Policy Analysis in International Affairs
Policy is nothing but a careful system of rules to guide future actions and achieve reasonable outcomes. A policy is typically an executive resolution, which is formally adopted as a rule or procedure by a governing body usually at an institute of higher learning. In addition, policies may also be formally adopted by members of the legislature for reasons of urgency, or as guidelines for their members. The practice of formulating a policy often continues into the tenure of senior administrators. It is common for former cabinet secretaries to serve as policy makers in large companies.
The policy has two aspects: the process by which it gets formulated and its implications. Policy makers need to take into account issues such as appropriateness of the policy, the desirability of the policy, and the legitimacy of the processes involved before formally adopting it. Public policy can have a significant influence on the functioning of the society as a whole. However, policy-making needs to be taken very seriously. Policy-making is essentially a decision-making process, which involves the process of identifying and assessing the issues that require attention, forming a view as to how things should be, coming up with a solution, designing the machinery to carry out the solution, testing the effectiveness of the solution, and finally getting it implemented into law. Policy-making thus involves many abstract and real concepts, including economic, social, technological, legal, political and ethical theories.
Policy-making thus involves several conceptualizations and cross- disciplinary reasoning, as it requires an effort to synthesize previous inputs into a more meaningful policy. Policy-making thus is an interactive exercise, which implies that different theoretical perspectives can help shape a common perspective on policy implementation. Although the process may be tedious and time-consuming, it has been found to have lasting effects on public policy and its unintended consequences.
Policy-making thus is not a static entity but a dynamic one, which constantly undergo change. Policy-making therefore is an interactive process in which different public policy makers come together to discuss and draft laws, rules, policies, and guidelines, review their implementation, and evaluate their performance. Policy-making therefore involves several different processes that all together constitute the policy cycle. Policy-making is thus a dynamic and multidimensional process. The main aim of policy-making is to lay down principles and institutions that can guide the way society as a whole .
Policy-making thus involves two major processes; that is, determining the policy-makers and their activities, and ensuring that these activities occur. Policy-making thus is not an exact science; rather, it is highly subjective in nature, taking into account various different public policies as well as societal conditions. Policy-makers can affect public policy in a number of ways; for instance, they can adopt certain types of policies, create certain types of regulatory bodies, issue certain types of rule, set up certain types of procedures, make use of certain types of technology, use certain types of media, develop certain types of documents, issue certain types of leaflets, issue certain types of newsletters, or participate in certain types of forums. These ways of public policymaking also have undesirable effects; for instance, adopting certain types of regulations can have adverse environmental effects. A certain type of governmental policy, for instance, may be adopted for the protection of the environment; yet, adopting such a policy could have adverse effects on the economy, for instance, making tourism, construction, and other businesses unprofitable.
Policy analysis is thus an important process of the study of public policy. Policy analysis seeks to explain how public policies affect the world as a whole. Public policies can affect private citizens as well as public organizations. Policy analysis thus is used to explain various issues in international affairs. In international relations, policy analysis also aims to explain how different public policies can affect the various aspects of world politics and international business.