Course Title: Policy Practice (Environment and Planning)

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Policy Practice (Environment and Planning)

Credit Points: 12


Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


330H Social Science & Planning


Sem 1 2006


City Campus


365H Global, Urban and Social Studies


Sem 1 2007,
Sem 1 2008,
Sem 1 2009,
Sem 1 2010,
Sem 1 2011,
Sem 1 2012,
Sem 2 2013,
Sem 2 2014,
Sem 2 2015,
Sem 2 2016,
Sem 2 2017,
Sem 2 2018

Course Coordinator: Melissa Neave

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 2512

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Location: 8.7.

Course Coordinator Availability: By appointment

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities


Course Description

This course explores the way in which policy making and implementation shape environmental governance and planning.

Policy-making theory and practice and policy processes in Australia form the basis of the syllabus. Emphasis will be given to the key aspects of policy development, implementation and evaluation in order to explore the factors which influence on each of these aspects and what needs to be considered for effective policy making and implementation.

These points will be expanded by the consideration of policy-making and implementation processes at global, national, state and local levels, as well as that adopted by private industry. In particular, exploration of policy will provide you with a context for investigating the role of public and private policy, the interconnections of layers of policy-making, and the organisational and structural processes that influence policy processes.

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

At the end of this course you will have:

  • developed a critical understanding of the formal and informal processes of policy
  • begun to understand the theories of policy-making
  • developed policy analysis skills 
  • developed understanding of the organisational and social structures that affect policy
  • gained an understanding of the extent of environmental policy, both public and private

You will:

  • develop a critical and analytical understanding of the formal and informal processes of policy
  • become familiar with the theories of policy-making associated with the key stages of policy formulation, implementation and evaluation
  • recognise how policy is initiated, developed, and influenced by groups within government and the general community, and by scientific and technical knowledge
  • develop an appreciation of the connections within and between public and private policy
  • identify the factors which act as facilitators and as barriers to policy making
  • analyse the organisational and social structures that affect policy, especially its implementation
  • examine selected examples of policy to discover the roles of policy and its effects
  • gain an understanding of the extent of environmental policy at a variety of levels – international, Commonwealth of Australia, Victoria, local government and private industry
  • appreciate the inter-governmental mechanisms used to link environmental policy
  • understand the mechanisms used to implement environmental policy.

In this course you will develop the following program learning outcomes:

• Apply a body of theoretical and practical knowledge of principles and practices in natural resource management, sustainability, globalisation and environmental management to professional practice or further study.
• Critically analyse, synthesise and reflect on knowledge related to the social implications of environmental concerns and challenges both in Australia and globally.
• Apply logical, critical and creative thinking to effectively solve a range of problems associated with environmental monitoring and management and associated policies and practices.
• Work effectively and productively with others in a range of roles in a variety of professional and social contexts.
• Communicate effectively using appropriate formats, media and styles to a range of audiences including other professionals, the public, government and non-government agencies and develop collaborative partnerships.
• Assist in the identification of needs, the design, planning, resourcing and implementation of research and development projects in environmental and social sustainability.
• Reflect on the experience of personal and professional practice in international and cross-cultural settings and to act in professional settings

Overview of Learning Activities

Discussions and debate are an integral part of the course whereby you are part of a community to discuss ideas and experiences in the workshops.

Overview of Learning Resources

A list of relevant texts, library resources (Including appropriate journals) and freely accessible Internet sites will be available to you. Other material will be provided in class.
You will be able to access course information and learning materials through myRMIT studies

Overview of Assessment

Assessment tasks for this course comprise written assignments during the semester and preparation of, and participation in, a weekly workshop.