6 P’s of Policy

Adapted from POLICY Working Paper Series No. 11 THE POLICY CIRCLE: A Framework for Analyzing the Components of Family Planning, Reproductive Health, Maternal Health, and HIV/AIDS Policies,Karen Hardee, Imelda Feranil, Jill Boezwinkle, Benjamin Clark.

Components of the 6 P's of Policy

The 6 P's of Policy uses “P” designations to help users remember the six main components of policy. First, policymaking occurs in varying political, social, cultural, and economic settings that affect how policies are developed and implemented. The arrows in the 6 P's of Policy join each of the six components with the other components to depict the complex and nonlinear nature of policy.

Challenges can be found in each of the six “Ps.” Perhaps a problem was not well articulated through adequate policy analysis. Perhaps there is strong opposition or differences of opinion on how to address the problem. There may have been little or no effort to consult those who will be affected by the policy change. Perhaps the policy document is vague and requires an implementation strategy. Resources for implementation may be inadequate, etc.

Furthermore, the 6 P's of Policy does not give an indication of the time each component will take, because it depends on the context and the issue to be addressed. Clearly, small or lower-level policy changes may take a shorter period of time than larger policy changes. Experience suggests that “in order to complete at least one cycle of formulation, implementation, and reformulation and to obtain a reasonably accurate portrait of program success and failure,” (Sabatier and Jenkins-Smith, 1993: 16).

Problems may need to be addressed by more than one policy. What is considered first as an adequate policy solution may not succeed, and the problem may need to be addressed through further policy reform—going back to the “Problem” and beginning the process again.

Using the 6 P's of Policy and related tools can help identify what aspects of policy or the policy process need to be addressed to solve an identified problem.

Click here for the whole document (doc provided in an email)

[TODO: Clickable links in the circle]

The Problems that arise requiring policy attention. The problem is at the center of policymaking. Problems requiring policy attention abound and can be identified from many sources.

The People who participate in policy and the Places they represent. Once a problem has been identified, it is vital to understand the people (or stakeholders and stakeholder institutions) who participate in the process of policymaking, the places inside and outside the government that they represent in policymaking, their views on the “problem,” and the various roles they play in policymaking.

The Process of policymaking. The process of policymaking includes:
- Framing the “problem” (issue framing)
- Getting the issue on the policy agenda (agenda setting)
- Formulating the policy (policy formulation)

The Price Tag of the policy (the cost of policy options and how resources are allocated) Policies without resources allocated for implementation do little more than sit on a shelf.

The Paper produced (actual laws and policies) Policy formulation culminates in promulgation of written policies or laws that provide a broad framework for programs.

The Programs that result from implementing policies and their Performance in achieving policy goals and objectives.