Fall 2009 — MW 12:30-13:45
This course examines how political institutions affect public policy outcomes. It answers such questions as why incumbents choose one policy over another, whose preferences matter for policy outcomes, and how institutions interact to structure the incentives and capabilities of policymakers. As a way of introduction, we begin with the topics of preference formation and collective action, which are extremely important for understanding a series of organizational issues. Then we concentrate our attention on the analysis of institutions: constitutional structure, the bureaucracy, electoral rules, and the party system.