Title

Shaping U.S. Foreign Aid: Incrementalism, Policy Networks and International Food Aid Policy

Document Type

Thesis

Publication Date

2010

Advisor

Kay Wolsborn, Political Science

Abstract

As the United States is currently the world's largest donor of food aid, U.S. foreign food aid policy's goals and characteristics are heavily critiqued. The theory of incrementalism and the network approach to public policy formation are applied to U.S. foreign food aid policy to first understand how these policy formation methods employed by policy makers influence the goals and characteristics of food aid policy. Contradicting goals and ties to domestic interests and foreign policy initiatives are identified as characteristics of U.S. foreign food aid policy. The policy network approach is applied by examining Congressional hearings concerning U.S. food aid and determining the presence of actors and the structure of the policy network. The decision making methods employed by policy makers and the resulting policy output is then examined through the lens of incrementalism. The policy network surrounding the formation of U.S. foreign food aid as well as the incremental methods of policy analysis employed by policy makers influence and maintain the goals and characteristics of United States foreign food aid policy.

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