Course Descriptions 2015-16


  • POLI6601 Governance: Politics, Policies and NetworksThis course provides an understanding of the key concept of governance in politics and public administration, and its applicability to the study of relevant issues in Hong Kong and China. Students will be introduced to different approaches to governance, both normative and empirical, and examine and analyze the ‘good governance’ agenda. Particular attention will be given to the relations between governance and public sector reform, in terms of new public management and the network mode of service delivery. The course will also examine the role of collaborative governance and civil society, and the variety of techniques and organizations which have been involved in engaging the public in service delivery and in policy formulation. (Assessment: 100% coursework)
  • POLI6602 Policy Analysis: Skills and PracticeConventional policy analysis has a strong connotation of rational planning and is anchored in the concept of efficiency. New modes of governance have challenged the adequacy of looking at policy analysis simply as a means to achieving efficiency. Policy analysis within new modes of governance requires appreciation and knowledge of designing institutions to harness the dynamics of collective action in multiple scales and levels, as well as the necessary skills to juggle the concerns of efficiency, transparency, accountability, and democracy. (Assessment: 100% coursework)
  • POLI6603 Workshop in Governance ResearchThis course introduces to students the logic and practice of social research design and methods. Specifically, it examines the logic of inference, issues involved in qualitative and quantitative inquiries, and alternative approaches to research design. The purpose of the course is pragmatic—it strives to equip students with necessary knowledge and skills to design a research project that can lead to a dissertation or research papers. The course will also examine the challenges and constraints that a researcher might face in conducting social research, and the possible ways to meet these challenges. (Assessment: 100% coursework)
  • POLI6604 Collaborative ManagementA governance perspective focuses our attention on the management of the "extended state." The course examines various issues involved in the more complex nature of managing public services straddling the great divides between the state, markets, and civil society. In particular, the course focuses on inter-jurisdictional collaboration, third-party governance, network governance, collective action in multiple scales, and the engagement of civil society in policymaking and governance. (Assessment: 100% coursework)
  • GRSC6029 Research Ethics for Graduate Students• This course covers the international standards associated with the conduct of human-subject research, with a particular focus on survey, ethnographic, archival, and qualitative research. Topics also covered include issues of authorship, mentoring, and professional ethics for academics in the university. This course comprises twelve hours (six 2-hour classes). The class will normally include a brief lecture and an in-class, case-based discussion. (Assessment: 100% coursework)


  • POLI6605 Ethics and Public Affairs• One of the central principles of a liberal society is that citizens irrespective of race, gender, religion, or other irrelevant characteristics should have an equal opportunity to access to rights, goods and services available in a given society. Although well enshrined in anti-discrimination laws in many liberal societies, this intuitively simple principle conceals conceptual difficulties and moral controversies. This course explores these difficult questions by analyzing the concept, principles and hard cases of discrimination, with reference to such policy issues as race, gender, sexual orientation, and age. (Assessment: 100% coursework)
  • POLI6606 Supervised Reading in Specialty of Public AdministrationThe course is tailor-made for each student through one-to-one supervision and designed to familiarize students with particular bodies of literature that are relevant to their specialties and research interests. Through intensive reading and a focus on research methods to support students to critically evaluate the research literature, one important end product of this course is a robust literature review of major theoretical and policy issues on which the students will formulate and conduct their dissertation research. The course will enable students to fine-tune their dissertation writing and rhetoric skills and build up their research methodology skills. (Assessment: 100% coursework)
  • POLI6607 Seminar on Governance and Public Affairs in ChinaThis course is focused principally on governance experience in China, including Hong Kong, which has undergone rapid social, political and economic change in the last few decades. Given the trajectory of government, both Central and HKSAR''s, reaction to these changes, what types of public administration challenges lie ahead and how we can proactively anticipate appropriate responses. Senior practitioners from government, policy advocates and political actors will be invited to discuss their experiences. (Assessment: 100% coursework)
  • POLI6608 Seminar on Governance and Public Affairs in East AsiaThe course provides an opportunity for students to learn the latest developments in public governance and policy in East Asia, and will be organized in a workshop format emphasizing intensive learning and active participation of students. Distinguished scholars from various East Asian countries will be invited to contribute to the teaching of the course. The topics to be covered may vary each year, but they will cover governance issues, such as hybrid public-private partnerships, transnational linkages, civic engagement, and network governance. (Assessment: 100% coursework)