Foundations in International Public Policy (FIPP)

The FIPP certificate program is designed for those applicants to the Master of International Public Policy (MIPP) program who are presenting well with their academic credentials but have not earned university credits in one or more of the required pre-requisite undergraduate courses.

  • Introductory Economics (micro and macro)
  • Introductory Political Science
  • Introductory Statistics

MIPP applicants may choose to upgrade their academic credentials by achieving one or more of the above-mentioned degree level credit courses at a university prior to the start of the MIPP degree. Or they may be offered conditional admission to the degree based on achieving one or more of the above university level courses, in addition to the FIPP or they may be offered admission conditional on successful completion of the Foundations in International Public Policy (FIPP) certificate.

The FIPP is a non-credit certificate program.

2023 Program Details

The FIPP takes place in August, just before the start of the MIPP degree in September.  It is offered in-person, at the Balsillie School of International Affairs. As such, it is also a good introduction to and rehearsal with ideas and tools that students will encounter in MIPP courses. Many students will take the FIPP as an introduction to their degree, whether it is required or not.

The FIPP content reflects the multidisciplinary demands of most policy problems. The case studies highlight the contributions of economics, political science, theoretical and empirical analysis to the formulation, implementation, and assessment of public policy.

Beginning with Political Science, suppose that your career goal involves a role in what we will come to call a policy sub-system, loosely for now, the people who do something that contributes to policy change. You’ll be better at your work from knowing the process, how policy change comes about. Who else is in the policy sub-system? How do they interact? How is competition over the outcome of policy making resolved?

Economic globalization makes the international public domain, a space where transnational policy sub-systems reckon with collective action problems more consequential. A policy advisor is better equipped to work on any policy problem if they understand the economic context in which it is embedded. Practically, this understanding entails knowledge of trends and patterns in both economic and non-economic characteristics of the policy context.

A background knowledge of statistics is required because policy making relies on quantitative evidence in two stages. Policy formulation is the art of designing a plan to achieve a desirable outcome.

It is not enough to anticipate the direction of a policy impact. The policy advisor must be able to evaluate its material importance. Public policy changes presuppose features a desirable outcome.

Here is what some of our successful FIPP graduates have to say:

As an international student the FIPP program gave me good insight as to what to expect in the Master of International Public Policy degree and I was able to find tune my skills to be more successful in the program. I would have to say one of my biggest take aways of course is the opportunity to get to know some of my future classmates before the degree started. it was a great ice breaker.
—Heba Hamseh, FIPP 2022

I can't imagine just walking straight into MIPP without FIPP. It has given me an idea of what to expect in MIPP and I can say I am prepared for it. Another thing, the teamwork and bonding among us, as participants within that short time was solid - it will be helpful throughout graduate school. I would definitely encourage future students to sign up for FIPP.
—Adwoa Konadu-Yiadom, FIPP 2022

The FIPP program helped me in preparing both mentally and academically for the upcoming year. It sharpened my knowledge of concepts and themes that I had a vague understanding of and gave me an insight into new ideas and theories that I had only encountered in passing. It has helped me feel confident and excited about going into the MIPP program.
—Alessandro DiRaimo, FIPP 2022

About the Professor

Dr. Terry Levesque completed baccalaureate studies in Economics and Political Science at the University of New Brunswick. He earned a Masters of Science in Industrial Administration (Economics) and a PhD in Politics and Political Economy from Carnegie Mellon University. He has held appointments at the University of Alberta, Carnegie Mellon University and Laurier. He lectures undergraduate and graduate students statistics and econometrics. He has served as Department Chair twice, proposed the School of International Policy and Governance and served as its Associate Dean from 2010-14.

As a researcher, drawn to the linkages between economics and political science and economics and marketing, Levesque has come to value and look for ways to work across disciplines. He is currently investigating multilevel causal models of the determinants of malnutrition in children.

Dr. Terry Levesque
Professor Emeritus, Wilfrid Laurier University
See profile

How to apply for the FIPP

The next FIPP certificate program will take place August 8th, 2023, to August 31st, 2023.

Students admitted to the FIPP certificate program will attend class from Monday to Friday for six hours each day, with regular breaks throughout the day.

Tuition for MIPP students is $1000.00 CAD.
Tuition for Non-MIPP students if $1500.00 CAD.

To apply, send completed applications to Maureen Ferraro at mferraro@wlu.ca. Application forms can be found here.

Dr. Terry Levesque
Professor Emeritus, Wilfrid Laurier University
See profile

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