California Infastructure Problem

Problem Definition Memorandum (15%): Students will complete a problem definition memorandum for the policy topic they have selected. Students will do two drafts. The first will be submitted to Pearson Tutor Services in MyWritingLab Plus. Students will then revise it and submit the second one to the instructor in Blackboard.

In practice, when you are defining a problem for policy work, knowing your purpose matters as much as knowing your audience.

Goal: Ability to recognize problematic conditions and to define a policy problem they present. For a recognized problem, ability to define policy options and to offer criteria for decision.

Objective: Problem definition.


Scope: Individual or collective; local or broader in impact; well-known or unrecognized; widely discussed or little considered; past, present, or anticipated.

Strategy: Provide information necessary to your purpose (Smith, 2010, p. 33).