Research paper online: Policy Analysis as a Subfield of Political Science

The need to solve specific problems in politics, finding the most appropriate ways for people and technology goals, suggests a particular approach to the understanding and study of political phenomena. In contrast to the approach inherent in the theoretical political science, which seeks the ways to identify the essential features and characteristics of political events, to reveal their most fundamental communication and relationships, to justify the trends and patterns of development, this approach of policy analysis is aimed at solving practical problems and has its own specifics. Thus, thinking about policy analysis as a subfield of political science, we can realize that policy analysis is a set of different scientific methods, which help to study specific political events and political situation, creating assumptions about their possible development and adoption of the competent political decisions. Exactly a professional application of policy analysis is able to make a qualitative revolution in political decision-making, which is one of the main goals of applied political science.

We can also emphasize that the use of policy analysis is necessary for all actors of the political process, but it is particularly important for the use of power structures because their decisions have the greatest impact on the political process. In such a way, we can define the concept of “policy analysis” as the analytic-synthetic process, which combines the dismemberment of the object into its component parts and the connection of these parts on a new cognitive level.

Assessing the analysis procedure with a slightly different point of view, we can establish that it is primarily a defined set of techniques and methods of information processing. Anderson (1997) mentioned that the ”˜output’ of this transformation is always a kind of new knowledge. The starting point, the ”˜impetus’ for the implementation of the analysis procedure can be considered a problem ”“ something that needs a decision, a contradiction that must be overcome. The nature of the problem is always the main factor determining the resulting knowledge.

Thus, the concept of “analysis” (in the most general form) is the conversion of information to gain new knowledge aimed at solving specific problems. However, we consider not just an abstract “analysis,” but policy analysis, which deals with the processes of power distribution. To continue, policy analysis is particularly applied discipline with its own subject field and other features. However, it appears and comes out as a common basis for all researches in applied subdisciplines. Thereby, if in a broad sense, this concept can be used to refer to all research policy, in a narrow, more special sense, policy analysis is seen as an applied discipline, which formulates the main impeding subjectivism and arbitrariness of the requirements of the study of specific problems, finds their most appropriate solutions and determinations of the necessary technological tools and techniques of activity.

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