Whether learners work in government, business, nonprofits, activism, entrepreneurship, or community organization, effective leaders are constantly working on policies that address pressing public problems. In Policy Design and Delivery, created by Michael Walton, senior lecturer in public policy at Harvard Kennedy School, in concert with a team of the School’s learning designers, you can acquire the knowledge to analyze, design, and recommend policies to effect change in your community.

“I have found that the faculty, the guest speakers, and the diversity of the students have enriched my learning experience beyond my expectations.”

– Jill Wierbicki Abrahams, PLC Learner

Program Highlights:

  • Examine contemporary and real policy challenges in global settings and develop systematic methods to craft and implement solutions to your own policy challenge.
  • Participate in 100 percent online coursework, designed to fit into your busy life, featuring learning modules, case studies, and structured group activities.
  • Qualify for a potential pathway to the Harvard Kennedy School’s MC/MPA Program.

Policy is an array of actions designed to create the type of world in which we want to live. In Policy Design and Delivery, leaders from across the world learn to see policymaking as a process of clearly defining a problem and working to understand what policies will help create real change as policies are implemented and scaled. Not all participants need to have a background in policymaking, but the courses are designed for professionals with a minimum of five years of experience and a commitment to the public good. Participation in the program requires 10 to 12 hours per week dedicated to reading, viewing multimedia materials, participating in group learning activities and discussions with peers, and completing interactive assignments.

Policy Design and Delivery comprises two courses: A and B. Learners must take the A Course before they take the B Course. Please see a list of the learning outcomes per course below.

Public Policy A: A Systematic Approach

  • Acquire the ability to articulate the values behind policy design decisions
  • Analyze the causes and sub-causes of policy problems and make informed policy recommendations based on analysis
  • Evaluate policy solutions for strategic alignment across technical, political, and organizational dynamics
  • Develop skills to diagram root causes, map theories of change, and analyze stakeholders of policy decisions
  • Develop skills to make policy recommendations

Policy Design and Delivery B: Innovation and Scaling

  • Recognize and adapt to uncertainty in implementing policy designs
  • Build innovative policy solutions for change within dynamic systems
  • Develop skills to test and iterate solutions within a system
  • Manage the political and organizational aspects of innovation and scaling

“Through seriously trying to understand the nature of problems, how to design policy, and, most of all, how to implement policy effectively, we can effect change for a better world.”

— Michael Walton

Faculty Lead

Michael Walton

Michael Walton
Faculty Lead, Policy Design and Delivery, PLC
Senior Lecturer in Public Policy
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Guest Lecturers

The following are faculty guests in the Policy Design and Delivery courses:

Course A

Course B

Who Should Take These Courses?

These courses are designed for individuals seeking to drive change, innovation, and scaling in the policy space. Learners who seek the skills to better navigate and impact nuanced landscapes in government, business, and communities will leave with a tool set that will help them to design and implement effective policies.

Interested in learning more about the Public Leadership Credential from Harvard Kennedy School?

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