NASPAA is the global standard in public service education.
For more than 35 years, NASPAA has established itself as the authoritative accrediting body in the field of public policy, affairs, and administration. In an effort to establish a global standard of public service education, NASPAA has broadened its scope to bring quality assurance to the expanding market of international graduate public service education programs. Programs based in the United States, as well as those based across the world, are held to the same conformance expectations and complete an identical accreditation process. NASPAA encourages programs to become leaders by pursuing accreditation and raising the standard of public service education worldwide.
If you are an international program who is considering joining NASPAA and pursing accreditation, please refer to NASPAA’s Considering Accreditation page and/or the Overview and Timeline page for more detailed information regarding the accreditation process.
The accreditation process is a mutually beneficial relationship between NASPAA and institutional programs seeking accreditation. Programs gain value through increased international recognition, an ever expanding network of peers, and continuous improvement that stems from the self-study process and ongoing program evaluation. NASPAA also benefits by furthering an international dialogue that moves the field of public service education forward through the development of best practices and international exchange.
“Being accredited by NASPAA brings numerous benefits to programs successfully accredited, including providing a sound basis for continuous improvement in the program, confirming the quality of the program to students, employers, and others; increasing the program’s visibility, demonstrating the program’s commitment to excellence in public affairs education, and providing greater opportunities for interaction with leading public affairs programs around the world.” -Shahjahan Bhuiyan, MPA Program Director, Department of Public Policy & Administration, School of Global Affairs & Public Policy, The American University in Cairo
Memoranda of Understanding (MOU)
NASPAA holds several MOUs with peer organizations around the world, which facilitate collaboration and communication to help programs based in different regions pursue relationships with both organizations. Cooperative activities that have been undertaken under these agreements include creating a coordinated accreditation process, identifying programs within a region interested in pursuing accreditation, supporting international exchange, and sharing best practices.
For more information on specific MOUs, please refer to the links below:
- Canadian Association of Programs in Public Administration (CAPPA)
- European Association for Public Administration Accreditation (EAPAA)
- Inter-American Network of Public Administration (INPAE)
- Network of Institutes and Schools of Public Administration in Central and Eastern Europe (NISPAcee)
The NASPAA Standards are mission-driven, which allows programs to be evaluated within their own context. While NASPAA is sensitive to the specific goals and mission of a program, as well as the environment in which it operates in, NASPAA emphasizes the importance of diversity within its accredited programs. Employing a diverse faculty can work to “invigorate discourse” with students by introducing different perspectives into the classroom. Additionally, a diverse student body helps students prepare for the globalized “workplace of the 21st century.” The diversity that can be achieved through international accreditation will work to enhance the global network of public service education programs.
Regional Accreditation and its equivalent
The NASPAA Standards Preconditions state that “The institution offering the program should be accredited (or similarly approved) by a recognized regional, national, or international agency” (Program Eligibility). The eligibility application requires programs to disclose any quality assurance recognitions awarded the institution: either US regional accreditation or its equivalent outside of the United States.