Welcome to the School of Public Policy!

The School of Public Policy (SPP) is a dynamic part of OSU’s educational and research mission. Our faculty members provide undergraduate training across the fields of Economics, Political Science, Public Policy and Sociology. We also offer nationally accredited graduate degrees and certificates in Public Policy.

Our interdisciplinary and applied approach provides cutting edge training and education, research fostering knowledge and understanding, and evidence-based solutions to the most pressing social, economic, and policy issues of our time. Our faculty members are leaders in Oregon, the nation, and the world on topics of collaborative governance, education policy and inequality, labor economics, constitutional law, energy policy, crime and justice, social services, rural policy, and marine and environmental studies among many other areas. Their expertise informs their award-winning teaching and research.

We are pleased highlight our dynamic and diverse student body. Undergraduate students from all areas of Oregon, and various class, ethnic, and cultural backgrounds take advantage of our training in critical social, political, and economic frameworks. Our graduate students pursue their Master’s in Public Policy (MPP) through residential and online programs. We also offer the online Executive MPP program for working professionals. Students pursuing their PhD in Public Policy come from countries all over the world and all areas of the US. We benefit immensely from the global perspective of students, with national backgrounds including: Pakistan, Nepal, Columbia, Argentina, Bangladesh, Cameroon, Nigeria, Egypt, Russia, Ukraine, Afghanistan, Qatar, Turkey, and Panama, among others.

SPP is thrilled to be a part of a truly 21st century educational and research mission, aided by our cutting-edge offerings through OSU’s Ecampus programs. Through these online,  asynchronous platforms, we provide undergraduate and graduate training and degrees to students all over the nation and the world. In addition to our Ecampus MPP and Executive MPP degrees, we offer Graduate Certificates in Rural Policy and Energy Policy. We will soon also offer a general Policy Analysis certificate.

Looking forward, we will continue to benefit from SPP’s academic excellence, while further developing our connections with political, industry, and though leaders and decision-makers in Oregon and beyond. For example, expanding the capacity of our in-house OSU Policy Analysis Center (OPAL). OPAL contracts with community, non-profit, and governmental agencies to conduct original policy and community research, while also training students with hands-on policy analysis skills.

SPP offers you an incredible opportunity to think about your place in our social world and the training and space to develop your own social science and policy analytic skills. Our passion for learning, service to others, and critical inquiry make us who we are, and we look forward to working with all who share this vision.


Catherine Bolzendahl

Director, School of Public Policy

Policy is all about the way we make decisions in both private and public contexts.  Faculty and students in the School of Public Policy are interested in a wide variety of contexts and choices and are particularly interested in advancing the social and policy related dimensions of the three areas of distinction identified by Oregon State University:

  • Advancing the Science of Sustainable Ecosystems
  • Improving Health and Wellness
  • Promoting Economic Growth and Social Progress

You will find engaged faculty who are innovative teachers, challenging scholars, and willing to work one-on-one with you as you build your future.  You will find students who challenge the way you think about the world, your education, and yourself.

Classes are interactive and options are many – both on campus and online – to bring together both the study and practice of your interest in the social world. 

Faculty expertise ranges across all three areas of distinction at OSU from the economics of wine and beer to the political implications of the rise of China; from the economics, politics, and institutionalization of adaption to climate change to the causes and consequences of food insecurity; from the sources of crime and deviance to the legal, social, and economic implications of infidelity in sport marriages. 

Equity, Inclusion, Diversity

The School of Public Policy is committed to providing training, service, and research that advance accountability, diversity, integrity, respect, and social responsibility, in serving the people of Oregon, the nation and the world. Learn more about our Equity, Inclusion and Diversity efforts here.