University of California, Riverside

School of Public Policy



Our Mission, Distinctions, History


Mission: Serving Inland Southern California and Beyond

Our mission is to train a new generation of forward-thinking public policy leaders equipped to address the complex, interrelated challenges of poverty, disease, illiteracy, climate change, energy security, pollution and more. Their training will be informed by (i) a diverse, interdisciplinary curriculum that emphasizes evidence-based policy research as well as cross-learning from both international and domestic problem-solving experiences, and (ii) a rich internship program that emphasizes experiential learning.

Distinctions: What Makes Us Unique

Three cross-cutting themes will define the School's intellectual character and distinguish it from public policy programs at other universities around the country:

Intersection of social and environmental policies

Emphasis on a range of social policy issues, particularly those associated with population growth and movement, as they affect—and are affected by—environmental policy.

Importance of regional policy-making

Emphasis on critical policy issues that transcend traditional administrative units (cities, counties, and states), such as air and water pollution and immigration, and that require coordinated policy-making across traditional jurisdictions.

Global-local connections

Emphasis on the similarity between the policy challenges facing inland Southern California and those facing other rapidly-growing regions around the world, particularly in emerging countries such as Brazil, China, India and Mexico. What lessons can communities in inland Southern California learn from policy solutions attempted in other countries? Promote a “think globally, act locally” mind-set among students.

History: Building on Our Strengths

UC Riverside Launches School of Public Policy

Official Press Release — September 24, 2012

“The school’s research will build on existing strengths at UCR as virtually every existing school and college at UCR has assets that will interact with and help to strengthen the school. These synergies include such interests as higher education policy; air, water, and soil quality; biodiversity; sustainable suburban development; crime and justice; economics; political science; anthropology; and the School of Medicine.” —Chancellor Timothy P. White

Regents Approve UCR School of Public Policy

Official Press Release — September 17, 2008

UC Riverside's location in the fast-growing Inland Empire of Southern California uniquely positions the campus to educate future policy-makers and conduct research in issues related to immigration, population growth and environmental policy, the Board of Regents said today as it unanimously approved the establishment of a School of Public Policy.

School of Public Policy Approved

Inside UCR — September 24, 2008

The UC Board of Regents unanimously approved the establishment of a UCR School of Public Policy at its Sept. 17 meeting, citing the campus' location in the fast-growing Inland Empire as a unique opportunity to educate future policy-makers and conduct research in issues related to immigration, population growth and environmental policy.

UCR approves new School of Public Policy

The Desert Sun — September 18, 2008

UC Riverside students will be able to study for master's and doctoral degrees in specialized areas like immigration policy and environmental regulation at a School of Public Policy approved Wednesday by the University of California Board of Regents.

Public policy school approved at UCR

The Press-Enterprise — September 18, 2008

The University of California Board of Regents approved plans Wednesday for a School of Public Policy at UC Riverside. The school, which will admit its first class in 2010, will prepare students for careers in government and nonprofit agencies, and to research public-policy problems faced by the Inland area, ranging from alleviating traffic congestion to improving air quality.

More Information 

General Campus Information

University of California, Riverside
900 University Ave.
Riverside, CA 92521
Tel: (951) 827-1012

Contact Information

School of Public Policy
Anil B. Deolalikar
Founding Dean
Professor of Economics

Student Affairs
Tel: (951) 827-2334
E-mail: jolene.sedita@ucr.edu

Dean’s Office
4133 CHASS Interdisciplinary South
Tel: (951) 827-5564
E-mail: spp-dean@ucr.edu

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