April 27: The Policy Formation Process

How often think tanks are cited in news reports

Important announcements

  • See the assignments page for posted instructions for the interview assignment due Monday April 25 and the final individual presentation on class on May 11
  • Important note on the interview assignment: multiple students working with the same organization can conduct a single interview but must write them up separately!
  • Keep working on your presentation of a chapter of Wilson with your partner (see updated sheet on the assignments page for the date/chapter/partner) and meet with your org if it’s already approved or finalize details if we’re still finding you a spot
  • We return to weekly meetings starting April 27. See schedule on the syllabus with any changes announced in class and posted in the weekly updates (like this one)
  • Prof. Williams Zoom live chat hours: Tuesdays from 6-8 PM! on Zoom here. Or call: +1 929 205 6099 then add meeting ID: 528 450 5381 [NO LIVE CHAT ON APRIL 19: ENJOY SPRING BREAK!]
  • The 2022 Association for the Study of Classical African Civilizations (ASCAC) Conference runs through this weekend via Zoom. Registration details and schedule here

Highlights from 4/13 class: 

  • Student intro presentations on organizations

April 20: Spring break: we don’t meet.

What to do for Wed. April 27: 

We’ll start the class with a guest lecture by Michael Partis, Executive Director of the Bronx Community Development Initiative. See his bio here.

After the break, we return to Amos Wilson:

Read Chapter 9 (“The Policy Formation Process”) in Amos Wilson’s Blueprint for Black Power slowly and carefully. Only one chapter this week, as it is longer than most. This chapter lays out the process by which public policies are formed and the views of people in influential positions are shaped by various forces.

Chapter presentation by Ann-Marie and Shanika

Pay special attention to the following chapter sections:

  • Think Tanks
  • The Need for Afrikan centered Information and Strategy Centers
  • On the Black Hand Side: Black Power Networks and Institutions of Higher Learning
  • Look carefully at the connections on Wilson’s diagram on page 170

Questions to think about as you read:

  • How do foundations and think tanks influence public policy?
  • How does this process aid those already in power?
  • How has corporate and private funding shaped the role of Black higher education?
  • How might Afrikan centered think tanks/policy centers intervene?
  • How does your organization engage in the policy formation process?

What’s next:

  • Wednesday April 20 is CUNY spring break: we do not meet
  • Monday April 25: interview assignment due
  • Wednesday April 27 we return to weekly meetings for the last 3 weeks of the semester
  • Wednesday May 4: Chapter 10–The Candidate Selection Process, presentation by Mia and Atyana
  • Wednesday May 11: Final class meeting. Student final presentations, reflection

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