• Offered by Crawford School of Public Policy
  • ANU College ANU College of Asia and the Pacific
  • Classification Specialist
  • Course subject Policy and Governance
  • Areas of interest Policy Studies
  • Academic career PGRD
  • Mode of delivery Online or In Person

This course is available for on-campus & remote (online) learning. All students participate in interactive, real-time classes.

Poverty remains one of the most significant policy challenges facing the world today. In countries across the global South and the global North there is a need for urgency in addressing poverty, reflected in the first of the Sustainable Development Goals. While there was progress in addressing extreme poverty in the first two decades of the twenty-first century, the global coronavirus pandemic has resulted in that trend being reversed, with tens of millions – perhaps billions – of people being plunged into poverty. Poverty constrains, and sometimes destroys, the lives of individuals. It is a denial of basic human rights and undermines the development of human capital and the progress of well-being.  Yet even the definition of poverty is contested and ways of measuring and addressing it are intensely debated.

This course will equip students to understand those debates. It will examine the policies and programs that have achieved success and those that have missed the mark.  It will cover:-

  • Conceptualisations and definitions of poverty.
  • Debates around poverty measurement and various approaches.
  • Intersections of gender, age, disability, location, ethnicity and poverty.
  • The relationship between inequality, marginalisation, and poverty.
  • The ongoing implications of colonisation and global maldistribution.
  • Policy and programs to reduce poverty.
  • The evolution of global thinking around poverty reduction, including the Sustainable Development Goals and SDG1.

Learning Outcomes

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

  1. Analyse complex theories and debates around reducing poverty.
  2. Debate key perspectives on definitions and measurement of poverty.
  3. Distinguish and demonstrate an advanced understanding of the social groups that are especially vulnerable to poverty.
  4. Understand the interconnections between poverty and marginalisation and inequality.
  5. Analyse the policies and programs that have achieved success and those that have not.
  6. Demonstrate knowledge to develop policies and programs to reduce poverty.

Indicative Assessment

  1. Three pieces of class-based assessment (worksheets/quizzes) (150 words each) (15) [LO 1,2]
  2. Infographic and mini-presentation (infographic - 800 words; mini-presentation - 5 minutes) (35) [LO 1,2,6]
  3. Essay (3000 words) (50) [LO 3,4,5,6]

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.


A standard workload for a 6 unit course is 130 hours including in class time and independent study.

Inherent Requirements

Not applicable

Prescribed Texts


Preliminary Reading

Readings will be available on the Wattle course site.


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
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.

There are no current offerings for this course.

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