How to Create a Good Policy Paper

Posted date: July 27, 2018 how-to-write-a-policy-paper


The essence of the policy essay lies in analyzing the political problem and proposing ways to solve it. Writing of works on sociology and political science is an important part of the educational process organization since it allows to significantly innovate modern social and political education, and, consequently, to realize the tasks of its modernization. Therefore, it is very important to know how to write a policy paper correctly.

Properly organized work on writing a policy essay contributes to the acquisition of skills in the search and analysis of various sources of information, forms and develops cognitive abilities, skills of self-organization and self-control, thereby contributing to the formation of a future specialist as a subject of professional activity.

Writing of the policy essay is aimed at developing the personal potential of students, since it is associated with the activities focused on understanding the various problems of the social and political development of the society and finding ways to resolve them. Cognitive activity of students in the performance of this work allows them to realize their personal potential, the knowledge, and skills that they already possess. It contributes to the acquisition and assimilation of professional knowledge, which means the development of personal knowledge, that is, self-actualization of the student's personality in the learning process.

Such activities are directed toward the formation of professional knowledge and ability of their practical application. An important criterion for assessing the quality of professional knowledge is the student's ability to integrate the acquired social and political knowledge into a single professional scheme, to realize the place of his/her own innovative ideas and the possibility of their implementation in other professional fields.


One of the main tasks is the transition from imitative activity to creative activity, where the ability to see the problem is especially valued, to set a goal, to achieve its fulfillment by one's efforts without the direct participation of the teacher, but according to his or her instructions. Students consciously strive to achieve the goal set in the task, using all their mental and physical abilities, and this allows them to learn to manage their own time, training loads, and develop self-reliance in the learning process.

The work on a policy essay assumes:

  • the ability to find information and work with it;
  • in-depth study of individual topics;
  • the preparation and presentation of research results.


In the course of the work, the student acquires the skills of individual analysis of text materials. These can be works of individual authors, including classical literature of various historical periods on a particular topic of research, works of outstanding thinkers of the 20th and 21st centuries, articles written by contemporary authors and published by leading social, political, economic, and legal domestic and foreign journals. In addition, you can use the materials posted on official Internet sites.

Your task is not just to select the material on the topic of your interest and get acquainted with it. You should think over this information, determine its significance and problems, see the author's approach to solving problems of social and political development of the society and show your ability to do an independent analysis of the text and work with basic concepts and categories on the issues.

When writing a policy essay, you must learn how to form your own opinion and assess different ideas. It will allow you to develop a personal position in relation to various problems of modern life of the society and realize the possibility of finding alternative solutions to political problems.


Before you start writing a paper, you need to make a work plan:

  • choose the social or political problem of modern society in accordance with your interests;
  • get acquainted with the necessary volume of literary material, focusing on the literature of the last three years, drawing up extracts from the books, articles and official Internet sites;
  • create  a detailed plan of the paper, highlighting the introduction, the body of the text with paragraphs and the conclusions;
  • determine the time periods for work on your paper.

Your essay should end with a list of references.


It is necessary to formulate a political problem that will be analyzed in your work in the introduction. Explain the relevance and social significance of the chosen topic. Identify the goals and objectives of the work.

Chapters and paragraphs of the body of the text should be directed to the consideration of problematic topics.

Each paragraph of the body of the text assumes a detailed study of a particular issue of the subject and a consistent presentation of the structure of the text material with mandatory references to the source. In general, the content of this part of the paper should reflect the positions of individual authors, the comparative characteristics of these positions, and the identification of the key issues of discourse on the topic chosen for the research. You ought to show your fluency in basic concepts and categories. It can be illustrated by using tables, graphs, charts, and citations.

You should formulate your personal position in relation to the problem and propose your own solutions in conclusions. It is advisable to draw general conclusions on the topic of the work and note its relevance and social significance once again.


Very often, political essays are accompanied by presentations. A series of slides convey the content of the topic of the research, its main issue, and social significance.

Slides can significantly structure the content of the material and at the same time, focus on the logic of its presentation. The presentation should contain diagrams and tables. You can also use the cartographic material, graphics, photographs, drawings and other necessary materials.

Each slide should be annotated, that is, it should be accompanied by brief explanations of the thing, which it illustrates. After the presentation of the slides of the essay, you must give your assessment of the social significance of the studied problem situation and answer the questions.

The choice of the form of writing is your prerogative. In many ways, this choice is determined by the student's educational and cognitive activity and personal position. The technical performance of the work and its operationalization make it possible to achieve the implementation of the goals set by the educational process.


It is very important to choose a topical subject. Here is a list of the most interesting and relevant themes for your policy paper.

  • Understanding the mechanisms of power.
  • Use of the methods of applied psychology and sociology in practical political work.
  • Globalization and redistribution of power and resources in the world society.
  • Information security and its main problems, and prospects for their solution.
  • Modern political struggle for world energy resources.
  • Religion as an instrument of politics. History and modernity.
  • Basic methods and principles of political advertising.
  • Public relations in politics: main technologies and examples of their application.
  • Technologies of using the Internet in the modern political struggle.
  • Modern information technologies as a tool for manipulating
  • Forms of social control in modern society.
  • Modern forms of social inequality.
  • Myths of modern society.
  • Demographic processes in the context of globalization.
  • Features of modern youth culture.
  • Social guarantees and protection of young people.

Using one of these topics and recommendations on how to write a policy paper, you can create a good essay.