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Undergraduate | MAQ-POIX2070-2023

Governance, Power and Public Policy

Previously MAQ-POIX207

Get a thorough overview of the process of developing Australian government policy. Query the role of the public service. Shine a light on dilemmas that can arise. Draw on local examples that illustrate the complexity of the policy-making process.

Study method

100% online


100% online

Entry requirements

Prior study needed


18 weeks

Start dates

  • 20 Feb 2023

HECS-HELP and FEE-HELP available

About this subject

What you'll learn

On successful completion of this subject, you will be able to:

  1. Explain and critically analyse the way in which power and politics impact on public policy and the policy process
  2. Identify the range of actors and institutions involved in the policy process, using the Australian example as the basis for comparison with other policy environments
  3. Analyse the role of different actors and institutions in influencing policy in networks, subsystems or communities
  4. Identify, critically analyse and discuss the major debates and controversies involved in this subject, including debates around the proper role of government, the shift from government to governance, the impact of globalisation, and the role of public and interest group participation in the policy process
  5. Recognise, understand and apply the most common theoretical approaches used in studying politics and policy, and identify differences and similarities between them
  6. Analyse the policy-making process using several different models, or theories, and critically evaluate these by applying them to real-world case studies, and demonstrating their strengths and weaknesses

    • Introduction; Government
    • Parliament and Policy
    • Policy Actors
    • The Media as Policy Agenda Settlers; ideology Economics and Public Policy
    • Keynes and Neo-Liberalism
    • Market Failure
    • Globalisation
    • Power
    • Governance
    • Economic Policy
    • Social Policy
  • This subject was previously known as POIX207 Governance, Power and Public Policy.

    This subject introduces students to contemporary debates about how public policy problems are addressed. It does this by tracing the change from government to governance and considers the range of policy instruments now regularly used to respond to policy problems. This includes, for example, the use of market based solutions in a range of policy areas. Students are also introduced to key actors and institutions, as well as to relevant theories for analysing public policy.

    • Online presentation and discussion (10%)
    • Research Essay (50%)
    • Take-Home Exam (40%)
  • For textbook details check your university's handbook, website or learning management system (LMS).

  • This research-intensive university in north-western Sydney offers a range of undergraduate and postgraduate degrees. With over 44,000 current students, Macquarie has a strong reputation for welcoming international students and embracing flexible and convenient study options, including its partnership with Open Universities Australia.

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Entry requirements

Prior study

You must have successfully completed the following subject(s) before starting this subject:

Equivalent subjects

You should not enrol in this subject if you have successfully completed any of the following subject(s) because they are considered academically equivalent:

  • MAQ-PLTX270 (Not currently available)

  • MAQ-PLT370 (Not currently available)

  • MAQ-POIX207 (Not currently available)


NCCW (pre-2020 units) PLTX270, POL207, POL307, POL374, POIX207 Pre-requisite: 40cp at 1000 level or above OR (10cp in POL or POIR or POIX units) NCCW (2020 and onwards) POIR2070 Governance, Power and Public Policy

Additional requirements

  • Other requirements -

    Students who have an Academic Standing of Suspension or Exclusion under Macquarie University's Academic Progression Policy are not permitted to enrol in OUA units offered by Macquarie University. Students with an Academic Standing of Suspension or Exclusion who have enrolled in units through OUA will be withdrawn.

What to study next?

Once you’ve completed this subject it can be credited towards one of the following degrees

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Bachelor of Arts

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