Parliamentary Research & IT

This course provides an introduction role of research and policy analysis in the legislative process, and demonstrates how parliamentary staff can contribute effectively to that process.

The course begins with an overview of the role of staff in the formulation of policy and legislative proposals, highlighting various staff functions and how they contribute to policy and legislative development, the organization of staff services, internal and external relations to which staff research and analysis is vital, and a detailed examination of how staff can best support the work of parliamentary committees. Next, the course focuses on the particulars of research and policy analysis, highlighting the differences in purposes and methods between legislative and academic research and proper staff preparation for policy analysis work. This is followed by an in-depth examination of various types of policy analysis, the role of the parliamentary policy analyst, the analytic process, and six critical steps necessary for useful policy analysis in a legislative environment. The final phase of the course addresses the effective use of information in parliaments and proper presentation for legislative audiences/consumers; the value of objective information to legislators and other staff, as well as particular value and uses of partisan information, and recommendations on writing for legislators.

Dates:

  • July 9 - August 17, 2018

Location: Online


Course Objectives

Upon completion of this course, you should be able to:

  • Appreciate the role of parliamentary staff in policy formulation and legislative development
  • Explain the critical steps for useful policy analysis in a legislative environment
  • Highlight the differences between parliamentary  and academic  research
  • Understand good research practice in parliaments, such as sources of information networking inside and outside the parliament, drafting for parliamentary research, and the value of oral briefings
  • Understand the role of information management in parliamentary business
  • Review encryption and security techniques that will protect sensitive parliamentary information
  • Explore outreach techniques that will help make parliamentary work an integral part of national life, including the use of web sites, social media, and simulated parliaments for students and the public

Topics  Covered

  • The role of staff in the formulation of policy and legislative proposals
  • Research and policy analysis
  • Various types of policy analysis
  • The role of the parliamentary policy analyst
  • The analytic process
  • Six critical steps necessary for useful policy analysis in a legislative environment.
  • The effective use of information in parliaments
  • Proper presentation for legislative audiences and consumers.
  • The value of objective information to legislators and other staff
  • The particular value and uses of partisan information
  • Recommendations on writing for legislators.

Registration

This course is part of the Professional Development Certificate in Parliamentary Management. For more information, click here.

If you wish to register for an individual course without being admitted to the program, please contact us at parl.scs [at] mcgill.ca.


Course Drop/Withdrawal Policy

  • Any time prior to the 1st class: Course Drop Period with Full Refund.
  • After the 1st and before the 2nd class: Course Drop Period with Refund minus $20 fee.
  • After the 2nd class: Course Withdrawal with No Refund.

Contact Information

For registration inquiries:
Telephone: 514-398-5454
E-mail: parl.scs [at] mcgill.ca

For program inquiries:
Dr. Frederick (Rick) Stapenhurst: frederick.stapenhurst [at] mcgill.ca