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Spring Exercise is a two-week long simulation offering students an intense challenge of intellectual integration and practical application spanning the disciplines represented in the MPP core. The exercise gives students practice at applying core tools and concepts in a setting and at a pace approximating professional reality. It thus serves as a capstone to the first-year core and a bridge to the second-year Policy Analysis Exercise and subsequent professional work.
During Spring Exercise, students are assigned to five-person teams and tasked with developing actionable policy recommendations for a senior decision-maker. Students conduct research, attend expert panels and presentations by their core faculty linking the topic to the core courses, and spend a lot of time with their team grappling with the topic and weighing potential solutions. At the end of the two weeks, teams are required to deliver a detailed, data-backed briefing and compile a briefing book for a senior decision-maker in a simulated but realistic policy process.
Past Spring Exercise topics have included:
Read about MPP students' 2014 Spring Exercise experience, identifying strategies for improving public education in the city of Boston.