• Offered by Crawford School of Public Policy
  • ANU College ANU College of Asia and the Pacific
  • Course subject Crawford School of Public Policy
  • Areas of interest Policy Studies
  • Academic career PGRD
  • Course convener
    • Prof Janine O'Flynn
  • Mode of delivery Online or In Person
  • Offered in Summer Session 2024
    See Future Offerings

Course is available for on-campus & remote (online) learning. Students participate in interactive, real-time classes. 2024 dates: February 13,14 & 15

This course introduces Higher Degree Research students to the main paradigms, concepts, and approaches to researching public policy, and establishes the present and potential role of applied public policy interventions in effectively responding to key problems in the contemporary world. The course offers training and knowledge in the production, assessment and communication of research in public policy. The course provides a common introductory grounding in public policy as a multi-disciplinary field of research. 


Fostering Public Policy Research orients students to the meaning of research excellence in public policy, from a variety of disciplinary and methodological perspectives. The course critically engages with public policy research methodologies and practices across key sub-disciplines. 


Student engagement will be promoted through a series of sessions led by the Crawford School scholars across the four Higher Degree Research programs in the Crawford School. The course will feature plenaries or roundtables with public policy experts and practitioners. Case studies of public policy interventions and outcomes will be presented and discussed. Students will reflect on how their Higher Degree Reearch program will align with and engage with the concerns and methodologies of public policy research in Australia and/or internationally. 

 This is a compulsory course for all Crawford School PhD students.

Learning Outcomes

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

  1. Explain what public policy is, and why it matters.
  2. Exhibit fluency with key concepts and paradigms of public policy scholarship.
  3. Understand questions, methodological approaches, and practices of public policy research across key disciplines and contexts.
  4. Clarify how their PhD research aligns with the public policy discipline or public policy concerns.

Indicative Assessment

  1. Critical reflection paper (1) (500 words) (30) [LO 1,2,3]
  2. Short Class Presentation (10 mins) (30) [LO 1,2,3,4]
  3. Student research statement on public policy (800 words) (40) [LO 4]

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.


Total contact time is 15 hours, conducted in person, 2.5 hours x 6 meetings. This is an intensive course.

Outside of contact hours: Preparation time of no less than 3 hours for every 2.5 hour session.

Requisite and Incompatibility

To enrol in this course you must be enrolled in PhD Crawford School of Public Policy

You will need to contact the Crawford School of Public Policy to request a permission code to enrol in this course.

Prescribed Texts

Will be flexible based on specific sessional conveners

Preliminary Reading

  • Theories of and in the Policy Process, David L. Weimer, The Policy Studies Journal, Vol. 36, No. 4, 2008, 
  • Policy Theory, Policy Theory Everywhere: Ravings of a Deranged Policy Scholar, Kenneth J. Meier, The Policy Studies Journal, Vol. 37, No. 1, 2009
  • Wild Policy: Indigeneity and the Unruly Logics of Intervention, Tess Lea, Stanford University Press, 2020
  • Patton, C. D. Sawicki, and J. Clark (2013). Basic Methods of Policy Analysis and Planning. London: Routledge. Read Chapter 2 The Policy Analysis Process & Chapter 3 Cross-cutting Methods. (pp. 21-133)
  • Evans, D. (2015). Bridge the Gap between Research and Policy, One Panel Discussion (and 145 Studies) at a Time.
  • https://blogs.worldbank.org/impactevaluations/bridge-gap-between-research-and-policy-one-panel-discussion-and-145-studies-time
  • Connelly, S. and C. Anderson (2007). “Studying water: reflections on the problems and possibilities of interdisciplinary working.” Interdisciplinary Science Reviews. 32(3): 213-220.
  • Faustino, J. and R. Fabella (2011). “Engendering Reform.” pp. 1-16. In The Asia Foundation. Built on Dreams, Grounded in Reality: Economic Policy Reform in the Philippines. Makati City: The Asia Foundation.  
  • Russell-Smith, J. et al. (2015). “Moving Beyond Evidence-Free Environmental Policy.” Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment. 13(8): 441-448.
  • Sutton, Rebecca (1999). The Policy Process: An Overview. Working Paper No. 118. Overseas Development Institute: London.
  • Wedel, J. et al. (2005). “Toward an Anthropology of Public Policy.” Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science. 600: 30-51.
  • World Bank (2008). The Political Economy of Policy Reform: Issues and Implications for Policy Dialogue and Development Operations. Social Development Department. November 2008.


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

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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.

Summer Session

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
1530 13 Feb 2024 02 Jan 2024 30 Mar 2024 15 Feb 2024 In Person View
1531 13 Feb 2024 02 Jan 2024 30 Mar 2024 15 Feb 2024 Online View

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