• Offered by ANU Law School
  • ANU College ANU College of Law
  • Classification Specialist
  • Course subject Laws
  • Areas of interest Law
  • Academic career PGRD
  • Course convener
    • Dr Neha Mishra
  • Mode of delivery Online or In Person
  • Offered in Spring Session 2022
    See Future Offerings

This course explores how law and policy is shaping and being shaped by digital economies. Big technology companies dominate the stock exchange and Fortune 500. Mobile apps support mega marketplaces, supported by seamless online payments systems. Gig economy networks are disrupting traditional service and employment models. This ecosystem is fueled by data. Our every movement, search, post, sentiment, purchase, and deletion is saved, scraped, stored, analysed, and sold. Our personal information is being harvested and fed back to us. Topics include:

  • Defamation on social media
  • Industrial relations in gig economies
  • The supreme court of Facebook
  • Accountability of algorithms
  • Smart contracts in financial markets
  • Crypto-bubbles and Ponzi schemes

The legal and policy challenges to be examined include deciding jurisdiction, identifying participants, antitrust regulation, monitoring taxable events and financial surveillance.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

  1. Investigate and critically evaluate how the law and policy is shaping and being shaped by digital economies.
  2. Reflect critically on the legal ramifications of automating legal relationships and decision-making.
  3. Explore and review the legal principles and rules applicable to cryptocurrencies, digital assets and smart contracts.
  4. Critically analyse and assess the dispute resolution mechanisms developed by online marketplace providers and social media platforms.
  5. Undertake legal research and present findings which evaluate how e-business models have disrupted employment and business arrangements and relationships.

Indicative Assessment

  1. Contributions to online blog (800 words x 3 blogs; 2,400 words) (30) [LO 1,2,3,4]
  2. Quiz (20) [LO 1,2,3]
  3. Research essay (3,800 words) (50) [LO 1,2,3,4,5]

The ANU uses Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. While the use of Turnitin is not mandatory, the ANU highly recommends Turnitin is used by both teaching staff and students. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website.


Classes offered in non-standard sessions will be taught on an intensive base with compulsory contact hours (approximately 26 hours of teaching). The course will also require advanced preparation through assigned readings. In total, it is anticipated that the hours required for completion of this course (class preparation, teaching and completion of assessment) will not exceed 120 hours. Classes offered during semester periods are expected to have 3 contact hours per week. Click here for the LLM Masters Program timetable

Inherent Requirements

Not applicable

Requisite and Incompatibility

To enrol in this course you must be studying a; Master of Laws (MLLM) and have completed or be completing LAWS8586 Law and Legal Institutions; or Graduate Certificate of Law (CLAW) and have completed or be completing LAWS8586 Law and Legal Institutions; or Graduate Certificate of New Technologies Law (CNTL); or Juris Doctor (MJD) and have completed or be completing five 1000 or 6100 level LAWS courses; or Master of Financial Management and Law (MFIML) and have completed or be completing LAWS8586 Law and Legal Institutions. Students undertaking any ANU graduate program may apply for this course. Enrolments are accepted on a case-by-case basis. Please contact the ANU College of Law for appropriate permission.

Prescribed Texts

PA Ryan, Trust and Distrust in Digital Economies (Routledge, 2019)

Preliminary Reading

Students must rely on the approved Class Summary which will be posted to the Programs and Courses site approximately 2 weeks prior to the commencement of the course


Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

Commonwealth Support (CSP) Students
If you have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). More information about your student contribution amount for each course at Fees

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
6 units

If you are a domestic graduate coursework student with a Domestic Tuition Fee (DTF) place or international student you will be required to pay course tuition fees (see below). Course tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2022 $4740
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2022 $6000
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

The list of offerings for future years is indicative only.
Class summaries, if available, can be accessed by clicking on the View link for the relevant class number.

Spring Session

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
6538 03 Oct 2022 04 Oct 2022 14 Oct 2022 01 Dec 2022 Online N/A

Responsible Officer: Registrar, Student Administration / Page Contact: Website Administrator / Frequently Asked Questions