Contained in this book is a series of essays which investigate the usefulness of history in understanding the creation and evolution of government policy. The essays examine public policy and programs at state and
federal levels in various policy areas, including social security, public health, water management, education, and energy. Collectively, they suggest that public officials and policy analysts would enhance their understanding of policy development by studying policy-oriented history. This book is geared primarily to public historians, history graduate students, planners, and policy analysts.
"Now we have in this valuable book a demonstration of policy history's emerging maturity. It is absolutely essential reading, especially for practitioners, as well as for academics and their students, for there is rich and concentrated instruction in most of these 212 pages on how not only to conceive of and understand the policy
history enterprise, but on how actually to be a consulting policy historian in everyday practice with clients in real-life fields." — Robert Kelley, University of California-Santa Barbara, The Public Historian