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Department of Public Administration and Policy

Public Administration and Policy Concentrations

Master of Public Administration | Master of Public Policy

Students in the MPA and MPP programs may gain valuable expertise in critical areas that relate to individual career goals. Some students select established concentrations while others assemble courses around their own needs.


Master of Public Administration

Applied Politics

The Applied Politics concentration incorporates two fields offered through the school’s Department of Government. The first field covers politics, campaign management, and lobbying and serves students aiming to involve themselves as managers in the effort to influence the course of government through the electoral or political process. The second field encourages students to think strategically about the challenges confronted by policymakers concerned with women’s issues by addressing women, public policy, and political leadership.

International Management

The international management concentration helps students understand the nature of management responsibilities that bridge different cultures, including those involving foreign relations, international organizations (including NGOs), and social and economic development.

Nonprofit Management

This concentration educates students in the many administrative challenges faced by small community-based or large professionalized organizations in today’s “networked economy” where organizations increasingly interact, compete, and collaborate with other service providers, policy-makers and regulators.

Arts Management: This focus prepares students for the administrative work associated with the presentation of music, theater, and other arts.

Policy Analysis

By merging required MPA management courses with selected courses from MPP degree, this concentration combines knowledge about the administrative functions essential to policy analysis with the skills necessary to conduct the actual studies.

Policy and Management

This concentration combines the management and leadership strengths of the MPA program with policy courses for students interested in general policy or a particular policy area.

  • Social Policy: This focus teaches students how to utilize governmental and nongovernmental tools to address challenges imposed by poverty, hunger, educational deficiencies, unemployment, and discrimination.
  • Health Policy: This focus allows students to gain an appreciation for the issues confronting policymakers and analysts working on health and related issues.
  • Environmental Policy: This focus allows students to gain an appreciation for the issues confronting policymakers and analysts working on environmental issues.
  • Science and Technology: This focus allows students to gain an appreciation for the issues confronting policymakers and analysts working on scientific and technological issues.

Public Financial Management

The financial management concentration helps to prepare students for the many responsibilities involved with the management of public programs, operations and funds.

Public Management

This concentration strengthens the knowledge and skills of people called upon to work as line managers or administrative support staff in public service organizations.

  • Management Consulting: This focus helps students exercise the responsibilities associated with management consulting and institutional change.
  • Human Resources: This focus helps students to understand the strategic role of human resource planning, develop skills to prepare employees for change, and improve management and employee relationships.

State and Local Administration

The State and Local Management concentration prepares students for the political and administrative intricacies of delivering public services in an increasingly intergovernmental context.



Master of Public Policy

Advanced Policy Analysis

Students who wish to work as program evaluators or policy analysts may complete a set of courses leading to a Certificate in Policy Analysis. Essentially, this specialization encourages students to take more than the single course in applied policy analysis required of all MPP students.

Applied Politics

The Applied Politics concentration incorporates two fields offered through the school’s Department of Government. The first field covers politics, campaign management, and lobbying and serves students aiming to involve themselves as managers in the effort to influence the course of government through the electoral or political process. The second field encourages students to think strategically about the challenges confronted by policymakers concerned with women’s issues by addressing women, public policy, and political leadership.

Comparative Public Policy

The concentration focuses on international security policy and the manner in which different countries address common domestic policies such as health, education, and social services.

Crime, Public Law and Policy

This concentration addresses the needs of students wishing to gain an understanding of the legal issues that policymakers and analysts encounter within the area of criminal justice and the field of legal studies.

Health Policy

The health policy concentration allows students to gain an appreciation for the issues confronting policymakers and analysts working on health and related issues in the U.S. and abroad.

International Development

This concentration serves students interested in gaining an appreciation for the challenges facing policymakers and analysts working on global issues and those affecting the developing world.

Nonprofit Policy, Management and Leadership

This concentration addresses the needs of students wishing to focus on the strategic organizational challenges that policymakers and analysts confront when using nonprofit organizations to implement public policy.

Public Financial Management

This concentration is designed for students wishing to understand the manner in which efforts to finance public sector activities affects public policy. The concentration combines models of public sector economics, including mechanisms of public choice, service pricing, taxation and expenditure structures, with economic analytic frameworks to understand mechanisms available for influencing public behavior and likely outcomes of alternative tax, expenditure and regulatory policy options.

Public Management

Students who wish to combine their study of public policy with a deeper understanding of public administration have the opportunity to take a selection of management courses from the MPA degree. Such courses amplify lessons contained in the required MPP course on Organizational Analysis by examining issues that affect the implementation of public policies.

Science, Technology and Environmental Policy

This concentration allows students to gain an appreciation for the issues confronting policymakers and analysts working on scientific, technological, and environmental issues in the U.S. and abroad.

Social Policy

The social policy concentration teaches students how to utilize governmental and nongovernmental tools to address challenges imposed by poverty, hunger, educational deficiencies, unemployment, and discrimination.