals to determine how they demonstrate their value, deal with budget realities, justify the government funds, deal with members/non members, handle global pressures, present their vision, build their identity, meet public expectations – and identify the role of public diplomacy in Multilateral Organizations. Client organizations under consideration include: The UN Foundation, the US Global Leadership Coalition, the Council on Foreign Relations, and the Department of State.
Professor: The Hon. Jill A. Schuker is the current Head of the Washington Center for the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. Ms. Schuker, a United States national, brings to the OECD over 30 years of expertise in foreign policy, public diplomacy and communication strategy. She has worked across the globe with both governments and societies in transition on a range of civil society, social responsibility, governance, modernization, reform, policy, media, evaluation and leadership issues. She has also advised and liaised with highest-level officials in the public and private sectors, multi-lateral institutions, policy think-tanks and NGOs as a strategic and tactical counselor. Ms. Schuker served in several positions at the White House: as Special Assistant to President Clinton for National Security Affairs, as well as Senior Director for Public Affairs at the National Security Council and Deputy Communications Director. She has also served in senior positions at the Department of State, the U.S. mission to the U.N., the Commerce Department and on Capitol Hill. She is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Bretton Woods Committee, and a Board Member of the Atlantic Council of the United States.