Project Definition Worksheets – Labor Relations Policy Project Definition Worksheet This worksheet is designed to help students conceptualize the essential elements of their capstone project. Completing this sheet and then discussing it with your instructor will ensure that your project will proceed smoothly. By the end of the second week, you must provide a version of this sheet which your professor approves as a basis for proceeding further with your capstone project. What is your specialization and how does your project fit with your specialization Identify the action-forcing event that prompted the study. Identify the specific policy to be changed, including its jurisdiction. Indicate where the policy can be found. What is your client’s question driving the study? The question should reference a specific policy and what the client hopes to achieve by changing the policy. Examples: ? How can border policy be improved to better prevent human trafficking and smuggling to the United States from Mexico? ? How can human rights policies in New York City alleviate age discrimination in the workplace? Identify the client or recipient of the study. Identify your role or position. For example, if you are employed by the client, what is your job title or responsibility related to policy? Provide a source you will use to gather information for your problem assessment; for example, data that provide a measure of the problem or describe the timeline. Identify specific data sources or documents to be used in your literature review related to specific or local information about your policy problem, scholarly literature, and/or best practices for addressing this kind of policy problem. Identify the stakeholders and their positions relative to the policy under study. Name actual officials, and, if relevant, the groups they represent. Stakeholders include policymakers and people employed by lobbying or professional associations. Identify at least three potential policy options. Make sure that these involve changes to the policy identified above.   Re:   Note: Students may use this template for development of the Primary Memorandum. However, first delete all text in italics, retaining the bold headings. The text is italics is intended as advice not content. Do not use the advice as subheadings. Do not rely only on the advice in italics in this template – the full advice is posted at   The introduction does not need a heading. · Introduce the action-forcing event · Include the question your client asks · The question normally includes the word “policy” · Connect the problem to a policy.   Assessment of the Problem · What is the underlying problem – is there a more complex explanation? · Can you provide measures of the problem? · Recent history, or timeline – what decisions and policies got us here? · How does your policy affect the problem – connect the problem to your policy. · Be sure to clearly identify the policy – where can the reader obtain it?   Literature Review · Local information – reports and news articles · Scholarly information about the problem · Best Practices – successful approaches from other jurisdictions   Stakeholder Analysis · Introduce the stakeholders – specific officials representing groups with different interests and points of view about the problem and possible solutions. · Text inside of the tables can be in 10-point font.   · The “Definition/Measure of Success” refers to the stakeholder’s qualitative or quantitative test of success for a solution to the problem. Stakeholder Analysis Stakeholder Title/Function Source of Influence Explanation of the Problem Perception of Crisis Proximity to Problem Ability to Fix Problem Ends Desired Definition/Measure of Success Essential to Solution? · Explain what your client should learn from the table.   Options Specification · Introduce the options for policy changes to improve the problem · The options have to be changes to the policy referenced in your client’s question. Options Specification Options Description of Policy Change Source of Option Idea Implementation Responsibility Mechanism of Effect Cost Legal Requirements Position of 1st Stakeholder Position of 2nd Stakeholder Position of 3rd Stakeholder … Degree of Consensus · Summarize important differences about the policy options. Options Assessment · Briefly explain your approach to assessing the policy options. Options Assessment Options Description of policy change Political Feasibility Administrative Feasibility Financial Feasibility Equity Effectiveness … Summary Ranking · Explain important findings of your assessment. · What factors are most important in distinguishing the options. Recommendation · Explain your recommendation – the policy option you are supporting. · Identify important arguments against the policy you recommend, and offer a rebuttal Bibliography · It is recommended that you use the citation management system in Word to produce your bibliography. Se the Literature Review medialecture for more information.    

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