- Class Number 4611
- Term Code 3250
- Class Info
- Unit Value 6 units
- Topic On Campus
- Mode of Delivery In Person
- Prof Carolyn Hendriks
- Prof Carolyn Hendriks
- Class Dates
- Class Start Date 15/07/2022
- Class End Date 02/10/2022
- Census Date 05/08/2022
- Last Date to Enrol 22/07/2022
One of the central challenges in public policy is understanding and responding to the needs and interests of diverse publics. This course explores how governments and citizens tackle this challenge. Taught in an interactive mode, students in this course consider questions, such as: How do policy makers engage citizens in the policy process? How do citizens themselves seek to voice their concerns and exert influence on the policy process? What happens when their interests are mis-represented, misunderstood or ignored? What does meaningful citizen participation look like in an era of 24/7 news cycles and social media? In focusing on 'public' aspects of public policy, this course engages students in various democratic issues that surface in the public policy process. Through applied examples and case studies, students reflect on how democratic ideals, such as inclusion, participation, representation and legitimacy may be realised in contemporary governance. Practical attempts at participatory policy making will be examined and critiqued, including deliberative forums, community meetings, petitions, online engagement and social media.
Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:
- demonstrate a working knowledge of key terms, concepts and ideas on citizen engagement and public talk in public policy
- critically engage with relevant practical and theoretical literature on the design and politics of citizen engagement and public talk in public policy
- engage and facilitate informed discussions on the practice, politics and challenges of engaging citizens in public policy
- critically analyse participatory forms of policy making drawing connections between theory and practice
- demonstrate the ability to think independently, develop informed perspectives and persuasively communicate in the field of public policy
Each day is accompanied by a set of compulsory readings which are available on Wattle.
It is an expectation that you read these before each day.
Remember the more you read and engage in the literature on public engagement, the more you will learn and get out of the course.
Students will be given feedback in the following forms in this course:
- Written comments to individuals on Assessment items 1, 3 and 4.
- Written comments to groups on Assessment item 2 (Participatory Design Pitch)
- Verbal feedback to the whole class on Assessment item 1 (Comparative Paper)
Student FeedbackANU is committed to the demonstration of educational excellence and regularly seeks feedback from students. Students are encouraged to offer feedback directly to their Course Convener or through their College and Course representatives (if applicable). The feedback given in these surveys is anonymous and provides the Colleges, University Education Committee and Academic Board with opportunities to recognise excellent teaching, and opportunities for improvement. The Surveys and Evaluation website provides more information on student surveys at ANU and reports on the feedback provided on ANU courses.
|Week/Session||Summary of Activities||Assessment|
|1||Day 1: Friday 22 July 2022 Introduction and course overview We begin the course by exploring the question: who is 'the public' in public policy? We then consider whether public engagement in public policy is about assisting the development and implmentation of state policies, or opposing them, or both. With this discussion in mind we map the various spaces where citizens engage in public policy for example: via antagonistic protests and social movements, via structured participatory forums, or through grass-roots problem solving efforts. Insisted spaces: protests, advocacy and digital participation In the interactive sessions on Day 1 we look in detail at the form and function of 'insisted spaces' in public policy, that is arenas created by citizens, groups and social movements to mobilize, organize and shape public policy outcomes. We consider a range of advocacy activities such as lobbying and campaigning, as well as more disruptive activities of protests and social movements. We also discuss how Information and Communications Technologies (ICTs) are changing the way citizens connect and relate to each other, and the opportunities (and risks) ICTs present to social movements, advocacy groups and associations.||Before class, please visit the course website (on Wattle) for details on readings and other activities to complete before class.|
|2||Day 2: Monday 25 July 2022 Invited spaces: structured forms of public participation On Day 2, we look at spaces that are created (typically by governments, but occasionally civil society groups) to invite the public into the policy process. In these spaces citizens are formally invited to engage in public policy via structured participatory processes, most often to advise decision makers. We consider the normative and instrumental reasons for inviting the public into the policy process, and start to explore some of the participatory methods for doing so (we expand on this topic further on Days 3 and 4 in the Design Workshops). We also examine the various ways in which governments are using Information and Communications Technologies ICTs to engage and connect with the public.||Before class, please visit the course website (on Wattle) for details on readings and other activities to complete before class.|
|3||Days 3 & 4 : Friday 5 August & Monday 8 August 2022 Participatory Design Workshops I & II On Days 3 and 4 we will workshop the principles and practical craft of how to design 'invited spaces'. Throughout both days we will explore and critically analyse various norms, concepts and practical processes for participatory design. Through applied examples and case studies, we will reflect on how democratic ideals, such as inclusion, participation, representation and legitimacy are operationalised in contemporary participatory design. The workshops will explore frameworks and resources for designing effective participatory processes. We also consider some of the common questions and challenges facing participatory designers such as: • Who is the target group and how they be engaged? • How will you avoid participatory fatigue and over-consultation? • Who is likely to be excluded by the process? • How will you ensure that public engagement is meaningful i.e. that decision makers listen? On Day 3 students will be allocated a Design Group for their Participatory Design Pitch assessment task. Students will be given time on Days 3 and 4 to work in their group on their Pitch.||Before class, please visit the course website (on Wattle) for details on readings and other activities to complete before class. On Day 4, students will present their group assessment task, the Participatory Design Pitch.|
|5||Day 5: Friday 19 August 2022 Design Pitches On Day 5 groups will ‘pitch’ their participatory design to the class. Collectively we will discuss each design and explore strategies to strengthen each design. Following the pitches the class will reflect on their own personal experiences of participating and deliberating in small groups. Introduction to citizen-led governance spaces In the workshop session on Day 5 we will discuss 'citizen-led governance spaces', which are bottom-up or grassroots efforts to solve collective problems. These community initiatives typically emerge when citizens are frustrated with the policy status quo, and they see pathways for addressing a public problem. In contrast to invited spaces, citizens in 'citizen-led governance spaces' can exercise considerable agency in public policy by determining by themselves, how they want to work with state and market actors.||Before class, please visit the course website (on Wattle) for details on readings and other activities to complete before class.|
|6||Day 6: Monday 29 August 2022 Citizen-led Governance Spaces On Day 6 we look further at 'citizen-led governance spaces', and consider the opportunities and challenges they create for citizens, civil society, governments, public policy and democracy more broadly. Students will spend time in class discussing and selecting a ‘'citizen-led governance spaces’ (or grassroots initiative) for their final assessment task (the Case Study). Future Trends and Themes in Public Engagement In the workshop session of Day 6 we summarise key themes across the course and discuss future trends in public participation.||Before class, please visit the course website (on Wattle) for details on readings and other activities to complete before class.|
|Assessment task||Value||Due Date||Return of assessment||Learning Outcomes|
|Comparative Paper (30% individual mark)||30 %||01/08/2022||15/08/2022||1,2,4,5|
|Participatory Design Pitch (25% group mark)||25 %||19/08/2022||23/08/2022||1,2,3,5|
|Design Reflection (15% individual mark)||15 %||09/09/2022||23/09/2022||1,2,3,4,5|
|Case Study (30% individual mark)||30 %||25/09/2022||*||1,2,4,5|
* If the Due Date and Return of Assessment date are blank, see the Assessment Tab for specific Assessment Task details
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Assessment RequirementsThe ANU is using 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. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website Students may choose not to submit assessment items through Turnitin. In this instance you will be required to submit, alongside the assessment item itself, hard copies of all references included in the assessment item.
Moderation of AssessmentMarks that are allocated during Semester are to be considered provisional until formalised by the College examiners meeting at the end of each Semester. If appropriate, some moderation of marks might be applied prior to final results being released.
Assessment Task 1
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,4,5
Comparative Paper (30% individual mark)
1600 words (not including refs)
This assessment task requires you to write a short essay-style paper comparing two particular forms of public engagement, namely insisted spaces (Day 1) and invited spaces (Day 2). In your paper compare these two ‘spaces’ in terms of:
• how the space enables the public to participate in public policy
• the benefits and risks each presents to public policy
In your discussion make reference to at least two practical examples drawn from relevant course literature (see required readings plus resources on Wattle).
• Comprehension and focus on set task (Learning Outcome 5)
• Understanding of key concepts and ideas (Learning Outcome 1)
• Comparative analysis of different approaches to public engagement in policy (Learning Outcome 4)
• Critical engagement in course literature (Learning Outcome 2)
• Competent use of case studies connecting theory and practice (Learning Outcome 4)
• Clarity of organisational structure and expression (Learning Outcome 5)
Assessment Task 2
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,5
Participatory Design Pitch (25% group mark)
Students will be allocated into a small group and will work together to develop a 'participatory design pitch' for a specific public problem/policy issue. Each group will play the role of a community engagement consultancy firm that has been asked to submit a participatory design for a specified client on a specified policy problem. Groups will be allocated in Day 3, and each group will each consider a different policy problem, with different clients. There will be time set aside on Days 3 and 4 for students to work in groups to develop their participatory design pitch.
As a this task requires you to:
- Consider the allocated scenario (each group will have a different scenario to consider)
- Engage in the practical and theoretical literature on participatory design in order to develop a design for your allocated scenario
- Prepare and present a presentation (on Day 5) in which the group ‘pitches’ its design to the class, followed by a question and answer session.
The Pitch needs to provide an overview of the design process and its proposal, and engage the class in discussion on the design. During your presentation, your group should outline the following aspects of your participatory design concept:
- Briefly summarise the scenario and the central the policy problem
- Make clear any assumptions that your group made about your scenario.
- Outline the group's design process
- Who are the affected publics?
- How will different affected publics be selected/recruited, and how will they participate?
- What is the timeline for the design?
- What are the expected benefits and possible risks?
· Understanding and focus on the set task (Learning Outcome 5)
· Demonstration of participatory design principles informed by relevant literature (Learning Outcomes 1 and 2)
· Evidence of inclusive and effective group work (Learning outcome 3)
· Engaging the class in a discussion on the design (Learning outcome 3)
· Effective and persuasive communication of participatory ideas and design (Learning outcome 5)
Assessment Task 3
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4,5
Design Reflection (15% individual mark)
1400 words (not including refs)
Following the design pitches, each student will write a paper reflecting on how they personally experienced the group design process, and how they would revise the original design proposal based on class feedback and further reading. The paper should be written in first person, and consider the following questions:
· Reflecting on the process of the Participatory Design, what aspect of the design process worked well and what could have been improved?
· How would you personally revise your group’s Design Concept based on class discussions, ideas from other presentations and subsequent readings?
· What has been the key learning for you from this course about effective participatory design in public policy?
• Focus on the set task (Learning Outcome 5)
• Understanding of relevant concepts and ideas (Learning Outcome 1)
• Evidence of reflection on comments and feedback from class discussion (Learning outcome 3)
• Revision of original design concept drawing on feedback and relevant practical and scholarly literature (Learning Outcomes 2 and 4)
• Critical reflection on the process and product of participatory design (Learning outcome 4)
• Clarity of organisational structure and expression (Learning Outcome 5)
Assessment Task 4
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,4,5
Case Study (30% individual mark)
1600 words (not including refs)
You are required to identify and discuss a case study of a contemporary ‘citizen-led governance space’ – a topic we will explore on Days 5 & 6. The case study should be based on your own desktop research, rather than one that has been written up in a scholarly article.
This assessment task is designed to increase your skills in researching, analysing and discussing how citizens engage in public policy. Students are asked to use the internet to research and find a case where citizens have taken a collective, grass-roots approach to governing a particular public problem, for example energy reform, crime, social issues, planning issues, pollution, care, immigration etc. the initiative has been instigated, and is run, by citizens.
To find a suitable 'citizen-led governance space' (CGS) for their case study, students should look for citizens' initiatives/grassroots community groups with the following characteristics:
- it was founded and is run by citizens
- citizens participate by taking pragmatic steps to resolve a specific policy problem (ie. they are not just protesting against something, or providing recommendations to policy makers, but actually doing the governing).
- the citizens leading the CGS adopt a participatory approach to governing (for example, they use participatory procedures to engage other citizens)
Once you have found a suitable case study, students need to write a case study that addresses the following questions:
- What ‘public problem’ are the citizens trying to solve?
- How did the citizens self-organise into a CGS?
- How are the citizens self-governing themselves internally? (e.g. how are groups decisions made, who is involved, how etc)
- What participatory methods (if any) are they using to engage or mobilise other citizens (or the broader public)?
- In your assessment, how inclusive is the CGS of other citizens?
- How does your CGS case interact with the state (cooperatively, selectively, at arms-length, or in another manner)?
- How does this case inform ideas in the scholarly literature on citizen-led governance/community-based iniatives?
Comprehension and focus on set task (Learning Outcome 5)
Understanding of relevant concepts and ideas (Learning Outcome 1)
Evidence of extensive (desktop) research (Learning Outcomes 2 and 5)
Connection of case to relevant scholarly literature (Learning Outcome 2)
Original analysis (not just description) of the case (Learning outcome 4)
Clarity of organisational structure and expression (Learning Outcome 5)
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citizen engagement, public participation, communities, democratic aspects of public policy including forms of collective action, political representation, inclusion and legitimacy, deliberative democracy
Prof Carolyn Hendriks
Prof Carolyn Hendriks