Round Table: Public Policy in the 21st Century: Analysis, Management and Forecasting

Public policies are constantly evolving and the means to analyze and understand them are becoming more sophisticated. “Our societies need governance systems with public policies that are equal to their complexities and challenges, with the flexibility to keep up. Public systems must guarantee societies at least 3 activities at the same time: providing services, managing crises and achieving innovations. We need public policies that know how to combine these three requirements simultaneously”. This observation, made by Geert Bouckaert, a specialist in public administration, is a challenge to researchers, decision-makers and stakeholders involved in the creation and analysis of public policies.

This roundtable brings together French-speaking experts who contributed to the recent treatise Politiques publiques: Fondements et prospective pour l’analyse de l’action publique

Traité Politiques publiques

The questions that will be addressed in this roundtable are:

  • How does digital influence public policy?
  • What role do public policy analysts play: experts or advisors to the prince?
  • What are the challenges of public policy making and analysis in the 21st century?


9:30 am to 11 am (Montreal time)
3:30 pm to 5 pm (Paris time)

Opening Welcome

Steve Jacob (Université Laval), co-leader of OBVIA’s Public Policy function
Nathalie Schiffino (Université catholique de Louvain)

The Digital in Public Policy Analysis
In the 21st century, public action is marked by digitalization, the need to manage large amounts of data, and the introduction of artificial intelligence into administrative processes. What are the findings and what challenges await us?

Moderator: Steve Jacob (Université Laval)

Panelists: Philippe Bezes (Sciences Po Paris) and Sandrine Roginsky (Université catholique de Louvain)

Public Policy Analysts: Researchers or Advisors to the prince?
In the United States in the 20th century, public policy analysis was born out of a desire to improve public policy, particularly with respect to resource allocation. Should researchers be more involved in public policy processes?

Moderator: Frédéric Varone (University of Geneva)

Panelists: Jean-Michel Eymeri-Douzans (Sciences Po Toulouse), Marie-Hélène L’Heureux (Université Laval) and Romain Pasquier (Sciences Po Rennes)

What Kind of Public Policy Analysis in the 21st Century?
Since its inception, public policy analysis has borrowed heavily from other disciplines and has become ultra-specialized. Is it in danger of imploding and how can it be renewed?

Moderator: Nathalie Schiffino (Université catholique de Louvain)

Panelists: Geert Bouckaert (KULeuven), Claire Dupuy (Université catholique de Louvain, AFSP) and Patrick Hassenteufel (Université Paris Saclay)

Closing Comments

Michael Keating (University of Aberdeen)

This round table is organized with the support of:

Partenaires de la table ronde


Participants who wish to obtain a certificate of participation in this roundtable can indicate it in the registration form. It will be sent by e-mail by the OBVIA in the days following the event. Each participant is then responsible for taking the necessary steps to have their participation recognized as a continuing education activity by their educational institution, their employer or their professional order.

This event will be held in French only.

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The International Observatory on the Societal Impacts of AI and Digital Technology is made possible by the support of the Fonds de recherche du Québec.