April 16, 2019, Updated June 21, 2019
In this final phase of the Social Sciences Review, the President and Provost are asking the Implementation Committee to develop detailed recommendations on two key efforts:
Creation of a Preeminent Public Policy Entity
Our first objective is to answer the following set of questions, keeping in mind that the goal of any policy entity is for Cornell to become truly world-class in this space, which consists of having high-quality curricular programs and offerings and doing excellent scholarship.
- What type of entity would best enable us to elevate the prominence of our scholarship and curricular offerings in the public policy domain, and to recruit and retain the world’s best faculty?
- Given that so many current and emerging research questions involve a policy dimension, what type of entity would best facilitate a truly university-level entity through the involvement of public policy faculty in research projects across colleges and campuses?
Focus on the following two options:
- CHE becomes College of Public Policy
- Policy School shared by CHE and CAS, with most PAM faculty plus other policy faculty
Our second objective is to answer the following set of questions, keeping in mind that the goal of any disciplinary structure is for Cornell to become truly-world class in the social science disciplines in the next 10-15 years, meaning we need to anticipate changes in these disciplines over time, as well as noting strategic investments our peers have made in the last 10-15 years.
- For the major social sciences disciplines of economics, psychology, and sociology, what are the specific advantages that could accrue from the creation, or expansion, of super-departments, and under what conditions (e.g., balancing across relevant areas within disciplines, as well as potentially having some shared foci across disciplines) would entering into super-departments make sense?
- What are the disadvantages, and how could they be mitigated? What strategic investments should be made to advance these efforts?
In seeking to achieve these two aspirations, how can we do so while best maintaining important academic connections and successful academic programs, respecting the intellectual contributions of all our faculty, and minimizing unnecessary disruption?