PhD Program

What can you expect from the program

We distinguish LPP from other public policy programs in two ways. First, while many public policy programs are mostly applied economics, economics is only one part of our curriculum. Our hallmark course, Strategizing Public Policy, illustrates our approach to the discipline. We use a case study method to analyze how policy is made at the local, state, and federal level through legislation, litigation, the ballot box, and civil action. Second, students interested in developing a more theoretical and empirical understanding of the law will appreciate our law and society focus.


Information accurate as of August 2014. Requirements and policies subject to change. For up-to-date information, contact Katie Higgins or view the official graduate catalogue for a full listing of graduate level courses.

Another unique aspect of the program is that students design their own interdisciplinary curriculum. After taking core courses in theory, research methodology and economics, students develop their own plan of study in their chosen policy field. Students take courses in the School of Law and other colleges at Northeastern. The law courses in the curriculum provide students with the foundation to conduct legal research, understand the legal aspects of their policy focus area, and understand how courts make policy.

LPP PhD Learning Outcomes

Core Courses and Sample Syllabi

Policy Focus Areas

  • Health Policy
  • Sustainability, Climate Change and Environmental Policy
  • Urban Policy

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