Public policy research and teaching in the current context

On 4 April 2013, UEB’s Faculty of Development Economics held a seminar entitled “Public policy research and teaching in the current context” in order to exchange and consult experts’ opinions related to the studying and teaching of public policy.

Attending to the seminar were lecturers of the faculty, representatives of research institutes and centers and other universities with Public policy training programs. Dr. Bui Dai Dzung - Head of the faculty’s Department of Public Policy was the chairman of the seminar.
Opening the seminar, Dr. Bui Dai Dzung made a speech on Some social needs and actually specialized training of the public policy in the Faculty of Development Economics. Presentation provided not only the basic and the most common knowledge on public policy but also some examples of present debatable policies and their causes.
In recent years, the planning and implementation of public policy in Vietnam had several controversial issues and raised a dispute in society. One of the causes related to the quality of research and training in public policy in Vietnam. Currently, Vietnam had some training programs in public policy (both master’s and bachelor’s degrees), however, compared with the social needs, the response is still relatively modest.
Faculty of Development Economics (VNU-UEB) has implemented four-year bachelor training programs on Development Economics, including in-depth public policy and oriented program on master’s degree of public policy. Therefore, the seminar was expected to receive experts’ feedback in order to improve the structure and contents of an intensive training program in public policy, as well as experience in developing master’s programs, and the knowledge criteria between public policy master and bachelor degree.
At the seminar, MA. Le Van Hoa - Deputy Head of Department of Public Policy (National Academy of Public Administration) presented specific contents of bachelor’s training programs of Public Policy in National Academy of Public Administration, including basic building and goals of the program, the applied courses. He also shared more about the process of developing training programs and major-oriented public policy in National Academy of Public Administration.

Dr. Nguyen Quoc Viet presented at seminar

Following the program, Dr. Nguyen Quoc Viet - Associate Dean of Faculty of Development Economics had a presentation on The development of graduate training programs of Department of Public Policy - Faculty of Development Economics. After comparing postgraduate training curriculums in public policy in several countries and Vietnam, he has analyzed the legal bases and practical needs as well as conditions of Faculty of Development Economics in developing master training program in Public Policy.
Accordingly, Dr. Viet also proposed fundamental components of the master program in Public Policy (MPP) on the basis: expected subjects, enrollment subject and forms… In a comprehensive review, the Faculty of Development Economics had the capability in general principles and other requirements related to the rules, lecturers… in the guidelines of Vietnam National University, Ha Noi.
Exchanging at seminar, participants agreed that the reports’ quality was high and remarkable. They also agreed on the launching of postgraduate training programs of Faculty of Development Economics. The program would be highly interdisciplinary and meet the needs of society.
It is necessary to construct Public Policy Code. Before construction, determining clearly oriented program is to study and practice, whose learning objects are, however. In the long term, how the program design can easily be adjusted if there will be changed in regulations the program, said Dr. Phi Manh Hong.
In the program’s draft, he also comments: “It would take time for the faculty to get clear description of the subject have more subjects in more sectors, divide into two kinds of imperative and elective subjects to become flexible in teaching; require courses to provide skills such as policy analysis, sociological surveys, make questionnaires… so they can be applied in the process of working later".
Some comments also discuss the practical experiences of bachelor’s and master’s programs in Public Policy at some universities and academies. Developing programs required full advantage to promote strength, and it was necessary to refer foreign programs and make use of them in Vietnamese context. On the other hand, the construction of any program should also identify learners and ensure the curriculum to respond the learners’ needs and ability. The majority of participants agreed with the idea: building a master’s program in public policy according to the research associated with the practice.
After a half of hard-working day, the seminar closed with informative and useful experience in research and teaching public policy at both the undergraduate and graduate systems.
Making speech at the conference, on behalf of VNU-UEB, Faculty of Development Economics, Dr. Vu Quoc Huy - Faculty’s Dean thanked the presentations and the opinions of experts, representatives. The experts’ sharing has somewhat strengthened and tightened research networks, enhanced teaching capacity and research in public policy, and suggested directions for further development for Department of Public Policy in particular and Faculty of Development Economics in general.

Hoa Hanh - Thanh Nhan

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