Online Training

A Toolkit for Effective Public Policy  

Build strong foundational skills to affect positive community, economic and social outcomes

9 & 16 July 2024

10:00 AM - 2:30 PM AEST

Next intake: 9 & 16 July 2024 | 10:00 AM - 2:30 PM AEST

Overview

This course has been developed specifically for public sector professionals in Australia and New Zealand who are new to policy or looking to build a better understanding of the business of government and policymaking.

Participants will learn how to apply analytical tools and frameworks to understand the problems they may be facing, improve their decision-making processes, and produce effective, evidence-based policy solutions.

It will investigate the issues that impact the creation of rigorous policies, including considering what rational decision-making is. It will equip you with frameworks to understand individual and group decision-making behaviours, and how to overcome some of the problems that arise.

The course delves into policy-making components, using case studies, group discussions, and small group activities to foster active participation and learning.

 

Who Should Attend?

This course is for people who are new to government and policymaking, taking on a policy role or looking to enhance their policy acumen.
Policy Officer | Policy Analyst | Research Officer
Assistant Policy Advisor | Government Relations Coordinator | Public Affairs Specialist
Legislative Assistant | Program Coordinator
Communications Officer | Project Officer

Learning Outcomes

Problem Definition and Assessment
Build insights into Evidence-Based Policy
Explore Policy Development and Design Skills
Navigate Stakeholder Communication and Public Participation

Online Training

A Toolkit for Effective Public Policy  


Session details

  • Build a solid understanding of the essential principles, concepts, and processes involved in public policy.
  • Gain skills to make informed and effective decisions in the realm of public policy.
  • An opportunity to network and benchmark with your peers.
View course modules

Level: Fundamentals

No previous experience necessary

or

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This course requires 1 credit.

Key Sessions

An Introduction to Public Policy

  • The definition of public policy 
  • Australian system of Government and role of key institutions (eg Westminster system of responsible government, constitution, role of executive/judiciary/parliament, tenets of public service within this.)
  • Business of government, ministers and their role in public policy 
  • The political and social environment in which policy is made

 

The Process 

  • Key Stages in the Policy and Program Cycle: Tools and frameworks of public policy (The Australian Policy Cycle)
  • Understanding roles and responsibilities
  • The Federal System of Government in Australia and how it impacts policy
  • Contestability in policy advice (eg role of outside actors in policy)

Designing Effective Policy

  • Policy Instruments – how governments achieve their objectives
  • Principles of good policy design
  • Understand how to identify suitable instruments
  • Discussing the key challenges and strategies to overcome them
  • Forces and events that impact policy development

 

An Overview of the Tools Used in Policy Development 

  • Regulatory Impact Assessment 
  •  Cost Benefit Analysis 
  •  Intervention Logic 

  • Group discussion – what are some wicked policy problems facing Australia? 
  • How to Define and Assess Policy Issues 
  • Discussing when government intervention is called for 
  • How to define the problem and establishing a vision 

 

  • Group activity in breakout rooms  - responding to key wicked policy problems facing Australia
  • Challenges in Using Evidence for Australian Policymakers
  • Critiquing Data and Evidence
  • Navigating Challenges in Evidence-Based Policymaking
  • Newer forms of assessment and public policy

  • Communicating and Employing Data and Evidence Effectively 
  • Principles and Practices in Communicating Data and Evidence 
  • Strategies for Effective Communication in Policy and Program Design and presenting to decision-makers 
  • Real-world Examples of Successful and Unsuccessful Communication of Data and Evidence

 

Stakeholder groups, Public Participation and Policymaking 

  • Importance of Stakeholder Groups and Public Engagement in Australian Policy
  • Working with First Nations groups
  • Newer forms of engagement
  • Case Study on Unsuccessful  Robodebt Royal Commission report (Breakout group discussion, following by report back)
  • Strategies for Inclusive Policymaking
  • Leadership skills and mindsets needed for good policy advice
  • Resources for further information

Meet Your Facilitator

Aaron Johnstone

Founder and Director | INTERACT Policy and Industry Solutions

Aaron Johnstone is a public policy expert with a career spanning almost three decades. With a broad range of networks in industry and government, he has built a reputation as an effective collaborator and strategic leader who understands and connects industry and government.

Aaron began his career in Canberra as a Graduate in the Australian Government in 1995, joining the public service out of an eager desire to make a meaningful contribution to social and economic prosperity. He holds a BA in Government and History from the University of Queensland and an Executive Master of Public Administration from the University of Melbourne (ANZSOG).

His career highlights include:

  • Research, project management, and analytical support of Commonwealth-State agreements on skills reforms and funding with the Australian National Training Authority.
  • Providing strategic political and policy advice as a Ministerial Adviser for the Hon Anna Bligh MP during her tenure in the Beattie State Government Cabinet.
  • Devising and managing communication strategies for Westminster City Council in central London on transport, urban development, and planning.
  • Managing education and training policy reform in various State Government bodies in Queensland and Victoria.

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