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The John S. Watson Institute for Public Policy is dedicated to deepening the analysis around critical public policy challenges and broadening the range of policy ideas, perspectives and options. The Institute meets the practical needs of decision makers across New Jersey, who are charged with enacting public policy in the interest of New Jersey’s residents.
The Institute was created to respond to the practical needs of decision makers across New Jersey, and to honor the outstanding record of public service of the late N.J. Assemblyman John S. Watson, the nation’s first African American chairman of an appropriations committee. The University initially established The Institute as the Trenton Office of Policy Studies in 1991 and dedicated it as The John S. Watson Institute for Public Policy in 1997.
Today, the Institute serves as a vital resource for New Jersey decision-makers through a practical, nonpartisan, hands-on approach that supports informed public policy that links people to policy. The Institute addresses the state’s most critical issues through practical research and technical assistance that are supported by the resources of higher education in a manner that reflects the University's tradition of innovation and excellence.
The John S. Watson Institute for Public Policy is composed of integrated policy centers and initiatives that inform and support the work of the Institute: