2015-2016 Graduate Bulletin 
    Aug 05, 2020  
2015-2016 Graduate Bulletin [Archived Bulletin]

DPA 8600 - Strategic Planning and Decision Making in the Public Sector

The first half of the course is a survey of strategic planning, to include: organization of the planning process; the mission statement; analysis of environmental strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats (SWOT analysis); and identifying strategic issues or goals. The effectiveness of strategic planning in government is also examined. Students will examine strategic plans and work in teams on planning exercises. As strategic planning should lead to decision making in an organization, the second half of the course is on normative and behavioral decision making. Several normative models of decision making are introduced and contrasted with findings from psychological research and behavioral decision theory on how individuals and groups make decisions in practice. Research shows that people often do not think in the best way or make the best decisions to reach their own goals. Topics include utility theory, expert systems, Kohlberg’s stages of moral thinking, and the effectiveness of individual versus group decision making. Psychological biases are shown to occur in probability estimation, hypothesis testing, preference reversals, framing effects, and risk avoidance. Doctoral students will lead discussions and write papers on assigned topics.

Credits: 4