Policy Development in Newfoundland and Labrador

Public policy is a purposeful course of action taken to respond to a perceived problem affecting a society at large or a specific group within that society. It is formulated through a specific political process, and adopted, implemented, and enforced by a public agency.

Generally public policy development is an analytical process which begins with the occurrence or observation of an issue which requires the attention of those affected by the problem and/or those who represent those impacted. The policy process requires consultation and research in order to thoroughly understand the dimensions of the problem; and a coordinated effort between governments and other stakeholders to select and implement viable policy solutions. Once implemented, it is important that policies and the programs delivered to implement the policies be regularly monitored and then evaluated to determine whether they are meeting their intended purpose. Good public policy making takes a “lessons learned” approach, whereby decision makers are accountable for using policy evaluation to strengthen current or redesign new approaches to policy problems.