Through a comparative examination of institutions and testing theories of the use of policy analysis, Hird draws conclusions that are more useful than those derived from single cases. Hird examines npartisan policy research organizations established by and operating in U.S. state legislatures - one of the most intense of political environments - to determine whether and how npartisan policy research can survive in that harsh climate. By first detailing how npartisan policy analysis organizations came to be and what they do, and then determining what state legislators want from them, he presents a rigorous statistical analysis of those agencies in all 50 states and from a survey of 800 state legislators. This thoroughly comprehensive look at policymaking at the state level concludes that npartisan policy analysis institutions can play an important role - as long as they remain scrupulously npartisan.
John A. Hird is associate professor of political science and director of the Center for Public Policy and Administration at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst; author of The Political Economy of Environmental Risk; and coauthor with Michael Reese and Matthew Shilvock of Controversies in American Public Policy (3rd edition).