The annual Policy Surveillance Institute is the most comprehensive scientific legal mapping training hosted by the Center for Public Health Law Research. Learn more about policy surveillance.

Attend an Institute

2024 Policy Surveillance Institute

About the Institute

The Policy Surveillance Institute teaches scientific legal mapping methods during a two-day intensive training seminar in Philadelphia. The Institute is intended for individuals interested in studying policies and law once they are enacted, and exploring variation in policy across jurisdictions and over time. Participants will learn each step in the policy surveillance process with live, virtual training from experts from the Center for Public Health Law Research on policy surveillance software and through collaborative exercises.

The Policy Surveillance Institute has two concurrent tracks: the introductory track and the advanced track. Both tracks are open to students and professionals.

  • The introductory track is appropriate for individuals who have limited to no knowledge of policy surveillance and scientific legal mapping techniques. This track will use hands-on exercises to introduce the full policy surveillance process, and will use pre-set examples to illustrate how to apply the process to create a cross-sectional dataset (tracking laws and policies at one point in time across jurisdictions). Upon completion, participants will be able to apply the policy surveillance process to their individual projects. 

  • The advanced track is appropriate for individuals who are familiar with policy surveillance methods and who want to learn how to lead a policy surveillance project. Attendees will learn the steps necessary to create and manage a policy surveillance project, including creating a transdisciplinary team, recruiting a subject matter expert, project planning, quality control methods, and conceptualizing the project from start to finish. The advanced track will also cover longitudinal data building. Attendees for this track will benefit by coming with a project or topic in mind, as the track will also focus on providing hands-on technical assistance for project managers. Individuals enrolling in the advanced session will be asked to demonstrate their proficiency by identifying previous training, or relevant experience (e.g., attendance at a previous Policy Surveillance Institute, attendance at all parts of one of the Advanced Webinar Series, previous work on a policy surveillance project). 

Past Institutes (2017–2023)