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People Skills for Policy Analysts

5.0 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0878409006
ISBN-10: 0878409009
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Editorial Reviews

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"Old hands have learned these skills informally, but this clearly-written text will surely accelerate necessary learning about professional life in all policy-related fields."―Future Survey

Review

"Mintrom's seemingly simple proposition that, despite decades of attention to analytic technique and systematic thinking in the field of policy analysis, success in the policy process depends at least equally as much as 'people skills' is at once obvious and profound. Obvious in the sense that anyone who has ever experienced the policy process knows this to be true. Profound because it goes virtually unrecognized in the scholarly literature and conventional training in policy analysis. What those skills are and how best to cultivate them are the heart of this book, which makes it valuable reading for academics and practitioners alike. It's extremely instructive."―Daniel Mazmanian, C. Erwin and Ione Piper Dean and Professor, School of Policy, Planning, and Development, University of Southern California

"The policy/management dichotomy is dead. In fact, it has been dying for years out in the real world, everywhere except classes in public policy analysis. Mintrom's book is a crucial final corrective for the tendency to dismiss 'people skills' as something you can learn on the job, or don't need at all so long as you get your sums right. I would resist the idea that this book is a supplement to a 'real' policy analysis book. It stands on its own as a full partner in a policy education. Trying to train students in analysis without an equal emphasis on people skills is like sending them out on one leg to run a footrace."―Michael C. Munger, chair, Department of Political Science, Duke University

"Conveys a lot of useful advice about how to be a better and more successful analyst, both in terms of daily practice and careers. It was a pleasure to read."―David Weimer, professor of public affairs and political science, La Follette School of Public Affairs, University of Wisconsin-Madison

"People Skills for Policy Analysts is a book that needed to be written and now, needs to be read―not just by students and entry-level policy analysts, but by professors and veteran policy researchers as well. Students and new policy professionals will benefit from the clear suggestions for enhancing such activities as interviewing, giving presentations, and working in teams. And Michael Mintrom's point bears repeating for experienced policy analysts and others in the field: technical skills alone will not bring policy analysis beyond the discussion stage. With this book, Mintrom reminds us that it is important, even necessary, to cultivate analysts with the social skills to gather the myriad information and advice which lead to feasible policy solutions. The author's clarity of purpose and optimism for the future are truly refreshing."―Rachel Mosher-Williams, research associate, The Urban Institute

"This book is a delight to read. The text is straightforward, clean, and jargon-free. The organization is thoughtful throughout, though the book can be read as a set of valuable individual chapters. The discussion sections and exercises are interesting and helpful. Public policy programs do a fine job of teaching technical skills but we could do a better job of developing people skills. This book shows us how to do this."―Mark Carl Rom, associate professor of government and public policy, Georgetown Public Policy Institute

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Georgetown University Press (February 26, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0878409009
  • ISBN-13: 978-0878409006
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #979,150 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

By John T. Ayers on March 13, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I purchased this for my MPA program and it has been a great text. The author is easy to understand and read and doesn't bog you down with dull material. This is a very easy read and is easy to get through.
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Format: Paperback
In today's policy environment, a large part of the analyst's job is selling their ideas and analysis. Too often I've seen bad ideas and analysis win over good ideas just because the bad ideas had better marketing. This book helps you learn to present yourself and your ideas in a more persuasive fashion especially to decisionmakers who don't have the time and/or attention span to really understand an issue.
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The education of policy analyst is focused largely on the technical expertise required for the profession. In this book, aimed at advanced graduates, Michael Mintrom focuses on the interpersonal skills that policy analysts require. In doing so he fills an important gap in the education of policy analysts.

In the first chapter Michael Mintrom begins by exploring the role of the policy analyst and the policy making process, and then moves seamlessly into explaining why having good people skills is also important for policy analysts. In the subsequent chapters he examines how policy analysts can improve their interpersonal skills. The chapters cover: how analysts can improve how they manage their resources, building expert knowledge, interviewing informants, giving presentations, working in teams, facilitating meetings, writing for multiple audiences, conflict management, professional networking and pursuing excellence.

The book is designed so you can read it as a whole or read individual chapters. At the end of each chapter there is a summary of the key points, thought provoking exercises and recommendations for further reading.

This book is a must have for anyone training to be policy analyst and a valuable resource for practicing policy analysts.
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I love this book
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