PRGS is unique in American higher education. It was founded in 1970 as one of the original eight graduate programs in public policy analysis. PRGS was the only program specializing in the Ph.D. It is also the only one based at a public policy research institute—the Santa Monica, California-based RAND Corporation—which invented many of the analytical tools of public policy analysis.
PRGS doctoral students take advanced courses in such fields as economics, statistics, political science, and the social sciences. They also work part-time as members of RAND’s interdisciplinary research teams, which is how they earn their fellowships.