• Offered by Department of Pacific Affairs
  • ANU College ANU College of Asia and the Pacific
  • Course subject Pacific Studies
  • Areas of interest Pacific Studies
  • Academic career PGRD
  • Course convener
    • Sonia Palmieri
  • Mode of delivery Online or In Person
  • Offered in Autumn Session 2024
    See Future Offerings

This course is designed for current and prospective policy makers and aid professionals involved in the design and implementation of aid projects in the Pacific. Adopting an evidence-based and multi-disciplinary approach, it examines critically the challenges of aid programming in the Pacific context. Beginning with an assessment of the political and development context in the region, the course considers how the Pacific context complicates key elements of the design and implementation process, including: partnering with local actors, developing a context-responsive theory of change, monitoring and evaluating, and managing risk and inclusivity. The course has a strong practical focus based around four Pacific case studies in the areas of governance, gender, health and education.

Topics of study include:

  • The political and development context in the Pacific
  • Theories of change
  • Locally-led development - Partnering with local actors
  • Monitoring and evaluation in a Pacific context
  • Risk Management and Sustainability
  • Inclusivity in Pacific program design
  • Program implementation in a Pacific context
  • Thinking and working politically in the Pacific
  • Case studies

Learning Outcomes

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

  1. Identify key stages and actors in program design and implementation
  2. Define the development contexts in the Pacific and their relevance to aid programming.
  3. Determine the relevant drivers of the political economy in which aid programs are designed.
  4. Critically assess different programming modalities used in Pacific development programs.
  5. Design an original development program that is fit for purpose in a Pacific context.

Indicative Assessment

  1. Problem Identification and Theory of Change critical review (30) [LO 1,2,3]
  2. Aid design project (70) [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.


This course comprises some 130 hours of activity over 12 weeks, both interactive/seminar based and independent research. The course comprises a maximum of 6k words of assessment or the equivalent. Please note this is a general guide, averaged over the semester and the final hours ultimately depend on the individual's ability in reading and writing.


Inherent Requirements

Not applicable

Prescribed Texts

Prescribed texts not required

Preliminary Reading

1.    Barbara, J. with Baker, K., Improving the Electoral Chances of Pacific Women through an Evidence-Based Approach: A Synthesis Report prepared for the Centre for Democratic Institutions and the State, Society and Governance in Melanesia Program, December (23 pages):

2.    Barbara, J. (2018), Thinking and working politically in the Vanuatu skills sector: Supporting Local Leadership and Building a Political Constituency for Change,

3.    Derbyshire, H., Siow, O., Gibson, S., Hudson, D. and Roche, C. (2018) From Silos to Synergy: Learning from Politically Informed, Gender Aware Programs, Developmental Leadership Program.

4.    Honig, D. (2018) Navigation by Judgment: Why and When Top Down Management of Foreign Aid Doesn't Work, Oxford University Press.

5.    Laws, E. and Marquette, H. (2018.) Thinking and working politically: reviewing the evidence on the integration of politics into development practice over the past decade

6.    Vanuatu Skills Partnership - Skills for Prosperity: Investment Design Document, May 2017:


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
2024 $4440
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2024 $6360
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

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.

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.

Autumn Session

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
5497 01 Apr 2024 19 Apr 2024 19 Apr 2024 30 Jun 2024 In Person N/A
5510 01 Apr 2024 19 Apr 2024 19 Apr 2024 30 Jun 2024 Online View

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