• Class Number 4444
  • Term Code 3330
  • Class Info
  • Unit Value 6 units
  • Mode of Delivery In Person
    • Dana Rice
    • Dana Rice
  • Class Dates
  • Class Start Date 20/02/2023
  • Class End Date 26/05/2023
  • Census Date 31/03/2023
  • Last Date to Enrol 27/02/2023
SELT Survey Results

Energy – in the form of oil and gas – is the most plentiful and valuable natural resource of the Caspian Sea and its vicinity. The opening up of the region’s hydrocarbon reserves represents one of the most significant consequences of the Soviet Union’s collapse in 1991. Potential benefits from energy development to national and commercial entities are enormous, but so are the challenges stemming from the expansion of global economy, international and intra-regional competition, and the internal political dynamics of the Caspian states. The region is at the crossroads: from its current volatile situation, it could evolve either as an area of crisis, or as a zone of stability. The dynamics of energy development will be crucial for determining the actual outcome.

The course will address the politics of hydrocarbons in the Caucasus and Central Asia as a security problem. While substantial attention will be paid to the traditional balance-of-power contest involving external states, such as Russia, the USA, China, Turkey, and Iran, it will attempt to go beyond pure geopolitics and address broader questions: Is energy development making conflict more or less likely in the region? What will be the domestic impact of the expected hydrocarbon boom? What are the implications for the human and natural environment?

Learning Outcomes

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

  1. form a thorough understanding of political and economic problems facing post-Soviet states in Central Asia and the Caucasus;
  2. examine geostrategic, economic and technical aspects of energy production and transportation in the Caspian basin;
  3. gain a comprehensive picture of the interaction of the nation-states, domestic actors, and international oil and gas companies in the region;
  4. assess the conflict potential associated with hydrocarbon and pipeline politics and make projections for the future; and
  5. present analytical findings in a cogent manner.

Whether you are on campus or studying remotely, there are a variety of online platforms you will use to participate in your study program. These could include videos for lectures and other instruction, two-way video conferencing for interactive learning, email and other messaging tools for communication, interactive web apps for formative and collaborative activities, print and/or photo/scan for handwritten work and drawings, and home-based assessment.

ANU outlines recommended student system requirements to ensure you are able to participate fully in your learning. Other information is also available about the various Learning Platforms you may use.

Staff Feedback

Students will be given feedback in the following forms in this course:

  • written comments
  • verbal comments
  • feedback to whole class, groups, individuals, focus group etc

Student Feedback

ANU 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). Feedback can also be provided to Course Conveners and teachers via the Student Experience of Learning & Teaching (SELT) feedback program. SELT surveys are confidential and also provide the Colleges and ANU Executive with opportunities to recognise excellent teaching, and opportunities for improvement.

Class Schedule

Week/Session Summary of Activities Assessment
1 Introduction to the Post-Soviet Countries of Central Asia and the Caucasus (CAC) and the Concept of Energy Security
2 Caspian Oil Reserves, Their Connection to World Markets and Transportation Dilemmas
3 Geopolitics of Gas Exports Discussion of essay progress
4 The Caspian Sea Legal Status Dispute Discussion of essay progress
5 Russia: Old Patron, New Competitor Discussion of essay progress
6 Western Involvement: The US and EU Discussion of essay progress
7 China's Rise as the Energy Hegemon ?Discussion of essay progress
8 Regional Conflicts, Terrorism and Energy Security in the South Caucasus and Central Asia Research essay is due by 4pm on Wednesday, 26 April
9 Energy Development and Domestic Issues – Economics
10 Energy Development and Domestic Issues – Politics
11 Oil, Gas and the Environment
12 Prospects for Green Energy Transition in Central Asia and the Caucasus
13 Final Exam Open-book take home exam

Tutorial Registration

ANU utilises MyTimetable to enable students to view the timetable for their enrolled courses, browse, then self-allocate to small teaching activities / tutorials so they can better plan their time. Find out more on the Timetable webpage.

Assessment Summary

Assessment task Value Due Date Learning Outcomes
Major research essay in the format of a journal article 60 % 26/04/2023 1-5
End of the semester exam 40 % *

* If the Due Date and Return of Assessment date are blank, see the Assessment Tab for specific Assessment Task details


ANU has educational policies, procedures and guidelines , which are designed to ensure that staff and students are aware of the University’s academic standards, and implement them. Students are expected to have read the Academic Integrity Rule before the commencement of their course. Other key policies and guidelines include:

Assessment Requirements

The 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 Academic Skills website. In rare cases where online submission using Turnitin software is not technically possible; or where not using Turnitin software has been justified by the Course Convener and approved by the Associate Dean (Education) on the basis of the teaching model being employed; students shall submit assessment online via ‘Wattle’ outside of Turnitin, or failing that in hard copy, or through a combination of submission methods as approved by the Associate Dean (Education). The submission method is detailed below.

Moderation of Assessment

Marks 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

Value: 60 %
Due Date: 26/04/2023
Learning Outcomes: 1-5

Major research essay in the format of a journal article

The major essay:

·    Is due no later than 4.00pm Wednesday, 26 April 2023

·    Must be on a topic selected from the list to be supplied in Week 2 and on Wattle. Alternatively, you may choose your own topic. However, if designing your own topic, you must approve the question with me prior to Wednesday, 29 March.

·    Must be 5,000 words in length (± 10%).

·    Should be written in the format of a journal article in order to gain familiarity with the process of scientific publishing – essential knowledge for further graduate studies. As such, your ‘article’ should include an abstract and be formatted according to the technical requirements of your target journal, such as Energy Policy or ENERPO (Energy Politics of EurasiaJournal. As part of the seminars, we will have several mini-workshops on best practices in academic writing and publishing, including a guest speaker from the ENERPO editorial board. While the journal article format is merely a practice exercise, if you do wish to submit your article to a journal after the course, I am glad to provide additional feedback on the revised version.

·    Will count for 60% of the total course assessment and final mark.

·    Will be assessed against one or more of Learning Outcomes 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5, and on (in descending order of importance):

—  whether and how well the question is answered;

—  whether and how well an argument is presented;

—  the factual accuracy of the essay;

—  the depth and sophistication of research demonstrated in the essay;

—  whether academic conventions have been followed; and

—  the technical quality of the essay.

·    Must be submitted electronically on Wattle, using the Turnitin protocol on the course site. Essays submitted in any other way may not be received or accepted, unless an alternative submission means has been previously agreed with the course convener.

Assessment Task 2

Value: 40 %
Learning Outcomes: 

End of the semester exam

The final examination:

· Will be held during the First Semester examination period (1-17 June 2023 inclusive). Students must make themselves available to sit the examination at any time

during this period.

· Will be of 24 hours’ duration and follow the online open-book format.

· Will entail answering two questions in a flexible format (could be essay-like, dot-point, poetic, etc,) -- advice on the structure and content of the examination will be

provided during seminars.

· Will count for 40% of the total course assessment and final mark.

· Will be assessed with particular reference to one or more of Learning Outcomes 1, 3 and 5, and on (in descending order of importance):

— whether and how well the questions posed are answered;

— whether and how well facts and arguments, as applicable, are presented in the answers;

— the depth and sophistication of knowledge and understanding demonstrated in the examination.

Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is a core part of the ANU culture as a community of scholars. The University’s students are an integral part of that community. The academic integrity principle commits all students to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support, academic integrity, and to uphold this commitment by behaving honestly, responsibly and ethically, and with respect and fairness, in scholarly practice.

The University expects all staff and students to be familiar with the academic integrity principle, the Academic Integrity Rule 2021, the Policy: Student Academic Integrity and Procedure: Student Academic Integrity, and to uphold high standards of academic integrity to ensure the quality and value of our qualifications.

The Academic Integrity Rule 2021 is a legal document that the University uses to promote academic integrity, and manage breaches of the academic integrity principle. The Policy and Procedure support the Rule by outlining overarching principles, responsibilities and processes. The Academic Integrity Rule 2021 commences on 1 December 2021 and applies to courses commencing on or after that date, as well as to research conduct occurring on or after that date. Prior to this, the Academic Misconduct Rule 2015 applies.


The University commits to assisting all students to understand how to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support academic integrity. All coursework students must complete the online Academic Integrity Module (Epigeum), and Higher Degree Research (HDR) students are required to complete research integrity training. The Academic Integrity website provides information about services available to assist students with their assignments, examinations and other learning activities, as well as understanding and upholding academic integrity.

Online Submission

You will be required to electronically sign a declaration as part of the submission of your assignment. Please keep a copy of the assignment for your records. Unless an exemption has been approved by the Associate Dean (Education) submission must be through Turnitin.

Hardcopy Submission

For some forms of assessment (hand written assignments, art works, laboratory notes, etc.) hard copy submission is appropriate when approved by the Associate Dean (Education). Hard copy submissions must utilise the Assignment Cover Sheet. Please keep a copy of tasks completed for your records.

Late Submission

Individual assessment tasks may or may not allow for late submission. Policy regarding late submission is detailed below:

  • Late submission not permitted. If submission of assessment tasks without an extension after the due date is not permitted, a mark of 0 will be awarded.
  • Late submission permitted. Late submission of assessment tasks without an extension are penalised at the rate of 5% of the possible marks available per working day or part thereof. Late submission of assessment tasks is not accepted after 10 working days after the due date, or on or after the date specified in the course outline for the return of the assessment item. Late submission is not accepted for take-home examinations.

Referencing Requirements

The Academic Skills website has information to assist you with your writing and assessments. The website includes information about Academic Integrity including referencing requirements for different disciplines. There is also information on Plagiarism and different ways to use source material.

Extensions and Penalties

Extensions and late submission of assessment pieces are covered by the Student Assessment (Coursework) Policy and Procedure. Extensions may be granted for assessment pieces that are not examinations or take-home examinations. If you need an extension, you must request an extension in writing on or before the due date. If you have documented and appropriate medical evidence that demonstrates you were not able to request an extension on or before the due date, you may be able to request it after the due date.

Resubmission of Assignments

Resubmission of assignments is not allowed.

Privacy Notice

The ANU has made a number of third party, online, databases available for students to use. Use of each online database is conditional on student end users first agreeing to the database licensor’s terms of service and/or privacy policy. Students should read these carefully. In some cases student end users will be required to register an account with the database licensor and submit personal information, including their: first name; last name; ANU email address; and other information.
In cases where student end users are asked to submit ‘content’ to a database, such as an assignment or short answers, the database licensor may only use the student’s ‘content’ in accordance with the terms of service – including any (copyright) licence the student grants to the database licensor. Any personal information or content a student submits may be stored by the licensor, potentially offshore, and will be used to process the database service in accordance with the licensors terms of service and/or privacy policy.
If any student chooses not to agree to the database licensor’s terms of service or privacy policy, the student will not be able to access and use the database. In these circumstances students should contact their lecturer to enquire about alternative arrangements that are available.

Distribution of grades policy

Academic Quality Assurance Committee monitors the performance of students, including attrition, further study and employment rates and grade distribution, and College reports on quality assurance processes for assessment activities, including alignment with national and international disciplinary and interdisciplinary standards, as well as qualification type learning outcomes.

Since first semester 1994, ANU uses a grading scale for all courses. This grading scale is used by all academic areas of the University.

Support for students

The University offers students support through several different services. You may contact the services listed below directly or seek advice from your Course Convener, Student Administrators, or your College and Course representatives (if applicable).

Dana Rice

Research Interests

Poaching for caviar in the Caspian Sea

Dana Rice

Wednesday 13:00 15:00
Wednesday 13:00 15:00
By Appointment
Dana Rice

Research Interests

Dana Rice

Wednesday 13:00 15:00
Wednesday 13:00 15:00
By Appointment

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