Topic: NAFTA analysis Assignment. Overview: Summarize the adoption, implementation, and analysis of a policy of your choice, aimed at a specific organization or committee that is part of the policy process. This assignment extends your first research and writing assignment. You will add a new section to that assignment that summarizes the quantitative or other empirical evidence about the effectiveness of your policy. This section should be fairly short (perhaps around 1-2 pages). As an option, you may also revise the sections you have already completed on the politics and implementation of your policy. If you improve your initial grade. This assignment has 3 goals: It asks you to demonstrate mastery of the concepts and topics from the readings and our in-class discussions about how and why we use empirical data to predict and/or assess policy effects. It asks you to practice your professional writing skills. This is no time for flowery language or for building up slowly to a thesis. When you’re in the workplace and educating your boss, your department, your organization, or policy makers about the issues, time is short. You want your writing to be concise and direct. You want to make every word count. You want to use headings and bullet points to make sure that your key points jump out at the reader. You want to use details and analysis to back up these main points. Above all, you want a very busy reader to be able to understand your main points quickly, even if they just skim your paper. Finally, it asks you to become a mini-expert on a policy of your choosing – ideally, in a way that will give you credibility in the eyes of potential employers. Your paper’s new section should include the following content: A summary of the existing empirical studies that have been done on your policy, drawing from academic, government, scientific, and political sources as appropriate. You can include in your summary analyses of relevant/similar policies, or any analyses that you think provide empirical evidence about the likely effects of your policy. A critique and assessment of those studies. In addition to summarize what analyses have been done, you should provide your personal “take” or assessment about the quality of those data. If you find some analyses more credible than others, say so. If studies come to conflicting conclusions, explain which conclusions you find most credible and why. In other words, tell your audience a) what studies show about this policy’s effects; and b) how reliable those studies are. In the event that you can’t find any policy analyses to write about, you can summarize what we don’t know about the policy’s effects. Explain that we lack empirical data about the policy’s effects and identify what we might want to know about likely policy outcomes. A policy recommendation or conclusion that is based on what your summary of the empirical studies on this policy. You may want to revise the conclusion section of your first assignment to integrate this info effectively. Your paper should be well-organized to communicate your points clearly to your intended audience. You should have a main idea or a thesis statement that is stated upfront in the executive summary. Use headings to help the reader navigate through your paper. Use paragraphs that contain one main idea and several supporting details. Organize paragraphs so that ideas flow logically Use language and tone appropriate for your audience. Citation. Please use in-text citations (author, year) for any quotes or facts that you include in your text, and include a “works cited” list at the end of your paper. You can use any citation style that you prefer; if you don’t have a preference, use APA citation style. Professional writing is a journey, not a destination. Some of you have a lot of experience with professional writing, while others are just starting out. If you’re just starting out, a lot of these instructions may seem confusing or non-intuitive – especially if you are coming straight from undergraduate studies, where you are often encouraged to write more literary-style essays. My goal is that regardless of where you are on your journey, you improve over the course of our semester together. I encourage you to stop in to my office hours to share an outline or a draft with me and get feedback. We will also spend some time inside and outside of class thinking about what techniques are effective for this kind of writing.
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