Mass Appeal: Communicating Policy Ideas in Multiple Media

ISBN : 9780190062187

Justin Gest
192 Pages
140 x 210 mm
Pub date
Sep 2020
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Public policy education is oriented around the development of innovative ideas for how to improve governance and make society better. However, it undervalues a critical tool for translating policy ideas into action: the ability to communicate ideas broadly, strategically, and effectively. Drawing on his past frustration with translating his research from academia to the public sphere, Justin Gest has written a primer for public policy students, researchers, and policy professionals on how to turn analyses and memos into clear and persuasive campaigns. This book outlines the principles, structure, and target audience for different media essential to policy communication. Including advice from practitioners and illustrative examples, Gest explains the indispensability of pithiness to clear communication and how to achieve it.


1. A Multilingual Toolkit
2. The Executive Summary
3. The Press Release
4. The Op-Ed and Blog
5. The Briefing
6. The Broadcast Appearance
7. The Elevator Pitch
8. The Website and Social Media
9. Key Questions
Sources Cited

About the author: 

Justin Gest is Associate Professor of Policy and Government at George Mason University's Schar School of Policy and Government. He is the author of Apart: Alienated and Engaged Muslims in the West (2010); The New Minority: White Working Class Politics in an Age of Immigration and Inequality (2016); The White Working Class: What Everyone Needs to Know (2018); and co-author of Crossroads: Comparative Immigration Regimes in a World of Demographic Change (2018). In 2014 and 2020, he received Harvard University's Joseph R. Levenson Memorial Teaching Prize and George Mason University's Teaching Excellence Award, respectively each university's highest award for faculty teaching.

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