EU490      Half Unit
Evidence and Analysis in Policy-Making

This information is for the 2019/20 session.

Teacher responsible

Dr Julian Hoerner CBG 6.06 and Dr Miriam Sorace CBG 6.07


This course is compulsory on the MSc in European and International Public Policy, MSc in European and International Public Policy (LSE and Bocconi) and MSc in European and International Public Policy (LSE and Sciences Po). This course is available with permission as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.

Course content

This course aims to provide students with methodological knowledge and practical skills to analyse and evaluate policies and interventions by International Organisations, the European Union or national governments. Students become familiar with a number of research methods which allow them to critically appraise policy interventions from the decision-making to the implementation stage as well as with the practical skills to present their findings professionally and effectively. The course starts by familiarising students with the principles of research methods  and causal inference. It then covers applied policy analysis,  taking a mixed-method approach and drawing on qualitative, quantitative and experimental approaches and discussing practical aspect of policy analysis such as interviewing and the ethics of stakeholder involvement. For the final project, students work in groups on the assessment of a real-world policy intervention from the international, European or national level in areas such as international trade, migration, cohesion policy or social policy. In preparation of the final research project, students prepare a presentation on their methods and design on which they receive feedback from teaching staff.


16 hours of seminars and 6 hours of workshops in the MT.

Formative coursework

Presentation of the proposed research project in MT.

Indicative reading

  • Abma, T.A. (2006). The social relations of evaluation. In Shaw, I., Greene, J., & Mark, M. (Eds.) (2006). The SAGE Handbook of evaluation. Sage: London.
  • Bryson, J. (2007). What to do when stakeholders matter. Stakeholder Identification and Analysis Techniques. In Public Management Review 6(1), pp. 21-53.
  • Chalmers, A. F. (1982). What is this thing called science? (2nd ed.) Open University Press.
  • Dunning, T. (2012). Natural Experiments in the Social Sciences – A Design-Based Approach. Cambridge: CUP.
  • Gerring, J. (2007). Case Study Research: Principles And Practices. Cambridge: CUP.
  • Gilbert, N. (2008). Researching Social Life. London: Sage.
  • Groves, R.M., F.J. Fowler, M.P. Couper, J.M. Lepkowski, E. Singer, and R. Tourangeau (2009) Survey Methodology, 2nd Edition. New York: Wiley and Sons
  • Hancké, B. (2009). Intelligent research design: a guide for beginning researchers in the social sciences. Oxford University Press.
  • King, G., Keohane, R. O., & Verba, S. (1994). Designing social inquiry: Scientific inference in qualitative research. Princeton university press.
  • Shaw, I., Greene, J., & Mark, M. (Eds.) (2006). The SAGE Handbook of evaluation. London: Sage.
  • Versluis, E, Van Keulen, M. and Stephenson, P. (2011). Analyzing the European Policy Process. London: Palgrave.


Project (100%, 5000 words) in the LT.

Key facts

Department: European Institute

Total students 2018/19: Unavailable

Average class size 2018/19: Unavailable

Controlled access 2018/19: No

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Personal development skills

  • Leadership
  • Self-management
  • Team working
  • Problem solving
  • Application of information skills
  • Communication
  • Application of numeracy skills
  • Specialist skills