IU Bulletins HomeBloomington Campus
Indiana University
Search University Graduate 
School Bulletin

Request University 
Graduate School Application Packet

University Graduate School 
Bulletin Table of Contents

Academic Bulletin

University Graduate School  
Kirkwood Hall 111 
Indiana University 
Bloomington, IN 47405 
(812) 855-8853 
Contact Graduate Office 

Public Affairs

School of Public and Environmental Affairs

Astrid Merget

Departmental e-mail:

Note: Be sure to specify the program in which you are interested when sending mail.

Departmental URL:

Graduate Faculty

University President Emeritus
John Ryan

University Professor Emeritus
York Willbern

Arthur F. Bentley Professor
Lynton Caldwell (Emeritus)

Chancellorsí Professor
James Perry

Distinguished Professor
Ronald Hites

Robert Agranoff, David B. Audretsch, Randall Baker, William Black, Charles Bonser (Emeritus), Jeremy Dunning, Kirsten Gronbjerg, Hendrick Haitjema, Roger Hamburg (SB) (Emeritus, Political Science), William Hojnacki (SB),* Jack Hopkins (Emeritus), John Kirlin (I), Robert Lehnen (I), Eugene McGregor, John Mikesell, Theodore Miller, Patrick OíMeara, Clinton Oster, John Ottensman (I) (Geography), David Parkhurst, Roger Parks, Joseph Pellicciotti (NW),* Maureen Pirog, J. C. Randolph, Edwardo Rhodes, Mark Rosentraub (I), Barry Rubin, Richard Rubin, Roy Shin (Emeritus), Timothy A. Tilton, Jeffrey White, Daniel Willard (Emeritus), Charles Wise, Lois Wise, Terrell Zollinger (I), Kurt Zorn

Associate Professors
Kenneth Adams (I), Allen Anderson (K), Debera Backhus, Terry L. Baumer (I), Wolfgang Bielefeld (I), Lisa Bingham, Laku Chidambaram, Christopher Craft,* David Good, Jane Grant* (FW), Karen Harlow* (I), Diane Henshel, Ann Holmes (I), Roger Jarjoura* (I), Craig Johnson,* Robert Kravchuk, Kerry Krutilla, Greg Lindsey* (I), William Ludwin (FW), Joyce Man (I), David McSwane* (I), Deborah Mesch (I), Samuel Nunn* (I), C. James Owen* (FW), D. Jeanne Patterson (Emerita), Flynn W. Picardal, Ingrid Ritchie* (I), Marc Rodwin, Mary Tschirhart, Frank Vilardo*

Assistant Professors
Matthew Auer,* John Gant,* Vicky Meretsky,* Kenna Quinet* (I), David Reingold,* Rafael Reuveny,* Philip Stevens,* Ming Tai-Seale,* Susan Zinner-Kemp* (NW)

An I after a faculty memberís name indicates that the person teaches at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis; FW, at Fort Wayne; K, at Kokomo; NW, at Gary; and SB, at South Bend.

Academic Advisor
Professor Lois R. Wise, SPEA 441, (812) 855-2451

Degree Offered
Doctor of Philosophy

Doctor of Philosophy Degree

The doctoral program in Public Affairs builds on the unique strengths of SPEAís interdisciplinary faculty and research programs. The curriculum equips students with the necessary skills for independent research and analysis of problems, issues, and solutions in government and the nonprofit sector in the following three major fields:

  1. Public Finance: the theory and practice of fiscal administration, including public budgeting, revenue administration, and financial management;
  2. Public Management: the design and operation of governmental institutions including strategic/operations management and the complex interrelationships between public and private organizations; and
  3. Public Policy Analysis: research methods and quantitative techniques for policy analysis, including the content, design and evaluation of public programs.
Instead of being grounded in a traditional academic discipline, each of the fields has developed from the application of several theoretical literatures to real-world public affairs problems. Thus, although research is grounded in the social sciences, the context of inquiry reverses the normal research process: instead of beginning with questions originating with discipline-based scholarship, the research process originates with public problems and issues. The research challenge, then, is to match available tools of inquiry to the research opportunities presented by problems.

Admission Requirements
Students apply to the School of Public and Environmental Affairs and those accepted for doctoral studies in SPEA are recommended to the University Graduate School for formal admission into the Ph.D. program. Applicants to this program must have completed at least a bachelorís degree. Prospective students are required to submit (1) a statement of purpose, which should be as specific as possible and, preferably, should refer to potential research mentors by name; (2) official results of the Graduate Record Examinations (GRE); (3) official transcripts of all undergraduate and graduate work completed; and (4) three letters of recommendation. Applicants whose native language is not English must also submit results of the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL).

Advisory Committee
Early in the studentís program, but in no case later than the third semester in the program, the student must form an advisory committee. The committee consists of four to five members and includes at least one faculty member from each of the studentís two chosen major fields of study and also a representative of his or her minor field. The committee members act as mentors and help monitor the selection and fulfillment of program requirements. The chairperson of the committee serves as the studentís principal advisor.

Degree Requirements

Fields of Study
Students must study two of the following three major fields that apply theory to public affairs problems: public finance, public management, or public policy analysis.

Minor Field
In addition to these major fields, students must select a minor field according to their research interests. The minor field is designed in consultation with a faculty advisor and according to the rules of the University Graduate School.

Professional Ethics and Teaching
Because of the unique and sensitive issues surrounding government ethics and public trust, all doctoral students are required to complete a seminar in the professional ethics and teaching of public affairs. This seminar is usually taken over two semesters, generally during the studentís first year in the program.

Course Requirements
In addition to the required course in Professional Ethics and Teaching, all students complete a core sequence of courses that includes a course in research design and methods in public affairs and three semesters of a workshop in public policy. Students without prior graduate work in a field related to public affairs are also required to take an introductory course in public affairs. Students must also complete a research skills sequence (a two-semester quantitative analysis sequence) and must demonstrate either (1) advanced proficiency in quantitative or qualitative analysis or (2) proficiency in a foreign language appropriate to their field of study. A two-course sequence of required courses plus two approved electives must be completed in each major field. The minor field requires a three- or four-course sequence of courses.

Advisory Committee Review
During the third semester, the advisory committee meets with the student to review academic progress and to approve the program of study. The committee reviews and approves any graduate course credits (with a maximum of 30 semester hours) that the student is permitted to transfer toward the program. Prior to completion of the fifth semester, the student will submit a research paper to the advisory committee and present the paper orally. The advisory committee will evaluate the paper and the presentation and will recommend to the Public Affairs Ph.D. Committee whether or not the student should be permitted to continue in the program.

Qualifying Examination
To enter into formal degree candidacy, students must successfully complete written and oral qualifying examinations covering content from their two major fields of study.

Upon completion of course work and all exams, the student writes a dissertation. This allows the student to apply the knowledge acquired during the formal parts of the program and to contribute to the advancement of the studentís field of study.

Return to Top

Indiana University
Office of Creative Services
Poplars 721
400 East Seventh Street
Bloomington, IN 47405-3085
(812) 855-1162

Comments: iupubs@indiana.edu
Copyright ,, The Trustees of Indiana University