Javascript is currently not supported, or is disabled by this browser. Please enable Javascript for full functionality.

Skip to Main Content
University of Pittsburgh    
2023-2024 Graduate & Professional Studies Catalog 
    
 
  Jun 12, 2024
 
2023-2024 Graduate & Professional Studies Catalog

Public Administration, MPA


Today’s policymakers require analytical skills from a variety of disciplines: quantitative, economic, political, and organizational. Students in the policy research & analysis major enjoy access to a rich array of resources to help them prepare for careers in both the public and private sectors. Recent graduates of our program have gone on to work in such careers as budget examiners for the state of New York, analysts for the Government Accountability Office and the U.S. Mint and consultants for the leading firm Booz Allen Hamilton.

Motivated and inquisitive people looking to acquire the technical skills and knowledge to contribute to research and policymaking decisions will appreciate our curriculum. It is infused with a rich variety of interdisciplinary viewpoints to give students a well-informed view of policy analysis that is both national and international in scope.

Required Courses: 21 credits


Along with the 48 credits of  Required MPA courses, all students must complete a 300-hour internship with approval from GSPIA career services.

Energy and Environment Concentration: 12 credits


Energy & Environment explores the politics and policies of the worldwide energy industry, examining ways to meet global energy needs in a sustainable, environmentally conscious way. Pittsburgh is a global epicenter of one of the biggest energy revolutions of the 21st century - the shale gas boom. New technologies like “fracking” are making billions of dollars of natural gas accessible to world markets for the first time, generating thousands of new jobs from Europe to North America. Western Pennsylvania sits atop one of the largest and most productive shale deposits anywhere on the planet, raising major questions about how to extract the gas responsibly, how to protect communities from environmental harm, and how to tax and regulate the rapid growth. GSPIA Students study the economics of the global energy industry, environmental sustainability, and regulatory policy in one of the world’s best living laboratories. Graduates are prepared for jobs at environmental protection agencies, energy corporations, and a host of local, state, and national government offices that make energy policy.

Take three of the following five courses:

Governance and International Public Management Concentration (12 credits)


***On August 8, 2023 the following Governance and International Public Management course information was updated in the published catalog. In an effort to provide accurate information the update was made on August 8, 2023.***

Governance and International Public Management provides a comparative perspective on international development, focusing on the ways in which public and nonprofit organizations must adapt to meet the different cultural, political, and economic circumstances of the communities they serve.

It explores how public agencies around the globe, faced with similar problems like poverty, illiteracy, and inequality, have addressed those issues differently in different countries. Students confront the challenges of implementing complex policies in a global, multicultural context. This major focuses on developing the management and analytical skills necessary to take leadership roles in the multilateral sector, governments abroad, or any organization that delivers services internationally. Graduates are well-prepared to pursue careers at the United Nations, the U.S. Agency for International Development, and similar organizations.

Public & Nonprofit Management Concentration (12 credits)


Public service is a discipline practiced at many levels: local, national and international often with ripple effects across each. Through grassroots contributions and global applications, GSPIA students pursuing a public & nonprofit management major acquire a deep understanding of the many contexts in which public and nonprofit organizations operate. Many look forward to the opportunity to leverage change in a mixed economy.

Our curriculum stresses responsible leadership and our students develop the skills to diagnose leadership challenges and opportunities from a variety of ethical and moral frameworks. Our interdisciplinary approach draws from a variety of fields such as philosophy, law, organizational design and political science. Our approach gives students the skills they need to meet the challenges of a world in which services increasingly span boundaries among business, government and nonprofit organizations.

Policy Research and Analysis Concentration (12 credits)


Today’s policymakers require analytical skills from a variety of disciplines: quantitative, economic, political, and organizational. Students in the policy research & analysis major enjoy access to a rich array of resources to help them prepare for careers in both the public and private sectors. Recent graduates of our program have gone on to work in such careers as budget examiners for the state of New York, analysts for the Government Accountability Office and the U.S. Mint and consultants for the leading firm Booz Allen Hamilton.

Motivated and inquisitive people looking to acquire the technical skills and knowledge to contribute to research and policymaking decisions will appreciate our curriculum. It is infused with a rich variety of interdisciplinary viewpoints to give students a well-informed view of policy analysis that is both national and international in scope.

Social Policy Concentration (12 credits)


Gain the quantitative, political, administrative and legal skills to analyze social needs and policy impact on human lives worldwide. You’ll learn to monitor, evaluate, and communicate data to convey the consequences of policy development and implementation.

Urban Affairs and Planning Concentration (12 credits)


The major in Urban Affairs and Planning takes a city-focused perspective on urban development. More than half of the world’s people now live in urban areas, raising important questions about how governments should meet the public’s needs for transportation, health and sanitation, education, and other essential services.

As the developing world urbanizes, and the developed world undergoes redevelopment, booming cities like Shanghai, Mumbai, Buenos Aires, and Johannesburg face critical challenges, including poverty, homelessness, and pollution, while other cities in developed countries, like Newcastle and Pittsburgh, face similar challenges of their own. The concentration prepares students to confront those problems while developing valuable skills in Geographic Information Systems (GIS), regional economic planning, sustainable development management, and social justice in the context of urban development.

Elective/Minor Courses: 15 credits


48 Credits


MPA Joint Degrees


Students pursing an MPA have the option to do a Joint Degree:

MPA/JD  

MPA/MIS  

MPA/MPH  

MPA/MSW  

Quantitative Economics/Public Administration, MS/MPA  

 



Catalog Navigation