Development Management and Policy Program

Course Descriptions

Required Courses

Students must complete the four core courses, two methodology courses, and the Thesis Writing Seminar. Please consult the Academic Calendar for detailed information regarding specific instructors and the trimester that the courses are offered.

Políticas sociales comparadas
DEVM 521 Comparative Social Policy

La asignatura ofrece una introducción teórica al mundo de la política social y un abordaje comparativo de modelos nacionales, con énfasis en los casos latinoamericanos. Se examinan los complejos de políticas públicas en las áreas de empleo, seguridad social, educación, salud, servicos públicos y asistencia social.

The course offers a theoretical introduction to the realm of social policy and a comparative perspective of national models, emphasizing Latin American cases. Under this light, the course studies regional systems of public policies in employment, social security, health, public services and social assistance.

Política y sociedad en América Latina
DEVM 524 Politics and Society in Latin America

La asignatura ofrece una aproximación a las características de los sistemas políticos y a los legados políticos y sociales de América Latina desde una perspectiva comparada. Se examinan los cambios en los patrones de la acción política y social resultantes de la evolución histórica, así como las perspectivas y riesgos que se abren para la consolidación democrática.

The course offers an approach to the singularities of political systems and the social and political legacies of Latin America, from a comparative perspective. Changes in the patterns of social and political agency will be examined, as well as scenarios for democratic consolidation.

Políticas públicas (métodos y teorías)
DEVM 536 Policy: Theory and Methods

El curso tiene como objetivos desarrollar habilidades para realizar investigación en torno al origen, diseño, desarrollo e impactos de las políticas públicas. Se hace particular énfasis en las características y problemáticas de su instrumentación, y en los diferentes modelos de gestión pública que ofrece el presente latinoamericano.

The course aims at developing abilities to perform research around the origin, design, development and impact of public policies. Peculiarities and problems of policy implementation are emphasized, as well as different models of public management present in contemporary Latin America.

Mercado, sociedad y estado
DEVM 548 Market, Society and State

La asignatura se propone visitar el debate conceptual e ideológico que subyace a las opciones políticas modernas de desarrollo. Se pone el acento en la comprensión de las formas y dimensiones que adoptan, en la actualidad latinoamericana, con perspectiva histórica, las visiones liberales y socialistas de la política, la economía y la sociedad.

The seminar’s objective is to visit the conceptual and ideological debates underlying modern political ideas of development. It looks at the evolution of thinking regarding development and the major paradigms or schools of thought. The course begins by delving into some concepts and classic works in the field and proceed into an examination of more recent paradigms. The seminar ends with a discussion of the most recent theorizing about the successes and challenges of development. One major subtheme of the course is to look in depth at the first developing region of the world, Europe, and try to glean some lessons for more recent developers.

Metodología de la Investigación (Métodos de Investigación Cuantitativa y Cualitativa)
DEVM 511 Research Methodology (Quantitative and Qualitative Research Methods)

El curso aborda la naturaleza de los instrumentos de construcción de conocimiento en las ciencias sociales. Se introduce a los estudiantes en el desarrollo y procesamiento de datos cuantitativos, abordando diferentes tecnologías y estrategias. Se presentan asimismo aproximaciones básicas a los métodos de investigación cualitativa y a las principales técnicas de investigación disponibles.

The course tackles the nature of instruments for knowledge building in social sciences. Students are introduced to the development and processing of quantitative data, including different technologies and strategies. Basic approaches to methods of qualitative research are also visited, so as common research techniques available in social sciences.

Metodología Específica (Análisis de Políticas Públicas)
DEVM 512 Methodology of Public Policy Analysis)

Se instruye a los estudiantes en la comprensión de la importancia de la metodología específica del análisis de políticas públicas, con énfasis en las diferentes teorías y abordajes de la lógica del ciclo de políticas públicas. Con estas herramientas se analizan las particularidades de la política pública latinoamericana, a partir del estudio de casos sectoriales y nacionales.

Students are instructed on the importance of specific methods of public policy analysis, with special regard to to different theories and perspectives on the logics of the public policy cycle. With the help of these tools, peculiarities of Latin American public policies are analyzed, through the study of sector and national cases.

Seminarios de tesis I y II
DEVM 605 Thesis Seminars I and II

El Seminario de Tesis I introduce a los estudiantes del posgrado a un conjunto de enfoques, instrumentos y técnicas apropiados para generar un proyecto de Tesis de Maestría que cuente con los atributos mínimos de coherencia, relevancia y factibilidad. El Seminario II (tutorial) los guía en el armado y la presentación de dicho proyecto.

The Thesis Seminar introduces post-graduate students to approaches, instruments and techniques appropriate to generate an MA Thesis Project which is coherent, relevant and feasible. Seminar II (tutorial) guides individual students in the preparation and presentation of the Thesis Project. This is a pass/fail course.

Elective Courses

Relaciones Económicas Globales
Global Economic Relations

Este curso adopta un enfoque “institucional” sobre las políticas internacionales y domésticas de comercio, finanzas y desarrollo. Analiza los efectos que las instituciones domésticas e internacionales tienen en tres cuestiones económicas centrales: el comercio, las finanzas y el desarrollo económico. El curso le presta particular atención a tres instituciones internacionales –la Organización Mundial del Comercio (OMC), el Fondo Monetario Internacional (FMI) y el Banco Mundial- y la forma en que éstas interactúan con instituciones domésticas para influenciar patrones de comercio, finanzas y desarrollo, con especial referencia a América Latina.

This course takes an "institutional" approach to the international and domestic politics of trade, finance, and development. It addresses the effects that domestic and international political institutions have on three central economic issues: trade, finance, and economic development. The course pays particular attention to three international institutions -the World Trade Organization (WTO), the International Monetary Fund (IMF), and the World Bank- and the way they interact with domestic institutions to influence patterns of trade, finance, and development, with special reference to Latin America.

Estudios del Desarrollo
Development Studies

El curso pretende examinar filosófica y conceptualmente la idea de “desarrollo”, prestando particular atención a la relación que se establece entre desarrollo y modernidad. Con este objetivo, se visitan los principales núcleos problemáticos de los debates clásicos y contemporáneos sobre el desarrollo en América Latina.

The course examines philosophical and conceptual ideas of “development”, with particular attention to the relationship between development and modernity. With this objective, the course visits the most important issues involved in classic and contemporary debates of development in Latin America.

Política Económica Global
Global Political Economy

El curso está diseñado para proveer a los estudiantes de fundamentos para comprender cuestiones clave y entender opciones de política económica a la luz de cambios continuos en la política económica global. El curso utiliza aproximaciones académicas y no académicas para analizar la interacción entre actores internacionales y domésticos e instituciones en el contexto de presiones creadas por la dependencia en formas diferentes de capital (incluyendo préstamos bancarios, bonos, inversiones financieras, inversión extranjera directa y comercio). Estos elementos serán usados para examinar las crisis económicas de Asia en 1997, de América Latina en 1999-2000 y de los EE.UU. actuales.

The course is designed to provide students with the building blocks for addressing key questions and understanding economic policy choices in light of continuing change in contemporary global political economy. The course uses scholarly and non-scholarly approaches and theories to analyze the interaction among domestic and international actors and institutions in the context of pressures created by reliance on different forms of capital (including bank lending, bonds and portfolio investment, foreign direct investment, and trade). These insights are used to examine the economic crises in Asia in 1997, Latin America in 1999-2000, and the United States today.

Democracia, Gobernanza y Gobernabilidad
Democracy, Governance and Governability

El curso apunta a proveer una introducción a los problemas de la democracia y los desafíos de la gobernabilidad. Comienza con una discusión sobre regímenes democráticos y procesos de consolidación de la democracia. Examina a continuación el rol de la sociedad civil y los factores internacionales que afectan los procesos de transición y consolidación de la democracia. Finalmente, considera los desafíos de la promoción de la democracia y la gobernanza en las áreas de reforma estatal, lucha contra la corrupción y educación.

This course aims to provide an introduction to the issues of democracy and the challenges of governance. It begins with a discussion of democracy, regime types, and consolidation. It then examines the role that civil society and international factors play in the processes of transition and consolidation of democracy. The last set of themes considered are the challenges of democracy promotion as well as governance in the areas of state reform, the struggle against corruption, and education.

Environment and Politics

New course outline in preparation

Education Policies

New course outline in preparation

Cooperación Internacional
International Cooperation

New course outline in preparation

DEVM 999 Thesis Research

Once Students have completed their coursework, they should enroll in "DEVM 999 Thesis Research," which is the specific course number designation for someone in the thesis writing and research phase of the program. Students are considered "full-time" for financial aid purposes under this status.

Previous Course Offerings

DEVM 545 Democracy: Classical and Contemporary Interpretations (3 credits) - This course opens with an examination of democracy through different paradigms, including classical political theory, liberalism, economic theory of democracy, Marxism, pluralism, and modern sociology. The course then employs these paradigms to analyse critical issues in contemporary democracies, such as citizenship, representation, individual freedom, social welfare, and nationalism.

DEVM 551 Political Trends in MERCOSUR Societies (3 credits) - This seminar focuses on several problems in the analysis of contemporary Latin American politics, paying special attention to the countries of the MERCOSUR. The first is the question of the strengths and weaknesses of the state versus the market. The second theme also focuses on state capacity, but in terms of distributive policy and responsiveness to social demands. The third theme highlights the issue of political representation and explores the new channels for political participation comparing the experiences of Brazil and Argentina, and to a lesser extent of Uruguay and Paraguay. Finally, we will look into processes of political and economic decentralization and the role of sub-regional governments.

DEVM 558 The Politics of Economic Reform (3 credits) - In recent years, the struggle to advance political liberalization and democracy have ecome interwoven with economic issues, particularly the quest to build market economies in Eastern Europe and the Third World . This process has revived a central debate in political science: to what extent does democracy depend on the evolution of market economies? Does economic reform require democracy, or as some have argued, is economic reform more effectively achieved in advance of political reform? Moreover, how do political alliances, institutions and state-society relations affect this dynamic? We shall see that there are no straight-forward answers to these complex questions. On the contrary, the post-Cold War world presents new challenges and circumstances. Because these circumstances are novel or historically conditioned, the evolution of theories about economic and political reform is an evolving and often messy affair. In this class we will familiarize ourselves with some of the competing theories of reform, and then apply them to case studies of political and economic reform in Eastern Europe , the Middle East , and South Asia . In doing so, we seek to gain a better sense of how to analyze the relationship between politics and economics in general, and political and economic reform in particular. Hopefully, the analytical tools and skills we develop in this class will prove useful as students pursue careers in the academic or policy world.

DEVM 579 Ideas and Political Culture in Latin America. Elective Course (3 credits) - The main goal of this course is to capture the historical development of a Latin American political thought and the constitution of a contemporary political culture in the region. The starting point of the proposed (albeit conventional) periodization is the economic crisis of 1929 and its impact on the Latin American societies and regimes. We will focus on the most significant political breakthroughs, since the collapse of the oligarchic state to the democratic transitions of the past decades, seeking to highlight different hermeneutic models, which contributed to shape Latin American politics. Special attention will be paid to the role of the intellectuals and their connection to power in Latin American Societies.

DEVM 590 The Federal Dimension of Democracy and Economic Reform in Latin America (3 credits) - This course focuses on the role of federalism and subnational regimes in the processes of democratic institutional building and pro-market economic reforms in Latin America. Studies on democratization, state reform, and economic liberalization have largely overlooked the implications of federal institutions and subnational politics for macroeconomic management and "good governance" in the region. Yet, there is a growing agreement among scholars regarding the need to re-examine critically previous hypotheses and predictions formulated in those fields, in light of the federal dimension. Accordingly, the purpose of this course is twofold. First, it seeks to make the students familiar with basic concepts (such as political federalism, fiscal federalism, decentralization) and their association with specific issues and debates pertaining to democratic theory, collective action, regional development, and the state. Second, the course aims at exploring the relationship between federalism, market-oriented reforms, and democratic institutional building in contemporary Latin America through the examination of the theoretical perspectives offered by neo-institutionalism and comparative cross-national studies. Special attention will be given to the experiences of Brazil and Argentina.

DEVM 609 Globalization and Governability (3 credits) - The course opens with a theoretical introduction to the main contending approaches about globalization. We will study globalization from the transformation perspective, that is, as a multi-dimensional process, which is re-structuring national societies and the world system as well. In the remaining sessions, we will develop a number of key topics related to globalization, such as the features of the so-called New Economy, the nature of the technological revolution, the main actors of the global dynamics since 1989, the constitution of a new global “map”, and the main arenas of global governance. Finally, the discussion will center on the impact of globalization on governability and its prospective outcomes.

DEVM 615 Political Regimes, Parties and Elections: Comparative Institutional Design (3 credits) - This course deals with the foundations of democracy as both an ideal regime and institutional pattern. We apply a historical- comparative approach to several empirical cases. As there is no neutral institutional design, we provide the students the analytical theories and data to understand its results and performance. This course aims at examining modern democratic institutions including: electoral systems, political parties, party systems, presidentialism and parlamentarism, bicameralism and unicameralism, federalism and unitarism, etc. Readings include both classic and contemporary comparative politics literature.

DEVM 618 Globalization and its impact on U.S.-Latin American Relations (3 credits) - Globalization has had enormous consequences on the United States and Latin America and on their relationship. Not only has it had a significant impact on domestic politics and processes in individual countries, it has also redefined national security interests. Globalization has led to increased economic integration and interdependence, and it has also opened economies and, in important ways, contributed to democratization. But globalization has also unleashed disintegrative forces which challenge the capacity of nation-states, even the most powerful, to deal with problems at home but also to negotiate with other states and multilateral institutions at the international level. Thus, while globalization has impelled positive changes, it has also generated economic insecurity, increased unemployment, social disintegration, international criminality. All these pose severe challenges to the capacity of nation-states. This course attempts to place the evolving US-Latin American relationship within the context of this process of globalization. The course begins with a definition of globalization and its regional and national consequences. It then turns to look at the evolution of US foreign policy toward Latin America, examining the broad outlines of this policy as well as the domestic processes through which it is formulated. The course then turns to Latin America and how its insertion in the international system has evolved over the past two decades. The final part of this course explores the dynamic of certain issue areas (trade and regional integration, corruption, drug trafficking, immigration, and democratization) on US-Latin American relations.

DEVM 625 Latin American Politics: Globalization and the Meltdown of Society (3 credits) - This class analyses the contemporary political dilemmas faced by Latin American societies. It first provides a general historical background of the subject and then it focuses on five problem areas: a) the legacies of authoritarianism; b) political democracy and its shortcomings; c) economic reform and governance; d) political party systems; and e) the emergence of civil society. The course is designed to be explicitly comparative and it concentrates on eight countries and their trajectories: Mexico, Brazil, Chile, Argentina, Uruguay, Colombia, Venezuela and Peru. Examples from other cases like Cuba and Nicaragua are used throughout the course in order to examine patterns differing from the dominant matrix.

DEVM 632 Subnational Political Systems and Parties in Contemporary Latin America : Confederations; Segmentary Regionalisms (the Andean Region); and Hybrid Systems ( Mexico and Argentina ) (3 credits) - This course examines two relatively unexpected trends prevailing in Latin American politics --especially in the larger countries-- since the transitions to democracy of the 1980s. First, the “de-nationalization” of political party systems as a result both of: a) the reinvigoration of clientelistic patterns of territorial control, and b) the weakening of nationally-based ideological and programmatic appeals. Second, the tendency of political leaderships that were underpinned by locally- and provincially-based clientelistic networks to be supported and nourished by transnational private and public organizations seeking to promote the “technocratic panacea.” This panacea was advocated by policies associated with the Baker Plan and the Washington Consensus. These processes have been more intense in the region’s largest countries: Mexico , Brazil , Peru , Argentina , and Colombia .

DEVM 635 Contemporary Argentine Politics (3 credits) – The purpose of this course is to reconstruct the contemporary political history of Argentina from the beginning of democracy and authoritarianism to the democratic consolidation (1916-2001). In order to do so, we will study the strategies of the relevant political actors (political parties, trade unions, armed forces, among others) seeking to capture the features of political history and culture that shape the process of construction of institutions as well as that of the political regime. We will focus the analysis in two major events: one, which occurred during the Peronist government in 1973 and resulted in the Coup d’état of 1976 and the other, the presidential crisis in December 2001, which promoted a second democratic transition.

DEVM 525 Change in Public Organizations (3 credits) - The course will focus on concepts and methods for analysing public organizations and their influence on the setting and implementation of public policy. It will stress problems of effective management and incentives with limited resources vis-à-vis the public demand for increased service and improvements in organizational performance.

DEVM 560 Ethics, Values, and Policy (3 credits) - This course will provide an introduction to political and professional values for students planning a career in policy analysis in a public, commercial, or non-profit setting. The course will cover (1) prescriptive aspects of contemporary public policy issues; (2) professional ethics with an emphasis on accountability and responsibility; and, (3) the role of the policy analyst in a democracy. The methods will include case studies, historical interpretation, and conceptual analysis. The emphasis throughout will be on concrete problems, and questions faced by the working analyst or manager.

DEVM 570 Policy Instruments and Evaluation (3 credits) - The course seeks to introduce students to the field of public management techniques, such as strategic planning, policy formulation, process re-engineering, institutional analysis of state capacities, as well as issues pertaining to performance measurement and evaluation. Any significant improvement of public management in Latin America does require the construction of political consensus and the respect for the public and political management of state affairs. However, an adequate public management also requires that managers and organizations employ instruments and technologies that would improve such results, combining in this way technical and political dimensions for a successful management of state affairs.

DEVM 578 The Politics of Health in the Southern Cone (3 credits) - Health politics is important not only because of its direct relationship with the welfare of the people. It matters also for its economic and political effects. In this course, we intend to review the political processes surrounding health issues in the Southern Cone, comparing three cases that seemed to have gone along different paths: Chile, Brazil and Argentina. Each case has had to resolve almost simultaneously at least two types of “health questions”, coverage expansion and equity, and cost control and rationalization. Hence, the course is devoted to understand, first, the common elements in the responses articulated in the three countries, and, second, to explore the economic, political and institutional dynamics that give its unique features to each case. The course also provides an introductory landscape to each country health politics in order to facilitate a thorough understanding of the conditions and processes that will be discussed in the core sections.

DEVM 593 Structural Reform in Argentina and Latin America (3 credits) - This course will review the process of structural reform in the countries of MERCOSUR: Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay. Chile will also be included, though emphasis will be given to the cases of Argentina and Brazil. The course will analyse the interplay of democratic consolidation and economic reform in the last two decades, paying close attention to the emergence of new mechanisms in the relationship between the public and private sectors. It will also consider the role of other political institutions (mainly legislatures) and compare government policy in several arenas.

DEVM 611 The Economics of the Public Sector (3 credits) - This course teaches the essential concepts and tools of public sector economics, and applies them to relevant public policy issues. The topics covered in the course include both the revenue and expenditure side of government. Specifically, alternative tax policies and major government spending programs are discussed. The course is designed to provide a review of the basic economic theory relevant to each topic, and then quickly move from theory to empirical analysis of government programs. Efficiency and equity arguments for government interventions, economic theories of government decision-making, and empirical evidence on government actions are analysed. As such, the course is intended to bridge the gap between theory and policy applications. Some of the questions for this course are: Has the government decline its role in the economy over the 1990s? Is there a real trade-off between efficiency and equity in tax policy? Should social insurance programs be financed through benefit or general taxes? Who should tax and spend?

DEVM 620 The Economics of the Public Sector in Emerging Countries and the Impact of the International Financial Markets (3 credits) - This course teaches the essential concepts and tools of public sector economics in developing nations with special emphasis on Latin American and Mercosur societies. Relevant public policy issues are discussed in light of the recent financial and economic crises produced by the new international environment. The course starts with a review of the basic economic theory relevant to each topic, and then quickly moves from theory to empirical analysis of government programs. Efficiency and equity arguments for government interventions, economic theories of government decision-making, and empirical evidence on government actions are analysed. The empirical topics covered in the course include both the revenue and expenditure side of government . Seeking to bridge the gap between theory and policy applications, some of the leading questions of this course are: Has the government decline its role in the economy over the 1990s? How should the programs oriented to manage the deep financial crises balance efficiency and equity? Which would be the best policy instruments to achieve such a balance? What should be the role of the different government segments in monitoring the economic and financial programs?

DEVM 539 Sociology of Public Organizations (3 credits) - This course explores the sociology of public organizations and organization theory, with a particular focus on its paradigms and issues. Through the use of political science, economics and organizational behavior theory, we analyse the nature, specificity and types of public organizations as well as the normative context of public organizations. Of particular interest is the nature and definition of authority, power, and leadership in complex organizations. At the conclusion of the course, students will be able to diagnose and evaluate the specific capabilities of public organizations.

DEVM 557 Poverty, Inequality and Growth: The New Washington Consensus (3 credits) - This course examines some of the most salient topics in study of poverty, social inequality and economic growth in Latin America. The primary focus of the course will be on (a) the social impact of economic growth and structural reforms; (b) the impact of historical patterns of social inequality on economic growth; and (c) the political processes shaping policy-making around poverty, inequality and growth over the past two decades. The course will critically review the major theories used in these areas of inquiry, evaluate how different theoretical approaches have been used in empirical research, discuss the relevant empirical data, and assess the social policy implications of alternative perspectives. To conclude, the course will examine the relationship between regional trends and broader, world-economic patterns of inequality at the turn of the century.

DEVM 572 International Social Development Policy (3 credits) - In this course, we will cover several topics related to the “social” aspects of development. Of course, there is a broad range of topics that could be discussed; we will concentrate on some of the key ones. One of the most commonly used measures of development is GDP per capita, the pace of development is often measured by the rate of change of this variable (or economic growth). Yet, there are a myriad of other factors that are part of “development”. The focus of this course will be on these other aspects of development, and on their interaction with economic growth as conventionally defined. A large part of the course will be devoted towards an examination of previous and existing policies, and on analysing previous experiences in developing countries. Thus, the focus will be largely (but not solely) on practical issues.

DEVM 585 Citizenship and Society (3 credits) - The course focuses on a series of political and sociological issues related to the transformation of socio-political relationships and collective institutions that had developed in occidental democracies during the second part of the XXth century. The de-institutionalization of that matrix has produced different processes of social individualization, which present positive or negative characteristics --depending on the cases and the authors-- in relation to the constitution of autonomous subjects. The structure of the course is organized around two major axis with their theoretical and practical implications. The first one is the notion of citizenship. The second one concerns the new forms of collective action that have emerged in the 1990s. The course situates the debates in the general context of contemporary democracies with an emphasis in Latin America and, in particular, Argentina. The approach we propose seeks to analyse how social actors become conscious of being such, and also the way social science discourses contribute to shape those processes as a result of their own transformations and inflexions.

DEVM 513 Case Study Research (3 credits) This seminar helps students create and critique methodologically sophisticated case study research designs. It explores the techniques, uses, strengths, and limitations of case study methods. After exploring the philosophy of science foundations of making causal inferences from case studies, the seminar explores the core issues in case study research design, including methods of structured and focused comparisons of cases, typological theory, case selection, process tracing, congruence testing, and the use of counterfactual analysis. Next, the seminar looks at the assumptions, strengths, and weaknesses of case study methods relative to those of alternative methods, particularly statistical methods and formal modeling, and it addresses ways of combining these methods in a single research project. The seminar then examines field research techniques, including archival research and interviews. It concludes with students presenting their own case study research designs for constructive suggestions from seminar participants.

DEVM 514 Theory and Methodology in Policy Sciences (3 credits) The course focuses on the academic literature on, and actual practical examples of, public policy management. The course is interactive. Each day, after a lecture introducing some of the academic literature on public management, students will analyze and discuss a case, offering their own diagnoses of the problems the manager(s) in the case faced, and recommending actions the managers could have taken to resolve these problems.