Not currently offered
Course code



10 units


6000 level

Course handbook


The course explores themes in public policy and public sector administration. This begins with an introduction to liberal democratic systems with an emphasis on policy development and public sector administration. The course draws upon recent theoretical literature to explore the evolving field of public policy within the public sector. Several case studies are examined to reveal the practical application of theory, in a critical manner. The trend towards private sector methods in the public sector and other recent trends are critically examined.


Not currently offered.

This Course was last offered in Trimester 3 - 2020.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of the course students will be able to:

1. Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the nature and significance of liberal democratic processes of governance and public accountability

2. Apply concepts and theories used in the study of public administration to the analysis of interests, ideas, and institutions within the public sector.

3. Critically evaluate different interpretations of policy outcomes.

4. Use the different research methods used to investigate public policy.

5. Develop evidence-based argument and evaluation.

6. Gather, organise and use evidence from a variety of secondary and primary sources.

7. Identify, investigate, analyse, formulate and advocate solutions to problems.

8. Communicate effectively in oral and/or written work.

9. Recognise the importance of ethical standards of conduct in the research and analysis of policy.


The content in this course includes the following topics:

  • Liberal democratic governance: theory & practice
  • Critical approaches to public sector theory and practice
  • Regulation frameworks and regulatory agencies
  • Approaches to accountability
  • Stakeholders, pluralism, and policy networks
  • Analysis of particular policy cases
  • Analysis of Public sector institutions
  • Public Private Partnerships
  • Privatization and re-nationalisation

Assumed knowledge

The assumed knowledge for this course is GSBS6004 Organisational Behaviour and Design

Assessment items

Quiz: In-Class Test/Quiz

Report: Major Written Report

Presentation: Group Oral Presentation Exercise

Formal Examination: Final Examination

The University of Newcastle acknowledges the traditional custodians of the lands within our footprint areas: Awabakal, Darkinjung, Biripai, Worimi, Wonnarua, and Eora Nations. We also pay respect to the wisdom of our Elders past and present.