The Environmental Protection Agency Program Evaluations

Topic: Public Policies
Words: 947 Pages: 3

Introduction

Notably, an example of an organization dealing with the challenges of planning and implementation of policy and programs is the Environmental Protection Agency, briefly EPA. Organizations, such as the EPA, serve as the fourth branch of government, acting in quasi-legislative and quasi-judicial capacities to implement the law and develop policy by filling in gaps left by legislation and serving as supplementary legislators (Amsler, 2016). When Congress passes environmental policy, the EPA puts it into effect by issuing regulations (“Our mission,” n.d.). Frequently, the organization establishes national standards that are enforced by states and tribes through their regulations. The EPA also upholds its regulations and assists businesses in understanding them. The paper will discuss statesmanship and statecraft, the EPA program evaluations and policy analysis, and conflict resolution and consensus.

Statesmanship and Statecraft

Statesmanship is generally conceptualized as morally outstanding policy-level leadership. The ideal of statesmanship should include exceptional leadership abilities and knowledge of the science of government (Jones, 2019). Calls for statesmanship are commonly encountered in public debate, particularly during times of crisis and constraint, when social requirements are high and faith in the system is low (Overeem & Bakker, 2019). Jones (2019) states that the statesman is regarded as a higher class of political actor who is completely and utterly devoted to the country. Hence, leaders are not only able to predict future events; they are also skilled enough in the art of politics to lead the country toward stability and prosperity.

A key role in administrative statesmanship is played by individuals called public servants. They are engaged in promoting government values and principles to maintain the constitutional order through appropriate, concessional action (Overeem & Bakker, 2019). According to the literature, the administrator’s job is to be aware of the Constitution’s moral foundational principles to promote its values and correct its extremes (Overeem & Bakker, 2019). Furthermore, the goal of statesmen remains to endorse the broadest possible public good or, in modern parlance, the general interest (Overeem & Bakker, 2019). Thus, it is essential to mention the study of the concept of covenant, which was initially a political term.

Covenant

This idea has long demonstrated the intersection of biblical studies and political theory. In recent decades, the relationship between the covenant and Constitution has moved to the fore of contemporary political thought to find the beginnings of certain democratic ideals in biblical Israel’s descriptions to gain cultural or religious power (Johnson, 2021). As a theological and political construct, a covenant is intended to maintain peace in the face of competing for human values, necessitates, and requirements.

Covenant offers several constructive points of application for guiding principles in leadership. Firstly, the covenant fosters an ideology of empowerment, mutual care, and responsibility. Covenants cannot be coerced or reduced to quid pro quo legal agreements, and they require all parties to only carry out certain agreed-upon obligations and care for one another, fostering lasting relationships (Fischer, 2017). As a result, covenant relationships are based on and necessitate a high level of trust among all involved parties.

Therefore, one of the core areas of statecraft is diplomacy, which refers to managing relations. Prantl (2021) suggests that diplomacy is the method by which state and non-state actors socially create and shape their viewpoints, establish agendas, interact, dispute, and negotiate varying core values and objectives. Strategic diplomacy designates the system’s primary actors, flows and relationships, and feedback mechanisms (Prantl, 2021). When considering strategic diplomacy as a policy framework, the ultimate goal is to develop and implement strategies that enhance policy space (Prantl, 2021). Furthermore, strategic diplomacy would be the critical, embracing tool guiding statecraft repertoires.

Program Evaluations and Policy Analysis

Program evaluation and policy analysis can assist in identifying areas that require improvement and determine whether the program or policy is meeting its goals. Individual systematic studies are conducted to assess how well a program is working and why. The EPA has used program evaluation to assist innovative approaches and emerging practices, as well as to indicate opportunities to enhance efficiency and effectiveness (“Program evaluation,” n.d.). Furthermore, program evaluations aim to continuously upgrade existing programs, as well as human health and the environment.

Program evaluations can assess a program’s performance at any stage of its development. The type of program evaluation conducted corresponds to the program’s maturity, such as progression, implementation, or accomplishment, and is driven by the purpose of the assessment and the questions that it tries to address (“Program evaluation,” n.d.). Performance measurement is a method of continuously monitoring and reporting a program’s progress and achievements. Making cost-effective choices requires measurement. The EPA strives to meet three critical criteria in its measurement work: meaningfulness, credibility, and practicality (“Program evaluation,” n.d.). The first one ensures that measurement is coherent and comparable, the second guarantees endurance to criticism, and the last one secures scaling of the measurement to the organization’s needs and limitations (“Program evaluation,” n.d.). Therefore, the program evaluation process assists the EPA in fulfilling its utmost purpose of keeping public health and the environment safe.

Conflict Resolution and Consensus

Significantly, the EPA’s Conflict Prevention and Resolution Center, namely CPRC, serves as the Agency’s leading source for conflict resolution and consensus. Moreover, it offers services and solutions in alternative dispute resolution (ADR), environmental dispute resolution, consensus-building, and joint problem-solving (“About the CPRS,” n.d.). The CPRC provides training and assistance to EPA employees to help them work more efficiently. Each year, the CPRC reports to the Office of Management and Budget and the Council on Environmental Quality on the EPA’s use of, and key achievements in, environmental collaboration and conflict management (“About the CPRS,” n.d.). Therefore, the mission of the CPRS is to develop recommendations, prevent and resolve disputes, and gain consensus.

References

Amsler, L. B. (2016). Collaborative governance: Integrating management, politics, and law. Public Administration Review, 76(5), 700-711. Web.

Fischer, K. J. (2017). The power of the covenant idea for leadership, reform, and ethical behavior. The Journal of Value-Based Leadership, 10(2). Web.

Johnson, S. R. (2021). “We the People of Israel”: Covenant, Constitution, and the supposed biblical origins of modern democratic political thought. Journal of the Bible and its Reception, 8(2), 247-268. Web.

Jones, H. (2019). Searching for Statesmanship: A corpus-based analysis of a translated political discourse. Polis: The Journal for Ancient Greek and Roman Political Thought, 36(2), 216-241. Web.

Our mission and what we do. (n.d.). Web.

Overeem, P., & Bakker, F. E. (2019). Statesmanship beyond the modern state. Perspectives on Political Science, 48(1), 46-55. Web.

Prantl, J. (2021). Reuniting strategy and diplomacy for 21st century statecraft. Contemporary Politics, 1-19. Web.

Program evaluation and performance measurement at the EPA. (n.d.). Web.

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The Formation and Implementation of Public Policy
Governmental Programs and Influences on Them