Policymaking is relatively complicated, so policy researchers have looked for ways to simplify it in order to study it in more detail. Because of this complexity (i.e., multiple issues and actors in numerous political arenas seeking to influence the formulation, implementation, and outcomes of policy actions), no one research approach is likely to yield a complete picture. In contrast, a number of different conceptual models and methods are used in investigating policy. Over the past several decades, one popular way of looking at the policymaking process has been to break it up into a number of different regular events or stages.