PPOL 073
Public Policy Analytical Methods for Scientists, Engineers, and Health Professionals: Understanding and Evaluating Benefit-Cost, Cost-Effectiveness, and Risk Analysis

Benefit-cost analysis, cost-effectiveness analysis, and risk analysis are quantitative techniques used to support the assessment of effectiveness, efficiency and equity in the policy analysis process.  More than any other analytical technique they are critical in policymaker decision-making as benefit-cost is required by executive orders or regulations and risk-based regulations and enforcement activities -- particularly those related to the environment, health, worker safety, transportation, privacy/security, and energy policy.

Learning Objectives:

In this “learn by doing” class, students will enhance their understanding of:

·What are benefit-cost analysis (BCA), cost-effectiveness analysis (CEA), and risk analysis (RA) and why are they important to program evaluation and policy analysis

  • The steps and methods used to conduct BCA, CEA, and RA, including sources of information, and sensitivity analysis.
  • Communicating the results of BCA, CEA, and RA, and how this related to policymaker decisions.
  • Understanding the difference between a good and poor BCA, CEA, and RA