• Total units 24 Units
  • Areas of interest Policy Studies
  • Specialisation code PUFN-SPEC
This specialisation engages students in the question of financing government and the interaction of tax, spending and fiscal policies with the market economy in an era of fiscal austerity, growing inequality and economic disruption. Students examine the policies, institutions and regulatory structures for raising public finance, and for managing public expenditures. Students will examine principles and conceptual benchmarks of public finance policy including efficiency, equity and redistribution, and administration and compliance and will learn about the politics of taxation and expenditures. They will understand the core features of budget and fiscal institutions in the executive, legislature and role of the judiciary. Particular emphasis is given to the way in which taxes and expenditures interact with, shape and are themselves affected by market, household and individual decisions in the contemporary national and global economy.

Learning Outcomes

  1. Demonstrate a working knowledge of core principles of public finance, fiscal instruments and institutions, and the budget process.

  2. Engage critically in theoretical and practical literature on tax and expenditure policy.

  3. Analyse and understand the gap and interaction between theory and practice for taxes, spending and the budget.

  4. Reflect critically on the role of taxes and expenditures in market and private decision making and other areas of public policy.

  5. Demonstrate the ability to engage actively in reform debates about taxes and expenditures, management of the budget in times of austerity and the use of fiscal policy in the economy.

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This specialisation requires the completion of 24 units, which must consist of:

12 units from completion of the following compulsory courses:

POGO8048 Public Finance

POGO8057 Managing Government Finances


12 units from completion of courses from the following list:

IDEC8025 Empirical Public Finance

IDEC8088 Cost-Benefit Analysis: Principles and Practice

POGO8004 Poverty Reduction

POGO8021 Public Sector Ethics

POGO8025 Social Policy Analysis

POGO8044 Global Social Policy

POGO8080 Organisational Finance and Budgeting


This specialisation is available only to students undertaking the Master of Public Policy.

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