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Dates and Times:

Three-day course:
Day one: Tuesday 5 November
Day two: Wednesday 6 November
Day three: Tuesday 12 November

About the Course

The development of public policy is a key responsibility of the Government and remains a key focus for all public servants. In recent years, policy development has embraced new more inclusive approaches, with an increased emphasis on consultation with key stakeholders and some internet based consultation processes for draft legislation. With the introduction of Regulatory Impact Analysis (RIA), policy development has become a more focused and effective process.

However, while more inclusive, the process of developing policy in key areas and drafting legislation to give effect to policy proposals remains a complex and time consuming activity for public servants. Understanding and bringing legislation through the legislative process can be a daunting prospect for officials. Legislation gives effect to government policies and it remains a constant challenge to ensure that legislation achieves the purpose and objective behind its introduction – it must also be accessible, effective and robust. The legislative process in Ireland can appear to be a complex maze of procedures and formalities, which can be difficult to understand, but essential for public servants to accommodate and manage.This course provides practical guidance and background knowledge, to enable participants to grasp and understand policy development and delivery.

Learning Outcomes

On completion of this course participants will know:

• How policy is developed;
• Best practice and latest techniques for policy development;
• About the preparation and drafting of legislation; and
• How the legislative process works.

Intended Audience

The course is aimed at public servants involved in developing and delivering policy, from initial research to implementation and evaluation, who want to find ways to improve their own and their organisation’s policy-making and delivery skills.

The course will be of direct relevance to those working in Government Departments and in the Public Service generally who are involved in the development of policy for their organisation and its effective enactment into legislation. It will be a practical and focused training course, with contributions from a panel of speakers with expertise in policy development, legislative drafting, the conduct of the regulatory impact analysis and the legislative process.


This course is accredited by the Institute of Commercial Management (ICM). Attendees will receive an ICM Continuing Professional Development (CPD) Training Award on successful completion of the course including attendance and coursework assessments .


For further information on this course, you can read the course brochure by clicking here 

Course Tutors


Garrett Fennell is a solicitor and a specialist consultant in regulatory and public affairs.

Garrett has advised a large number of public bodies on compliance issues and practices. Garrett is a founding Director of Public Affairs Ireland and leads a specialist regulatory and public policy consultancy, Fennell Public Affairs, in 1997. He formerly worked with the ESB and McCann FitzGerald.



Tom Ferris is an independent consultant economist specialising in public sector governance, better regulation and transport economics.

He writes regularly for Public Affairs Ireland. He was previously the Senior Economist in the Department of Transport, until February 2006. Since then, he has undertaken consultancy projects for the World Bank, the OECD, and a number of private sector companies. He is an occasional lecturer in public sector economics at NUI Galway, University College Cork, and Public Affairs Ireland. He holds an MA in Economics from University College Dublin, and a Fellowship from the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport.


 Jim Power is a graduate of University College Dublin. He has worked as Chief Economist and an economic advisor to the Friends First Group.He previously worked as Chief Economist at Bank of Ireland Group and Treasury Economist at AIB Group. He teaches Business Economics on the Executive and Full-Time MBA at the Michael Smurfit Graduate School of Business, University College Dublin. He is a board member of Agri-aware, a food awareness body, and he is Chairperson of Love Irish Food. He is the editor of the Friends First Quarterly Economic Outlook, which has established itself as one of Ireland’s leading commentaries on the Irish economy. He is owner-manager of Jim Power Economics Ltd and conducts economic and financial consultancy projects both in Ireland and overseas. His first book, Picking up the Pieces was published by Blackhall Publishing in November 2009.


Dr. Ronnie O’Toole is a Partner with Indecon Economic Consultants, and an expert in the analysis of public policy. Ronnie joined Indecon from the Department of Finance/ Central Bank of Ireland where he headed the National Payments Plan. In his earlier career Ronnie was Chief Economist with Danske Bank and prior to that worked as a Senior Policy Analyst with the Irish Government’s policy and research agency Forfás. With Forfás Ronnie worked on quantitative analysis of the impact of Trade, Investment and Productivity in Ireland, and advised the National Competitiveness Council. Ronnie holds a Ph.D. in Economics from Trinity College.



Paul O’Brien is currently a Director at the communications and public affairs firm Drury Porter Novelli. Prior to this Paul was a Special Adviser to the Taoiseach with responsibility for policy and Programme for Government implementation from 2011 to 2017. In this role Paul has been at the centre of nationaleconomic and enterprise policy development and has extensive European and international experience.From participating in Government Cabinet Committees and specific policy taskforces, Paul has an indepth knowledge of national policy and regulatory challenges facing numerous sectors. Paul also brings considerable up-to-date political experience from his role as a key member of the Programme for Government negotiation teams in 2011 and 2016. Paul is a BA and MA graduate of UCD.


Tailored Training 

All of our open programmes can also be run on an in-house basis. For more information, see our page on In-House Training.


Click here to register your interest for further dates