Policy Studies in Australia is gaining in prominence – and relevance – in policy debates for its considerable theoretical and disciplinary heterogeneity.
Born of inter-disciplinary research interests, its core questions and assumptions are amenable to a fulsome spectrum of research traditions, whether interpretivist, critical, normative or positivist.
This research diversity is a strength. Both nationally and internationally the dynamics of public policy continue to undergo radical transformations. In this context, there is an abundance of new and old policy puzzles, challenges and idiosyncrasies that are as much a matter of public as scholarly debate. Keeping track, and making sense, of these debates is a matter of understanding the complex interactions between the state, technology, society and communities, the environment, politics, the economy, and more. Policy Studies is seated at the intersection of these interactions and, in doing so, offers insights to the array of fundamental – and sometimes contradictory – analytical, causal, hermeneutic and normative dynamics of public policy.
The Policy Studies Research Group therefore advocates a ‘broad church’ approach. It accommodates allied and intersecting research interests from Public Administration, Political Science, Geography, Economics, Sociology, International Relations and beyond. It embraces diversity in participation from all career levels; from PhD students and early-career researchers to mid-career and senior scholars. It also welcomes those engaged in policy as practitioners in local, state and federal government. Finally, it looks beyond Australia to include regional and international researchers. This inclusive approach, we believe, feeds the growth of Policy Studies’ theoretical innovation, engenders novel collaborations, stimulates the development (and robust application of) new methodologies and methods and, ultimately, creates an environment in which extraordinary public policy research may flourish.
If you are interested in this group, please contact one of the convenors listed below. The Policy Studies Research Group Facebook page is here.
Siobhan O’Sullivan, University of NSW – firstname.lastname@example.org
Tim LeGrand, The University of Adelaide – email@example.com
Paul Fawcett, The University of Melbourne – firstname.lastname@example.org
Jenny Lewis, The University of Melbourne – email@example.com