Policy Questions: A Conceptual Study

Thomas F. Green

Abstract


A policy question is a request for a fairly stable, but modifiable authoritative line of action aimed at securing an optimal balance between different goods, all of which must be pursued, but cannot be jointly maximized. To such questions there are no purely technical solutions, a point that is revealed by the etiology of policy questions. They appear to arise from conflicts among humans over the distribution of goods, i.e., conflicts of interest. However, the deeper roots of such questions lie not in a conflict of human interests, but in the incompatibility of the actual goods that human beings seek. Policy questions ask how to allocate such goods. But this allocation is the business of politics. No policy without politics nor politics without polity.

Keywords


politics, politics of education, allocation of resources

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.14507/epaa.v2n7.1994

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