Policy Cycle

Published: | Updated: February 1, 2017

Definition - What does Policy Cycle mean?

The policy cycle describes the way in which an issue develops from initial ideas, through implementation phases to fruition, evaluation and the framing of new agendas. It consists of five main phases, namely, agenda setting, policy formulation, decision-making, implementation, and evaluation. Some authors include additional steps like consultation and coordination.

Safeopedia explains Policy Cycle

Although the policy cycle may appear to be an ordered process that begins at one point and ends at another, policy-making can begin or be abandoned or altered at any point of the cycle. Attempts to change existing policies require hard evidence, diplomacy and determination in order to succeed. There are usually several opinions and perceptions of policies and they are, therefore, often a subject for debate, even when there are no budgetary constraints.

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