Curriculum

Public administration can be broadly described as the development, implementation and study of branches of public policy, at the levels of the state and the municipalities. The CBGL course deals with public administration at the level of the state. The pursuit of the public good by ensuring a well-run, fair, and effective public service and by enhancing civil society are some of the goals of the field. Public administration is carried out by public servants who work in ministries and agencies, at all levels of government, and perform a wide range of tasks. Public administrators collect and analyze data, monitor budgets, draft legislation, develop policy, and execute legally mandated government activities. Public administrators serve in many roles,  ranging from "front-line" positions serving the public (e.g., peace officers, tax collectors, border guards); administrators (e.g., social insurance benefit coordinators); analysts (e.g., policy analysts); and managers and executives of government ministries  and agencies.

To make sure that the actual PA solutions are really the best – so that citizens/clients get full value for the tax money paid up – a lot of prerequisites must be in place in the legislative and policy-making processes of the ministries and in the budget planning, execution and control systems of the agencies.

Most public policy issues have an economic dimension, and this module provides an overview of some basic concepts used in applied micro-economic analysis to come to grips with that dimension: marginal cost; different pricing systems for public services; the basic mechanisms that underpin market systems; problems with public goods. There is also a brief discussion of key aspects of domestic economic and budget policy, as well as important dynamics in the current work economy and the pressures they create on domestic governments.

The module goes into greater depth on the more technically demanding aspects of cost-benefit analysis (CBA). Some of the conceptual economic underpinnings of CBA are explored (e.g., opportunity cost, willingness-to-pay, discount rates, and  revealed pricing), with practical examples drawn from different spheres to illustrate how CBA varies in effectiveness depending on the policy area and the outcomes being pursued.

This module identifies some critical aspects of public policy development as for example, policy coordination, consistency and basic standards of evaluation as well as the generic steps in the process.
Public policy is what the government does - and does not. It is the reaction to problems and opportunities. Public policy is as the word inclines – public. A government needs to have public policy mechanism in place and to adopt best practice. The policy process is open, to the public and decisions should be taken in a competing interest of the citizens.
The first step is to identify relevant problems and formulate effective solutions through qualified public-policy planning analysis. This means applying reliable methods of investigation, securing the relevant background information and formulating alternative recommendations. The participants themselves will carry out  policy planning studies as part of the course.

During this module the participating fellows will be working with their policy planning papers. Once the subjects of these papers have been carefully selected participants/authors will be assisted at recurring module seminars, where the fellows will be able get guidance through lectures and a dialogue on how to proceed with their analytical, writing processes. This intensive assistance will, on a continuing basis, be complemented by advice from mentors in the GFSIS and SIPU International-teams. When a paper has been ‘quality-cleared” and become increasingly ready for ‘action’ a template for a basic, generic form of policy communication will also be provided. This module will look at the advisory process from the perspective of the consumers of policy information. It will analyse the different types of audiences to which policy communication should be addressed, what their needs are, and how one should communicate policy advice strategically in an environment crowded with public agencies, international organizations and NGOs.

Through this module the participants will learn how to write academic research papers (or articles) in Georgian, using relevant and appropriate instruments. More specifically, they will be taught how to create references and an annexed bibliography, and what are the phrases and words that are used /not used in this type of work. Important complementary subjects will be how one can avoid morphological, syntactical and verbal mistakes that are often made.

This module focuses on research design methods that are directly relevant to public-policy planning. It assumes that policy-oriented research begins with various premises, from more academic research designs, though with a focus on real-world problems and with a view to the design of corollary intervention or action programmes. Different techniques used in the design of surveys, focus groups and evidence gathering are also discussed.

The consequences of public policy actions, as well as the initial problems that drive those policies and actions, often differ fundamentally both between women and men of equal cultural background and between women – and men – of different cultural backgrounds, of different age etcetera. Understanding these differences, and their roots in socio-economic and cultural factors, is a key ingredient of effective public policy analysis, planning and implementation. This module will provide an overview of the key approaches in gender-and-diversity-based analysis, as well as a review of international standards in the field.

A project is a series of activities aimed at bringing about clearly specified objectives within a defined time-period and with a defined budget.
The word project comes from the Latin verb of projicere, which means to throw forward. This could be interpreted as throwing forward suggestions, solutions, or improvements, in order to change what is perceived as a problem. Every project is a working tool for change, aimed to achieve a specific and clearly defined result. If there is no need for change, there is no need for a project! Every project has a clear start, a period of implementation, and a clear end.
The participants will get a brief introduction to the development of PCM (project cycle management) and the various steps of the process and techniques.

The module provides an overview of the Georgian legal system, particularly those aspects that are immediately relevant to policy-making and public administration. Topics include: the Georgian constitutional system, administrative law and the division of responsibilities between state and sub-state/regional and municipal bodies and legal requirements for the promulgation of laws and decrees.

This module concentrates on Georgian state-level, institutional structures such as parliament, the executive, the Cabinet with its ministries and agencies. As well, there is an examination of policy and administrative processes within the context of those institutions. The focus is practical, so that participants can develop an appreciation of the interface between institutions and policy development processes.

Programme – and project – evaluation refers to events that have already taken place. Its purpose is to measure the results – outputs, outcomes and impacts – of activities planned and carried out by the public administration. However, it is not primarily a platform for criticizing those who carried out the activities, but rather to focus on the problems encountered and find remedies
Result-based management and budgeting are vital parts in programme evaluation. These two concepts have a long history and have had many names. Since then it has appeared in a variety of more or less developed formats under names such as performance management,, logical framework approach, operational logics etc. It also has strong links with 0-based budgeting and other schools of planning, management and budgeting.
This module will present an overview of the main types of program evaluation. The module also reviews the history of evaluation as a profession.  Short, practical exercises provide a hands-on appreciation of more abstract points.

The issue of access to public information has at least two sides, one relating to the rights of citizens, the other referring to the rights and obligations of public servants to use and to not give out (between them), respectively, public information. This module focuses on the latter, but will touch also upon the former.
The quality, quantity and accessibility of PA-relevant public information in Georgia is briefly mapped and discussed, and compared with that of a typical EU-country.
Who is allowed – and who is not allowed – to ask for, and get, the information asked for? Why and why not: what has to do with legal rules and what with administrative traditions (e.g. having to ask your next higher boss first)? What are the incentives – and disincentives – among public servants to deliver public information asked for to other public servants? A closer look will be taken at the formal rules for classification of public information.
The legal dimension vs. ethics. How could a public service be developed where public servants serve and help each other with relevant information instead of saving pieces of vital information in their own hand as a bargaining resource for future exchanges of information?
This module also provides a practical introduction to ethics in public policy and administration. It reviews key concepts in public sector ethics (e.g., the idea of public values, democratic values) from several perspectives. It provides a list of commonly agreed values that should be reflected in the behaviour of individual public servants. It also reviews the key elements of a “public service ethics and values system” and of what institutions and processes it consists. The module also reviews international standards and agreements on public sector ethics.

The Trade Policy (TP) module provides an introduction to the fundamental principles of modern trade policy with an emphasis on its applications. In particular, the training course aims at equipping students with the basic knowledge of the key concepts of trade policy, such as exports, imports and trade balance, the role of the trade balance in the balance of payments. The course also examines current issues in trade policy reform and institutions, the role and functions of the World Trade Organization (WTO) and Georgia’s WTO membership. Special attention is given to analyzing the effects of various policy instruments and approaches, protectionism and free trade regime and free economic zones. This module should appeal to students with interests in economic policy as well as to those with no previous background in economics.

This module will start by presenting the general logic of  EU’s institutional structure, including its historical development. Current challenges and reform plans will be touched upon already at the beginning.
The following issue will be the division of competences within the EU. This will be viewed against the background of the ’pillar system’ and its planned reformation. What is the nature of EU’s primary and secondary legislation in relation to the domestic legislation of a member state? Who has the right to take initiatives and in what common policy areas?
After this the module will offer a more detailed description and analysis of the process through which Estonian legislation was harmonised with that of the EU (‘acquis communautaire’), of  the vital role of the Ministry of Justice and of the relationship between this ministry and the Cabinet. Throughout, the powers and functioning of the main EU institutions will be highlighted: The European Commission, the EU Council of Ministers, the European Council and the European Parliament.

This module will start by presenting the general logic of the EU institutional structure, including its historical development. The following issue will be the division of competences within the EU, against the background of the 'pillar system'. What is the nature of EU's primary and secondary legislation in relation to the domestic legislation of the member state?

Next is a more detailed description and analysis of the powers and functioning of the main EU institutions: The European Commission, the EU Council of Ministers, the European Council and the European Parliament, the decision-making and voting procedures.

Does the EU work? Which is the impact of the enlargement on the decision-making of EU institutions? This will be followed up by a discussion about the possible institutional reforms after the Lisbon Treaty.

The negotiation skills module will familiarize participants with the main mechanisms of international negotiations which will include examining of the key elements in the planning and conducting of political negotiation, identifying key skills required to carry out political negotiation and chair such negotiations effectively and to fortify this knowledge through practical exercises.
Questions such as, what makes a good negotiator and what are the principles of successful negotiation, will be asked. These lectures serve to provide a coherent framework within which identifying and developing individual skills and providing practical advice will assist participants in preparing for the succeeding exercises. Complementary subject areas will be bilateral negotiations, the challenge of chairing, (which will consider the dynamics of negotiation from the point of view of the person in command of the process) and multilateral negotiations.
At a concluding seminar the question will be put: Does the EU work? An analysis will be presented of the impact of the enlargement on the decision-making of EU institutions. This will be followed up by a discussion about the possible institutional reforms after the Lisbon Treaty.

© 2017 Georgian Foundation For Strategic and International Studies. All Rights Reserved.