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DEVELOPMENT AND APPLICATION OF A METHODOLOGY FOR POLICY DESIGN: NEW DIRECTIONS FOR THE ROLE OF GOVERNMENTAL REGULATION IN UNIVERSITY AFFAIRS

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posted on 2023-09-06, 03:55 authored by Jeanne Morris Murray

The dissertation includes the development and application of a futures methodology for capturing and using information from experts to create scenarios for desirable futures for policy problem areas. The methodology also includes the development and demonstration of a set of procedures for evolution toward these futures. The cybernetic characteristics of the methodology, models, and a research demonstration project provide for flexibility in refining metapolicies and scenarios over time. Information transfer models incorporate traditional cybernetic feedback loops in order to enable the system to initiate and respond to changes. The models also incorporate Maruyama's second cybernetics for deviation amplification, so that new creative and innovative metapolicies and scenario elements can be included in the future whenever they are appropriate or necessary. The work contains a description and results of a research project conducted to demonstrate the concepts presented in the methodology. The topic selected for investigation was the government/university relation. The design of a set of scenarios for a desirable future for this relation and a set of metapolicies for evolution toward it were based on cybernetic interviews with forty-four university administrators at the policy level. The results of the interviews are organized according to the matrix arrangement developed in the methodology. Elements of qualitative information are displayed in an easily assimilated and interpreted planar representation of three-dimensonal space with rectangular hyperplane. This organized format is a concept which can be used to provide decision makers with ordered, semantic and pragmatic information. It makes possible the inclusion of effective qualitative inputs into the decision-making processes in the design of metapolicies directed toward improving policy problem areas. Both the methodology and research incorporate all three of George Morris's informational aspects--syntactics, semantics, and pragmatics. However, in this work, emphasis is placed on semantics and pragmatics as they interface with the post-classical policy science paradigm of Christakis. Throughout the work, values such as credibility, trust, integrity, and cooperation surface repeatedly: In the historical and philosophical material in Chapter I; in the post-classical policy science paradigm of Christakis; in the information transfer models; in the chapter on regulation; in the interview summaries which reflect the beliefs and values of university administrators; in the matrices derived from the summaries; and in the final chapter on conclusions. The procedures developed for the methodology, and applied in the research section of the dissertation, provide for the cooperation and participation of the regulated (the university administrators) in the design of legislative metapolicies from which regulations are intended to be derived. This cooperative effort in metapolicy design could provide the basis for the desirable futures-creative for the government/university relation. The methodology is of general applicability in the design of metapolicies for policy problem areas.

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Publisher

American University

Language

English

Notes

Ph.D. American University 1980.

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http://hdl.handle.net/1961/thesesdissertations:938

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application/pdf

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Part of thesis digitization project, awaiting processing.

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