Advanced Public Management

Subject PPMN90006 (2010)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2010.

Credit Points: 25
Level: 9 (Graduate/Postgraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2010:

March, Parkville - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period not applicable
Assessment Period End not applicable
Last date to Self-Enrol not applicable
Census Date not applicable
Last date to Withdraw without fail not applicable

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: This subject will be taught as an intensive program from 9.00am to 5.00pm on Friday 26 March, Saturday 27 March, Friday 16 April and Friday 7 May, 2010.
Total Time Commitment: Not available
Prerequisites: Admission to the Master of Public Policy and Management (100 point program), or the Master of Policy Studies (ASST).
Corequisites: This is a compulsory/core subject in the Master of Public Policy and Management (100-point program) and the Master of Arts Policy Studies (ASST).
Recommended Background Knowledge: none
Non Allowed Subjects: none
Core Participation Requirements:

For the purposes of considering request for Reasonable Adjustments under the disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Students Experiencing Academic Disadvantage Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Description, Subject Objectives, Generic Skills and Assessment Requirements of this entry.

The University is dedicated to provide support to those with special requirements. Further details on the disability support scheme can be found at the Disability Liaison Unit website:


Dr Kate Macdonald


Dr. Kate Macdonald

Subject Overview:

This subject explores the strategies and instruments that public managers use to implement public policy. We will review several key aspects of the management role including: how public managers support the development and implantation of good public policy. how the management role fits within the framework of government and governance in different systems. how strategic management can be conceptualised and practiced in the public sector. and how questions of responsibility, accountability and performance are defined in the public sector as compared to private enterprise. We will examine the systemic and environmental imperatives which frame the manager"s experience, including shifts from traditional notions of bureaucracy to contemporary approaches of contracting, performance management, network governance and partnerships. To understand the manager"s perspective we will use a case study method supported by theoretical and evidence-based texts from Australia and elsewhere. Emphasis will be placed upon developing strong analytical and practical management skills, a detailed understanding of accountability issues, and an ability to strategize from a management perspective. The subject will require students to develop and present a case study of a public management challenge through research on a current case, together with an analytical treatment of options and dilemmas.

  • have a thorough knowledge of contemporary theories and methods of public sector management.
  • have skills in evaluating current policy trends, programs and management practices.
  • be familiar with issues of privatisation and contracting out, the monitoring of contracts and broader accountability issues.
Assessment: 1. Case study analysis of 2000 words (15%) to be submitted on 8 April. 2. A group project, including a group presentation (15%) scheduled on 7 May, and an individual report of 3500 words (25%) due 20 May. and 3. An individual essay of 4500 words (45%) due 10 June.
Prescribed Texts:

A subject reader will be available for purchase from the University Bookshop.

Ewan Ferlie, Laurence Lynn, Christopher Pollitt (Eds), 2005, The Oxford Handbook of Public Managment, Oxford University Press, Oxford.

Breadth Options:

This subject is not available as a breadth subject.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:
  • be able to demonstrate competence in critical, creative and theoretical thinking through essay writing, seminar discussion and presentations, conceptualising theoretical problems, forming judgments and arguments from conflicting evidence, and by critical analysis.
  • be able to demonstrate proficiency in the application of policy analysis skills to empirical problems.
  • be able to demonstrate an understanding of the academic protocols of research and presentation.
Related Course(s): Master of Arts (Policy Studies)(Advanced Seminars & Shorter Thesis)
Master of Public Policy and Management (Coursework)

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