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Pepperdine | School of Public Policy

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Why Public Policy?

Today's effective public leaders understand that solving our toughest public problems demands a well-rounded understanding of policy analysis seen through the specific cultural and historical lenses in the places they work. Like no other program, the Pepperdine School of Public Policy offers students this comprehensive approach to policy-making—one that connects coursework in policy assessment with instruction in America's exceptional founding principles and the timeless conceptions of government provided by the world's greatest thinkers. We graduate students who are uniquely aware that to develop sustainable policy, it must be informed by the public they serve.


Ted McAllister - Pepperdine University

Cross Sector

Supporting leaders across the government, business, and nonprofit sectors.

"Pepperdine uniquely understands that public policy is created not only by government institutions, but also by citizen leaders in the business and nonprofit sectors—often in collaboration. We teach the skills and perspective necessary to prepare these cross sector leaders."

Ted McAllister, Edward L. Gaylord Chair and Associate Professor of Public Policy

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Luisa Blanco - Pepperdine University

Viewpoint Diversity

A unique liberal arts approach to prepare cross-sector public leaders, who empirically understand problems and respect viewpoint diversity, religious liberty, and morality.

"I challenge my students to question the current system and to be able to form their own judgment and take thoughtful action on specific issues. I know that through the concepts and material covered in class, my students will be effective agents of change, play an important role in society, and will look back to the unique moral and ethical approach they experienced at Pepperdine when considering policy decisions."

Luisa Blanco, Associate Professor of Public Policy


Rod Gould - Pepperdine University

Public Engagement

Help build stronger communities in California by promoting public participation in local governance.

"The Davenport Institute at the School of Public Policy is at the forefront of a wave of innovation in the way local governments relate to citizens. Its focus on best practices and emerging techniques in civic engagement gives hope to better policy-making and governance. Civic engagement is a game changer for the good and the Davenport Institute is leading the change."

Rod Gould, Former City Manager, City of Santa Monica, California

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Oluwatomi Jaiyeola - Pepperdine University

Ethical Leadership

Curriculum setting a dialog across courses between the conservative but morally neutral law and economics tradition on the one hand, and on the other, the morally challenging ethical issues whose relationship to specific policies and programs is often not concrete and specific or at most, left vague and ambiguous. 

"I had a passion to serve and studying public policy inspired me to pursue that passion in an effective way. Today, I strive to help societies provide more equal opportunity in labor market policies, mobility of labor, and gender issues for all their citizens, from Latin America to East Asia."

Ximena Del Carpio ('98, MPP/MBA '00)

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