Faculty Leaders Program

Professional Development in Policy Research & Analysis

Photos by Diane Baldwin/RAND Corporation

Through the Next Generation Initiative’s Faculty Leaders Program, the Pardee RAND Graduate School seeks to build diversity in public policy through strong engagement of faculty leaders across the United States, and in particular at colleges and universities serving students underrepresented in public policy.

Faculty Leader Fellowships are awarded to 12–16 selected faculty to participate in a week-long policy analysis summer program organized and led by the Pardee RAND Graduate School.

“We were able to engage actively in the learning process by participating in sessions that fostered critical thinking, analytical reasoning, complex problem-solving, and multidisciplinary collaborative research planning.”

As the Pardee RAND Graduate School trains graduates who will develop public policy in this country and around the world, we are committed to help ensure that a diversity of voices and perspectives are an integral part of the policymaking process. Part of that commitment is drawing that diversity into public policy education to create the next generation of leaders with a range of voices and perspectives.

The program is designed to have a number of facets:

  • a “short course” in the methods of policy analysis modeled after the curriculum of our doctoral program
  • an opportunity for each participant to apply these tools to a policy issue of their choice with mentorship and input from RAND policy researchers in areas of common interest
  • an introduction to the Pardee RAND Graduate School, its faculty and advanced doctoral fellows in policy analysis
  • a forum in which to network with each other and past participants in the program

The intent is for participating faculty to return to their home institutions armed with new tools to effect change in their communities and to inspire their students to consider careers and advanced study in public policy analysis.

This year's participants will work with their assigned mentors on a policy project of their choosing. Final products may include:

  • Op-Ed/Commentary
  • Grant proposal/research aims
  • Developing new course or modifing existing course to bring in policy elements (learning objectives, readings, classroom discussions & activities)
  • Manuscript (e.g., journal article, book chapter)
  • Research plan (e.g., methodology, policy framework)
  • Community engagement effort (e.g., community presentation; community based participatory research methodology, stakeholder engagement plan)

The 2021 program is structured as a virtual series of workshops July 19-21, July 28, and August 6. We anticipate that the 2022 program will be held in person in Santa Monica, CA.

How to Apply

Admission is competitive; applicants are vetted based on their interest in learning more about incorporating the concepts of policy analysis into their teaching and research, as shown through the following components:

  • Online application
  • Professional bio and résumé/CV
  • One letter of recommendation, preferably from a Dean or department chair
  • Two essays

The deadline for 2021 has passed. Applications for 2022 will open in January. If you would like to be notified when the application for our next session becomes active, please email us at facultyleaders@rand.org.

Learn More

For more information about the Pardee RAND Faculty Leaders Program, contact

Amy Nabel
Program and Compliance Analyst
(310) 393-0411, ext. 6523

Stefanie Howard
Assistant Dean for Admissions and Strategic Initiatives
(310) 393-0411, ext. 8224

Email: facultyleaders@rand.org

Institutions Represented (2013-2021)

Note: in 2020, we held a series of virtual alumni workshops

Our 106 Faculty Leaders have come from 62 institutions