Social Policy Course supports legislators to link legislative works with policies

To date, 208 participants including parliamentarians, civil servants, local government leaders and civil society representatives have attended the Course.

14 July 2023
A group photo of participants
UNICEF Bhutan/2023
National Council members and staff with the Chairperson of National Council Sangay Dorji and UNICEF Bhutan Deputy Representative, Fawzia Hoodbhoy.

To support parliamentarians in better comprehending and articulating the necessity for social policy within the ambit of their legislative mandate, the National Council members and secretariat officials attended a five-day course on Social Policy.

Organised jointly by Sherubtse College and UNICEF Bhutan, the course covers topics ranging from conceptual understanding of social policy and the framework for analyzing social policy to more specific issues like social protection, the significance of investing in children as the cornerstone of human development, labor dynamics, growth, equity and inclusion, emerging technologies, budgeting process, macro-economic outlook, and organizational and structural framework of the state machinery.

Within the scope of the Parliament's role, the course also includes sessions on public engagement, communication and negotiation skills for policy formulation, enactment, and effective implementation that is evidence-based, consultative, and in the best interests of children, women, and the most vulnerable section of the society.

Led by the National Council Chairperson, 23 members and 11 Secretariat officials attended the course from 10-14 July. This is the seventh cohort of Social Policy Course participants, bringing the total to 208 (174 male, 34 female) and includes parliamentarians, civil servants, local government leaders and civil society representatives.

Chairperson of the National Council Sangay Dorji said, the certificate course on Social Policy will definitely help the members carry out their roles and responsibilities more effectively and efficiently. “The themes selected for this course are so pertinent that they have deepened our grasp of the criteria for identifying social and public issues as well as how to prioritize them for legislation, rules, and regulations,” the Chairperson said.

Social Policy covers policies and programmes aimed at preventing or protecting all people against poverty, vulnerability and social exclusion throughout their life-course, with a particular emphasis towards vulnerable groups.

National Council Member from Pemagatshel, Jamyang Namgyal said, “Social policy course is a wonderful platform to bring politicians and academicians together to achieve intelligent political decisions. It also provides an opportunity for a meaningful civil discourse on a variety of social issues and its possible solutions.”

"Sherubtse College is pleased to be part of fostering culture of learning and development to address societal challenges and promoting wellbeing of children by the law makers," said the Dean of Academic Affairs, Sonam Dendup.

Jigme Dorji, Social Policy Specialist at UNICEF Bhutan, said that social policy course is relevant for the parliamentarians in order to prioritize investment in children as the cornerstone of human development in Bhutan.

Initially launched with support from external resource persons, today the course was co-created and facilitated by lecturers of Sherubtse College, representatives from the National Council, Ministry of Finance, the National Statistics Bureau, the Royal Institute for Governance and Strategic Studies and UNICEF Bhutan. 

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