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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Public Policy Challenges of the 21st Century by University of Virginia

1,084 ratings
281 reviews

About the Course

This course introduces class participants to the political significance and societal consequences of challenges facing U.S. and international policymakers. It is designed to help participants develop skills to analyze policy proposals and advocate for their preferred options for issues on the public policy agenda ahead. The class assumes basic knowledge about governing institutions and democratic processes, while recommending supplemental materials for further study to complement reading links provided. The course focuses on future policy challenges, while examining the broad historical context in which policies are adopted and implemented. As the course evaluates how issues are advanced by private sector interests, non-governmental organizations, and government policymakers, it examines how groups become effective policy advocates. Particular attention is paid to how winning coalitions are formed and how issue framing shapes the outcome of policy campaigns. The goal is neither to produce partisan talking points, nor to favor one governance philosophy over others. Rather it is to clarify the public policy challenges ahead and to enhance participants’ understanding of how policy options are adopted in the real world arena of contemporary politics....

Top reviews


Sep 27, 2019

To know the "Public Policy Challenges of the 21st Century" is more essential for the global people in this era. Thanks for the opportunity. I hope it will give a concise idea to learn on it...


Apr 24, 2020

This course does not focus on any partisan interest but rather inspires you to think deeply, challenges you to reason beyond the status quo, and empowers you with the tools to make an impact!

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1 - 25 of 279 Reviews for Public Policy Challenges of the 21st Century

By vibhor n

Mar 01, 2017

Interesting course. Would have been more helpful if had actually taught how to break a problem in parts and then create a policy.

By Shivangi M

Sep 15, 2015

It is very US oriented, Which is not necessarily a negative aspect, but please mention that in the course structure more clearly. Although Professor Warburg is very inspiring, the optimistic attitude towards policy leaders is what I think is needed for the younger generation who get sidelined by politics and not policy. It was quite rewarding. Thankyou.

By Zandro G R

Mar 26, 2019

This is the first course I have completed on Coursera. Its very engaging approach to distance education, made more accessible with its course design and approach, and the self-paced modules all contributed to my success throughout the coursework. Professor Warburg and his distinguished resource persons imparted wisdom and insights that will guide me in my further venture into public policy learning and practice.

By Tofail A

Sep 27, 2019

To know the "Public Policy Challenges of the 21st Century" is more essential for the global people in this era. Thanks for the opportunity. I hope it will give a concise idea to learn on it...

By Vivek A

May 03, 2019

This was an excellent introduction. I wish there could have been a greater opportunity for personal engagement with faculty, but I understand the platform makes it very difficult.

By Amita J

Nov 26, 2016

I loved the focus of this course, its future orientation and the way debates around an issue were discussed in-depth and very well in limited time. Loved It! Highly Recommend it!

By Tendai C

Nov 17, 2015

The course was refreshing in the way it made use of various public personalities to deliver lectures based on their personal and professional experiences. I highly recommend it.

By Namroz B

Jan 14, 2017

The course provides you with an excellent platform to learn & understand the public policy challenges. You will be able to listen the opinion of experts from political and social sphere to discuss public policy issues & challenges; how decisions are reached and consensus is developed. If you are interested in understanding the diverse set of public policy areas including, inter-alia, US Affordable Care Act, US China relationship, the role of media and government, data privacy in the information age etc. You must, therefore, allow yourself to review this course. You will also allow yourself to understand the unique perspective that Professor Gerry Warburg brings in when he engages the experts in involved yet pragmatic deliberations with regard to various issues.

By Gideon G M

Apr 24, 2020

This course does not focus on any partisan interest but rather inspires you to think deeply, challenges you to reason beyond the status quo, and empowers you with the tools to make an impact!

By Kasturi R G

Apr 29, 2019

It was a great course and I enjoyed the first brush of class room session on Public Policy domain. Clearly the highlight of this course was the diverse port folio of imminent speakers who brought their knowledge, wisdom and expertise to the interactive table. I'm a middle aged professional in India, who is recently involved in professional advocacy through Private and Govt. Sectors. The content and topics covered in the course are very appropriate and encompasses geographical diversities, albeit needs to be upgraded to the current challenges as the world has progressed considerably in last 5 years quite drastically. I wish to thank the Frank Batten University and Professor Gerry Warburg for the relevant and smartly designed course.

By L'aurelei D

Sep 06, 2015

This course was interesting and informative. Would have been better if the online portions of the MOOC reflected a wide range of speakers.

By Shankar C

Jul 19, 2020

This course has helped me to understand how and why the development and shaping a public policy that will impact a large population is done. My limited understanding while trying to leverage, use a policy to define & develop Communications framework | strategy to try and influence the same and see how it impacts business and brands is now changed. I will now look more carefully in the process of developing | shaping a policy and accordingly use to develop the communications framework.

These session on healthcare | technology | war powers was fascinating & the discussion with Senators was encouraging to hear and understand how it actually pans out. I assume even in the Indian context, a similar process would be happening albeit not necessarily coming to help students understand the nuances of the same.

Having completed this course, I move on another one with HarvardX: U.S. Public Policy: Social, Economic, and Foreign Policies that needs to be done and later planning a Graduate Certificate Course in Public Policy by an Indian private school to enhance my understanding of public policy. Am very thankful for UVA to have allowed foreign students to participate and learn especially someone like me at 52 with 26 years of professional work experience to get a chance.

Thanks a lot to Dean, UVA and Prof. Warburg and entire Team who put this great course together..!!

Shankar Chelluri | Hyderabad | India

By Matthew B

Jun 06, 2017

I very much appreciated how this course was taught and enjoyed listening to different speakers offer their views on the issues presented in the class. This course taught me how to think from other political points of view and helped me understand the problems that my generation faces. In my opinion, the best part of this class was the focus on learning to work with people with different political views. With the hyper-partisanship we have today in Washington and all the frustration that comes with it, this perspective was very refreshing. The only thing that I think could be improved is the length, as I thought it was too short. While I am aware that the course was designed this way, I wanted to learn more about some of the issues that were left out. Overall, this was a very interesting class!

By Joey M

May 15, 2020

Personally, I found this to be both an informative and empowering course. As someone that is interested in public policy and recently investing the time to study and read about the topic I found this course to be apropos to the moment in my life. Many of the topics discussed in the MOOC, despite having been recorded in 2013-2014 remain relevant today and perhaps amplified in relevance even since the recording time. Such topics include that of China policy and media divisiveness/partisanship to name just two. If you're remotely interested in public policy I encourage you to invest the time in this course. Enjoy!

By RoobeerToo H

Sep 24, 2015

Es un curso excelente, aunque algunos temas están dirigidos hacia alumnos con pretensiones de ejercer en Estados Unidos, la mayoría de los temas pueden ser interpretados y utilizados en otros lugares, en mi caso México, soy estudiante de Derecho y estoy haciendo mis prácticas profesionales en el Consulado General de México en Nueva York y encontré esta opción para seguir estudiando, seguir preparándome para aplicar los distintos conocimientos en las políticas públicas de mi país.

Muchas gracias a los colaboradores de este curso, les felicito y espero que tengan más cursos disponibles.

Atte. Roberto Herrera

By Andy M

Apr 09, 2020

The level of intentionality that went into crafting this course was abundantly clear. The format was unique and engaging, with a combination of student introductions, professor lectures, presentations by policymakers, and my favorite, the post-lecture discussions. Seeing that this course had 48 class sessions, of course, it was impossible for everything to be represented in this online course, but the content that was included was robust, diverse, and immensely timely. I commend everyone involved with their effort on this superb course!

By Karl B P A

Jan 06, 2020

I thoroughly enjoyed Prof. Warburg's elaboration of the public policy challenges, and seeing the contemporary issues in 2014 which corresponded or were perhaps used as bases for the GT2030 Report. It has been around 6 years since the recording of this course, but I find that they are more relevant than ever, in the face of the continuing climate crisis, different states' responses to the problem of technology used to undermine security and democratic processes, as well as the escalating tensions between the US and Iran.

By Josep C

Aug 14, 2015

Great opportunity to engage with several challenges our next future holds. As citizens and participants of public policies it's very refreshing have an inside about how the democracy works to solve these challenges. Despite being a highly american focused approach the speakers are of a high interest for everybody worldwide. Personally, would be a pleasure to attend one of these classes in live, and this training offered me the chance to virtually do it. Congratulations on the well balanced and structured course.

By Ayesha I B

Aug 29, 2020

Really enjoyed this course. It helped me organize my thoughts about the future public policy issues and as expressed in the ending lecture, made it easier for me to see that these challenges can be dealt with (by breaking them down). I have applied for the Fulbright scholarship programme and hope to get it. If I get a chance to visit the US, I would definitely like to see the magnificent Frank Batten School of Public Policy and meet Professor Warburg in person. Until then, I thank you for this opportunity!

By Stephen W

Oct 19, 2015

This course gives a lot of new ideas and concepts, along with good discussions on key topics facing public policy and those whom want to make or be involved in it. I have studied by myself for the FSOT, but this course I believe is instrumental in my self-education on political science- public policy. I think all people should take such a course not for their career but for better understanding foreign and domestic policies, and getting into more intellectual debates not like on social media sites.

By Suriya A H

Mar 17, 2016

Coming from a construction background with no policy work whatsoever besides personal interest, it was amazing to be able to understand the message that the speakers were conveying. Besides some cluelessness on the US senate system, every other topic was relevant to international audiences.

Best part was the weekly schedule that was recently in place, it help to keep pace on progress as sometimes it feels overwhelming as we try to answer every question that was posted after each video.

By Ruby G

Jun 28, 2020

This was an amazing course. The professor always posed challenging questions that made you think. I enjoyed listening to all the guest speakers because it brings forth different view points from our own that we would have otherwise never really listened to. Professor is extremely knowledgeable and provides an optimistic view to politics (while remaining realistic) -which many have a negative view of; thus, listening to him renewed my interest in politics/government.

By Martin K M

Apr 08, 2019

The zeal to learn not only to question the assumptions of policy analysts, but also to recognize how different kinds of analysis are used in support of political arguments. The pop up questions encouraged critical and creative thinking on many issues facing the world. Much this is tailored to mostly USA with a bias of China and India, i have found that the course has put me into good stead to question one or two things back home in Uganda.

By Lauren L

Sep 21, 2015

I am very pleased with the structure and content of this course. I have taken over a dozen clases on Coursera in the past year across a wide variety of disciplines and this is definitely one I am going to see through to the end. If you are interested in how public policy drive governments, corporations , and NGO's behaviour which in turn impacts directly upon individuals and entire populations, this is a great primer. Highly recommended.

By Benjamin P J

Sep 26, 2020

This was a very enjoyable and thought-provoking course which examined a variety of policy issues. I particularly liked the non-partisan nature of discussions, and the presence of a broad range of speakers with different experience and viewpoints. The pre-lecture readings, lecture transcripts, note-taking option and on-screen discussion questions all helped to create a very learner-friendly experience. While the discussions centre on American policy issues, many of these are invariably general enough to apply to any country (e.g. healthcare challenges, governance structures, etc). I would recommend reading the National Intelligence Council report (found under 'suggested readings') before beginning module 2, as this provides a global overview of many of the issues to be discussed in subsequent weeks.