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Gaming Political Science

Public Administration and Budgeting

Cap and Trade Simulation

Available from the Environmental Protection Agency, in this simulation students "act as an environmental compliance officer at an electric power plant located in the fictitious country of "Ecoland." They are asked to develop a compliance strategy that will allow your facility to meet emission limits (or cap) while still generating enough electricity to meet customer demand." The two simulations available cover sulfur dioxide for acid rain and carbon dioxide for climate change. Available for free.

The Hospital Performance Game

Researchers at Oxford, Utrecht, and Utrecht Medical Center developed a free, online game where players learn about the difficulties of managing performance in the public center. Specifically, players get put in the hot seat of a hospital managers who gets one year to turn around the performance or face the axe. The game is completely free to play, only requiring lecturers to sign up and enroll their students. For more information and a copy of the Hospital Performance Game Manual, contact Scott Douglas: s.c.douglas@uu.nl 

Articles, Books, and Conference Papers

Bots, Pieter W.G., F. Pieter Wagenaar and Rolf Willemse. 2010. “Assimilation of Public Policy Concepts Through Role-Play.” Simulation and Gaming 41(5): 743-766. Abstract

Boyne, Shawn Marie. 2012. "Crisis in the Classroom: Using Simulations to Enhance Decision-Making Skills." Journal of Legal Education 62(2): 311-322. Abstract

Campbell, Heather E., and Barbara C. McCabe. 2002. “Fun with Economics: Simulating Theory to Stimulate Learning.” Journal of Public Affairs Education 8(2): 131-9. Abstract

Dede, Martha J. 2002. “Building a Public Personnel System for the City of Freedonia: A New Approach to Teaching Human Resources Management in an MPA Program.” Journal of Public Affairs Education 8(4): 275-85. Abstract

Douglas, Scott, Christopher Hoo, Tom Overmans, and Floor Scheepers. 2019. "Gaming the System: building an online management game to spread and gather insights into the dynamics of performance management systems." Public Management Review 21(10): 1560-1576. Abstract

Garrison, Jean A., Steven B. Redd, and Ralph G. Carter. 2010. "Energy Security Under Conditions of Uncertainty: Simulating a Comparative Bureaucratic Politics Approach." Journal of Political Science Education 6(1): 19-48. Abstract

Goodman, Doug. 2008. “Problem-Based Learning in the MPA Curriculum.” Journal of Public Affairs Education 14(2): 253-70. Abstract

Grummel, John A. 2003. "Using Simulation to Teach Decision-Making within the Policy Process." PS: Political Science and Politics 36(4): 787-789. Abstract

Higgins, Richard. 1988. “Federal Budgeting: A Simulation Exercise.” Teaching Political Science 15(3)

Hobbs, Heidi H. and Dario V. Moreno. 2004. “Simulating Globalization: Oil in Chad.” International Studies Perspectives 5(3): 231-239. Abstract

Howell, Jude. 1992. “Using Role Play as a Teaching Method.” Teaching Public Administration 12(1): 69-75.

Hu, Qian, and Erik Johnston, Libby Hemphill, Rashmi Krishnamurthy, and Ajay Vinze. 2012. “Exploring the Role of Interactive Computer Simulations in Public Administration Education.” Journal of Public Affairs Education 18(3): 513-530. Abstract

Levy, Dena, and Susan Orr. 2014. "Balancing the Books: Analyzing the Impact of a Federal Budget Deliberative Simulation on Student Learning and Opinion." Journal of Political Science Education 10(1): 62-80. Abstract

Mallinson, Daniel J. 2018. "California Budget Simulation." Journal of Political Science Education 14(3): 418-421. Abstract

Newman, Meredith Ann. 1996. “Practicing What We Teach: Beyond the Lecture in a Public Administration Class.” Journal of Public Administration Education 2(1): 16-29. Abstract

O’Reilly, Patricia. 2013. “Implementing and Assessing Student Performance Skills and Learning: A Policy Role-Playing Exercise.” International Journal of Education 5(1): 103-19. Abstract

Orr, Susan E., and Dena B. Levy. 2012. "Balancing the Books: Assessing the Impact of a Federal Budget Deliberative Simulation." Paper presented at the APSA Teaching and Learning Conference, Washington, DC, February 17-19.  

Parrish, John M., and Devra Schwartz. 2019. "Ethics Through Earthquakes: Using University Administration as a Resource for Simulation Exercises." Journal of Political Science Education DOI

Rinfret, Sara R. 2012. “Simulating City Councils: Increasing Student Awareness and Involvement.” PS: Political Science and Politics 45(3): 513-5. Abstract

Ritchie, George N. 1984. “Development of Atlantis: A Simulation Exercise for Training Purposes.” Teaching Public Administration 4(2): 23-43. Abstract

Schafer, Josephine Gatti. 2016. "Making Role-Playing Real." Teaching Public Administration 34(2): 150-158. Abstract

Silvia, Chris. 2012. “The Impact of Simulations on Higher-Level Learning.” Journal of Public Affairs Education 18(2): 397-422. Abstract

Taylor, Charles D. 2011. “Budget Conflict in Banjo Crossing: Using a Classroom Simulation to Teach the Politics of Budgeting.” PS: Political Science and Politics 44(3): 641-7. Abstract

Wakelee, Daniel, and Tiina Itkonen. 2013. “The Politics of School District Budgeting: Using Simulations to Enhance Student Learning.” Journal of Political Science Education 9(2): 236-48. Abstract

Wallin, Bruce A. 2005. “A Federal Deficit Reduction Simulation: Learning Politics and Policy in Budgetary Context.” PS: Political Science and Politics 38(3): 407-9. Abstract

Wechsler, Barton, and Dana Lee Baker. 2004. “Going Camping: A New Strategy for Preparing Academically Diverse Students.” Journal of Public Affairs Education 10(1): 19-29. Abstract

Yaghi, Abdulfattah. 2008. “Using Petra Simulation in Teaching Graduate Courses in Human Resource Management: A Hybrid Pedagogy.” Journal of Public Affairs Education 14(3): 399-412. Abstract