Jul 18, 2024  
2022-2023 Graduate Catalog 
2022-2023 Graduate Catalog [Not Current Academic Year. Consult with Your Academic Advisor for Your Catalog Year]

Public Affairs

Science Building
3581 Cullen Boulevard Suite 121
Houston, Texas 77204-5021

(713) 743-3970

Dean: Dr. Jim Granato

Associate Dean of Graduate Studies: Dr. Sunny Wong




From a foundation of integrity, the Hobby School of Public Affairs prepares its graduates to make government, business and communities work more effectively by harnessing data and research to improve public policy.

About the Hobby School

Interdisciplinary expertise and community visibility constitute the foundation of the Hobby School of Public Affairs. The Hobby School of Public Affairs offers undergraduate and graduate programs, as well as several dual degrees/accelerated pathway programs that are available via partnerships with other academic departments. The Hobby School’s research component is found within the Center for Public Policy, including programs and initiatives such as the Survey Research Institute, the Concept Visualization Lab, the Empirical Implications of Theoretical Models Summer Institute, and the Elizabeth D. Rockwell Center on Ethics and Leadership Center. Public service and community engagement are also a vital component of the Hobby School as evidenced through the Civic Houston Internship Program, Harris Fellows, Hobby Fellows, Leland Fellows, the nationally-accredited Certified Public Manager program, the Civic Engagement Boot Camp, and various public events.

Led by Dean Granato, the Hobby School is supported by an advisory board of Houstonians prominent in business and civic affairs, and maintains cooperative relationships with many educational and public service entities in the Houston area and the state of Texas.

The Hobby School is a Full Member of the Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs, and Administration (NASPAA) and Institutional Member of the Association for Public Policy Analysis & Management (APPAM). The Hobby School also maintains a Pi Alpha Alpha chapter, which is the global honors society for public affairs and administration.

Undergraduate Programs

In addition to the Hobby School’s undergraduate programs, the Hobby School also has partnerships with other UH colleges offering accelerated pathway programs that allow an undergraduate student to complete selected undergraduate degrees (Bauer College of Business, Economics, Honors College, Philosophy, and Psychology) and the Master of Public Policy in five years.

Graduate Programs

The Hobby School’s Master of Public Policy (MPP) program offers an interdisciplinary degree, which prepares students to conduct advanced quantitative and qualitative analyses. Drawing from political science, psychology, decision sciences and more, MPP graduates will be ready for analytic and decision-making positions in many fields within the public, private, and nonprofit sectors. In addition, MPP graduates will be prepared to enter a PhD program with a quantitative emphasis.

The Hobby School also offers smaller graduate certificate programs in a variety of areas.

Center for Public Policy

Established in 1981, the Center for Public Policy (CPP) serves the Houston community as a non-partisan research organization within the Hobby School at the University of Houston.

The CPP is dedicated to providing scientific, non-biased data and analysis to public officials, business professionals, community leaders and others through an interdisciplinary approach with particular emphasis on unifying case-study, formal/mathematical modeling, and applied statistics and experiments. Research work teams include faculty from a variety of disciplines and universities as well as staff and students. These research teams focus on a diverse array of important public policy and academic issues while archiving data, conducting statistical analysis, using experiments and computer simulations, and developing working papers. The issue may be transportation, energy, elections, or a myriad of others but the approach will always use objective methods of analysis.

Survey Research Institute

The Hobby School’s Survey Research Institute (SRI) conducts ongoing public opinion polling. Since its inception within the Center for Public Policy in 1981, SRI has provided polling data for local media such as the Houston Chronicle, KHOU, and KUHF as well as for local, regional, and state public and private sector entities.

Concept Visualization Lab

The Concept Visualization Lab (CVL) creates multi-dimensional visualizations and proto-types to display research findings in dynamic and interactive graphics. Whether it is a state-wide study or an examination of a local issue, the CVL visualizations can make data come alive.

EITM Summer Institute

The Empirical Implications of Theoretical Models (EITM) Summer Institute at UH was established in 2012. The two-week institute teaches the three-step EITM framework inspired by the National Science Foundation to establish a transparent relation between theory and test.

Elizabeth D. Rockwell Center on Ethics and Leadership

The Elizabeth D. Rockwell Center on Ethics and Leadership links the analytical rigor of the social sciences with the philosophical, historical, and normative richness of the liberal arts to inform public understanding of the principles and policies of civic life. The center restores the traditional role of the social sciences and liberal arts-the “human sciences”-as the source of moral, cultural, and political renewal and as the core of the education of citizens.

Concept Visualization Lab

The Concept Visualization Lab (CVL) creates multi-dimensional visualizations and proto-types to display research findings in dynamic and interactive graphics. Whether it is a state-wide study or an examination of a local issue, the CVL visualizations can make data come alive.

Public Service Internship Programs

In an effort to introduce students to the inner-workings of public service, the Hobby School manages various internship programs for undergraduates including the Civic Houston Internship Program (CHIP-Houston area), Harris Fellows (Harris County), Hobby Fellows (Austin), and Leland Fellows (Washington, DC). Intern alumni are now working from Houston City Hall to Capitol Hill.

Certified Public Manager Program

The Hobby School’s Certified Public Manager (CPM) program is designed for government and non-profit staff and managers who are interested in enhancing their skills and abilities needed to deal with “real-world” problems and situations. CPM graduates apply best practices and theory to their management behaviors and strategies using prescribed sets of professional standards.

Civic Engagement Boot Camp

The Hobby School’s Civic Engagement Boot Camp (CEBC) is a series of one day interactive sessions designed to teach the skills necessary to create positive change. Each workshop will develop and enhance the abilities required to lead effectively within any environment.

Community Outreach

The Hobby School partners with several Houston organizations including BakerRipley, the Greater Houston Partnership, Global Unisource, and the League of Women Voters to promote civic engagement, scientific policy analysis, and professional training.


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