PAP-10306 Public Administration and Policy Making


Credits 6.00

Teaching methodContact hours
Group work5
Independent study
Course coordinator(s)dr. GR Biesbroek
Lecturer(s)dr. GR Biesbroek
prof. dr. ir. CJAM Termeer
Examiner(s)dr. GR Biesbroek
prof. dr. ir. CJAM Termeer

Language of instruction:


Continuation courses:

PAP-30806 Governance and policy change; PAP-21806 European Union institutions and policies; FNP-31806 Forest and Nature Policy: Theoretical Perspectives; PAP-30306 Designing Innovative Governance Arrangements


People expect a lot of 'government' or of 'policy' when it comes to dealing with pressing societal problems like climate change, sustainable agro-food chains, economic reforms or public health services. But what are the possibilities for governmental organisations to intervene in complex societal processes? How do bureaucracies, politics and policymaking in the contemporary network society work? What are the main theories about the organisation and management of public institutions? And what does it mean that public organizations are dependent on companies and citizens who have considerable resources at their disposal, follow their own goals and are not just subject to regulation but try to influence society themselves? This course provides basic knowledge about public institutions and discusses the main themes, concepts and tools of public administration, politics and policy making.

Learning outcomes:

After successful completion of this course students are expected to be able to:
- understand and explain the core concepts and theories of public administration including management and organisation, policy and decision making, steering instruments, and governance;
- apply the concepts and analytical tools of public administration to real-life cases in the life science domains;
- understand the basic characteristics of public institutions and bureaucracies across the world
- understand and explain the way things happen in the real world of governmental organisations and policy processes.


- interactive lectures based on background reading;
- tutorials and exercises with public administration tools and instruments;
- application of theoretical and methodological insights in simulated policy game(s).


- tutorial assignment (pass/fail);
- individual assignment (10%);
- analysis of the simulation game (10%);
- group presentation (10%);
- written exam (70%).
Students need to obtain a minimum mark of 5.5 for both the exam and the average of the assignments to pass the course.


Bovens, M.A.P.; Hart. []. (2012). Openbaar Bestuur: Beleid, Organisatie en Politiek. 8th ed. 392p. ISBN 9789013100136. Breeman G.E., van Noort, W.J. en M.R. Rutgers (2016) De bestuurlijke kaart van Nederland: het openbaar bestuur en zijn omgeving in nationaal en internationaal perspectief, 6e druk, Coutinho: Bussum. 224p. ISBN 9789046905241.

Compulsory for: BEBEconomics and GovernanceBSc5AF