Policy Studies Research Group

Policy Studies in Australia is gaining in prominence – and relevance – in policy debates for its considerable theoretical and disciplinary heterogeneity.

2021 Australasian Public Policy Network Conference

Call for Papers (PDF download)

We are currently inviting paper proposals for the 2021 Australasian Public Policy Network Conference that address any area or subfield of public policy, public administration or governance.

  • When
    • Main Conference: 4 – 5 February 2021
    • Graduate Conference: 3 February 2021
  • Where
    • We are planning to host a hybrid conference in 2021 due to the uncertainties that continue to exist around covid-19. In the event that we cannot run the event on the Parkville campus then we will run the entire conference online.
    • By hybrid, we mean that we will plan for an in-person conference but on the understanding that the most likely outcome is that there will be some people who will be able to make it to the conference and others who will participate via video link.
  • Important Dates
    • Call for Papers closes (main and graduate conference): 30 October 2020
    • Acceptance notification: 13 November 2020
    • Confirmation about the delivery mode for the conference: mid-January 2021

Submitting your Paper Proposal

Paper proposals should include:

  • the title of your paper;
  • an abstract (maximum 400 words);
  • your contact details, including the email address(es) and institutional affiliation(s) of each author;
  • whether you know now that it would be your preference to deliver your paper online via video conference;
  • whether you are submitting to the main conference or the graduate conference

Your paper proposal should be emailed to Dr. Lei Yu: lei.yu@unimelb.edu.au with the subject title: 2021 Australasian Public Policy Network Conference – Paper Submission.

Any other queries can be sent to the conference organisers, A/Prof Paul Fawcett or Professor Jenny Lewis: paul.fawcett@unimelb.edu.au and jmlewis@unimelb.edu.au.

About us:

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

Lead Convenor:
Siobhan O’Sullivan, University of NSW – siobhan.osullivan@unsw.edu.au

Other Convenors:
Tim LeGrand, The University of Adelaide – tim.legrand@adelaide.edu.au 
Paul Fawcett, The University of Melbourne – paul.fawcett@unimelb.edu.au
Jenny Lewis, The University of Melbourne – jmlewis@unimelb.edu.au