PhD in Public Policy

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PhD in Public Policy-05

Public Policy is an emerging area of study that focuses on finding solutions to socio-economic issues extending into areas of public affairs, management, development, media, security, psychology, and law, amongst others. With the growing need to analyze issues from different perspectives, like historical, area-based, normatively, etc, policy studies dive deep into the mechanics of designing and implementing efficient strategies. This blog aims to summarise all the details about PhD in public policy and administration starting from a brief overview of what you will need to study at the leading universities.


Full-FormDoctor of Philosophy in Public Policy
Duration3-4 Years
Basic EligibilityPostgraduate Degree in Relevant Field with minimum 75%

About PhD in Public Policy

A degree in Public policy deals with the network of interrelated decisions that lead to the creation of new laws, rules, and regulations. Public policymakers consider objectives, means, and resources they need to use so that effective and lasting social change can be achieved. Proposed policies have to be authorized by legislation, and factors such as effectiveness, relevance, and interaction with government institutions and other policies are also taken into account. Public policies create the basis of constitutions, laws, and judicial decisions. The public policy discipline integrates theories and methods from public management, sociology, economy, finance, and political science. The major topics covered in this have applied econometrics and public policy, political psychology and public policy, management aspects of public policy, public budgeting, the business of nonprofits, and more. Communication and presentation skills are the key ingredients that students are willing to pursue It will help them in regulating and maintaining public regulations. They will also be experts in policy analysis and implementation.

There are many popular courses available in the same discipline. The number of choices increases when you are applying abroad and therefore, it’s better to know the choices and find a course that best fits you. Many universities also offer a combination of subjects in this discipline. Some of the courses are given below-

PhD Public AffairsPhD Health Services- Public Health PolicyPhD Business Administration- Business and Public Policy
PhD Government and Public PolicyPhD Public Policy and AdministrationPhD Science, Technology, Engineering and Public Policy 
PhD Teaching and Learning-Curriculum, Advocacy and PolicyPhD Language Policy and PlanningPhD Public Policy and Governance
PhD Juris Doctor -Public PolicyPhD Public Policy and ManagementPhD Innovation and Public Policy

Eligibility and Document Requirements

The number of seats in a PhD degree program is very limited and different universities have different specific criteria for admission that has to be met by the candidates. The basic eligibility requirements for a PhD Public Policy are given below-

  • Candidates willing to pursue a PhD in this and related courses must have a postgraduate degree in the relevant field such as social science, Economics etc.
  • Many Universities also require candidates to have relevant work experience. Thus having work experience in the relevant field is a plus point. 
  • Universities also ask for SOP (Statement of Purpose). SOPs play a major role in securing a seat in the preferred course. 
  • Letter of recommendation that vouches for your academic and research credentials. 
  • Test scores of the TOEFL/IELTS Exam are required to meet the English language requirements.
  • Other relevant documents include 10th Marksheet, 12th Marksheet, Bachelor Degree Passing Certificate and Marksheets, Postgraduate Degree Passing Certificate and Marksheets etc.

Also Read: Masters in Public Policy in the UK

List of Universities offering PhD in Public Policy Abroad

PhD in Public Policy is one of the leading courses. For the right course, one needs the right university too! Below is the list of top 20 universities –

Harvard UniversityUS
University of OxfordUK
London School of Economics and Political ScienceUK
University of CaliforniaUS
University of CambridgeUK
Stanford UniversityUS
Australian National UniversityAustralia
University of ChicagoUS
University of ColumbiaUS
University of TorontoCanada
The University of EdinburghUK
University of MichiganUS
University College LondonUK
University of AmsterdamNetherlands
University of British ColumbiaCanada
University of GeorgiaUS
Princeton UniversityUS
University of New South WalesAustralia
University of AucklandNew Zealand

List of Universities offering PhD in Public Policy in India

IIM BangaloreBangalore
University of MumbaiMumbai
St Xaviers CollegeMumbai
UNIPUNE-Savitribai Phule Pune UniversityPune
University of MadrasChennai
Dr. Rammanohar Lohia Avadh UniversityUttar Pradesh
Mahatma Jyoti Rao Phoole UniversityRajasthan
Symbiosis School for Liberal ArtsPune
Amity UniversityNoida

Career in Public Policy

What are the various jobs and profiles you can go to after completing PhD in Public Policy? There are a number of fields one can go to after obtaining a PhD in this field and the related subjects. Some of the major fields are-

  1. Policy-Making and Governance: Public policy mainly consists of the set of actions- plans, laws, behaviours which are adopted by a government. So, in short, a policymaker writes policies according to the changes in the government. 
  2. Non-Profit Leadership: The job of a Nonprofit leader is to manage financial responsibilities such as planning, budgeting, fundraising etc. They need finance skills to raise and utilize funds effectively and efficiently. 
  3. International Development: International development professionals aim at eliminating poverty in developing countries. A person who’s interested in international development can pursue jobs including communications, fundraising, consulting, advocacy, policy and research. 
  4. Social Entrepreneurship: A social entrepreneur starts a business for social welfare and not for profit. They mainly aim at producing environmentally friendly products or serving an underserved community. 
  5. Strategic and Management Consulting: A strategic management consultant assists his/her client. They step into complex situations, develop cogent and coherent plans of action to help companies meet their goals. 
  6. Public Administration and Defense: Public admins and defence cover civil law courts, national defence, taxation, public order and safety, foreign affairs, immigration services, social security activities and the administration of government programmes. 
  7. Public Affairs and Communications: They are engaged in managing interactions with media agencies. They also communicate with primary target audiences and monitor the organisation’s reputation in online mode. Apart from this, they provide help by managing internal communications to maintain a consistent brand. 


What is the duration of this course? 

The duration of the course can be from 3 to 5 years depending upon the university and country you’re pursuing this course from. But usually, this is a four years course. 

What are the popular courses in the field? 

Some of the popular courses in this field are PhD Public Affairs, PhD Government and Public Policy, PhD Teaching and Learning-Curriculum, Advocacy and Policy, PhD Juris Doctor -Public Policy etc. 

Are you planning to study PhD in Public Policy but not sure where to start from? Call our  Leverage Edu experts at 1800 572 000 for end-to-end guidance from application to Visa process.

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