ERIC Number: ED157808
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1978-Mar
Reference Count: 0
Social Science Utilization in State Legislative Policy Making.
Mitchell, Douglas E.
In this paper, social science utilization is studied as an aspect of legislative decision making. The purposes of the paper are to provide a review of political science literature on state legislatures, offer a theoretical framework for interpreting utilization of social science research, apply the framework to interview data, and generate a theoretical framework to test additional social science utilization hypotheses. In 1977, nearly 100 legislators, staff members, executive branch personnel, and interest group spokesmen dealing with educational legislation in Arizona, California, and Oregon were interviewed regarding legislative issues and influences. Data from these interviews suggested that policy makers continually confront situations in which pressures to act are diverse, incessant, intense, and difficult to identify clearly. A theory of social science utilization was devloped which was in accordance with data from these interviews and from literature on state legislatures. The theory was based on three major elements: (1) location of points within the legislative policy-making process at which social science findings might be expected to have a significant impact; (2) the linkage system which ties social science research to utilization in the policy process; and (3) orientational frames of reference which influence legislators to utilize social science and/or other resources in decision making. Hypotheses based on this theoretical framework will be used to test the nature of legislative issues and the background and attitudes of legislators. (Author/DB)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (Toronto, Ontario, March 27-31, 1978)