School of Public Policy

The School of Public Policy Committee’s charge is to develop a blueprint and timeline for the creation of the Cornell School of Public Policy (SPP) as outlined in the vision statement of the Social Sciences Review Implementation Committee (SSIC). The goal is to articulate and install the necessary foundation for the school, including its research excellence, educational programming, faculty governance, public engagement programming, and financial support. The blueprint will include recommendations for building on areas of existing strength, making strategic investments, and prioritizing newly available resources to ensure that the new Cornell School of Public Policy becomes a prominent addition to the global public policy stage.

School of Public Policy Committee:

Name Title
Maria Fitzpatrick (Co-Chair) Professor, Department of Policy Analysis and Management; Director, Cornell Institute for Public Affairs; Associate Vice Provost for the Social Sciences
Tom Pepinsky (Co-Chair) Professor, Government
Peter Enns Associate Professor, Government; Executive Director, Roper Center for Public Opinion Research
Jamila Michener Associate Professor, Government
Sean Nicholson Professor, Policy Analysis and Management; Director, Sloan Program in Health Administration
Laura Tach Associate Professor, Policy Analysis and Management
John Siliciano Deputy Provost; Professor, Cornell Law School
Victoria White Project Manager, Office of the President

Committee email:

Update (February 2021)

The university has formed a faculty-led committee and launched a search for the founding dean of the School of Public Policy. Read more in the Cornell Chronicle.

Committee Update (November 2020)

Committee members have been laying the groundwork throughout the summer and fall for a world-class School of Public Policy (SPP) — one that builds upon Cornell’s existing deep well of scholarship in public policy and related disciplines. Drawing on the Social Sciences Implementation Committee’s final report (PDF), the SPP committee has identified six pillars of strength for the School of Public Policy: data science and technology policy, environmental and sustainability policy, health policy, human security, inequality and social policy, and politics and economics of development. The committee is assembling a robust blueprint for undergraduate, doctoral and master’s and professional degree programs, as well as finalizing principles for hiring and appointments in the new school. Its work on the school’s internal governance continues, including discussions with university leadership on a financial and organizational model to best support both the SPP and other units whose faculty will contribute to the school’s teaching, research and outreach missions. Going forward, the committee will also discuss research support for the school, along with structures to encourage increased public engagement activities and other innovative connections.

As this work continues, co-chairs Maria Fitzpatrick and Tom Pepinsky remain committed to engaging with the Cornell community on collaborative opportunities among the SPP and other academic units with natural links to public policy, leading to exciting possibilities for building a School of Public Policy unique to Cornell. Further announcements will be shared as the committee’s work progresses.