Implementation Science for Strategic Policy Development

Crawford School of Public Policy

How long?

  • 6 days
  • online

What are the topics?

Crawford School of Public Policy


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Who should attend

This course is aimed at current and aspiring public policy officers/specialists (APS 6-EL1).

About the course

Improve strategic policy design through a greater understanding of implementation science.

Designing and implementing strategic policy is challenging. Government approaches often change direction, public policy development is highly contestable, policy problems are complex and multi-faceted, requiring linkages across numerous portfolios or layers of governance, and there is a growing emphasis on involving stakeholders and citizens in public policy design.

Contemporary public policy makers need to be well informed, responsive, collaborative and innovative to deliver effective, evidence-based policy. This requires a strategic approach to policy design, development and implementation.

This course will step through a framework for strategic policy development, with a specific focus on the latest research and information on implementation science, using engaging practical activities exploring real-world policy problems, to translate knowledge into understanding and action.

This one-day program is part of a Strategic Policy Fundamentals series, designed to equip current and aspiring public policy makers with a range of tools essential for strategic policy design, development and implementation.

Course overview

Implementation Science for Strategic Policy Development – part of the Strategic Policy Development Fundamentals series, will provide participants with a framework to develop their strategic policy skills. Participants will work through the implementation aspects of the strategic policy development framework in detail, engaging in techniques that will help to build a practical approach to strategic policy co-design and implementation.

The course will include both theoretical components, case studies and practical activities to facilitate learning, considering the latest information and evidence relevant to each topic. Participants will be required to work in small groups on a real-world policy problem. Activities undertaken are likely to include application of policy co-design techniques, development of a Theory of Change approach and a high-level implementation plan. Participants will also engage in role playing to understand behaviour change and games to explore systems thinking and mental models.

Participants will be provided with a workbook that will contain some of the theoretical elements discussed and materials to support the practical exercises.

Topics to be covered:

  • Introduction to the Strategic Policy Framework, including a brief overview of systems thinking and behavioural insights
  • Implementation science – designing evidence-based policy; communicating with influence; Theory of Change and creating evaluation frameworks; engaging end-users in policy design; flexible policy implementation; benefits and pitfalls of pilot projects and scaling up; measuring success and intervention impact

Learning outcomes:

Public policy development in Australia exists in a highly complex and contested environment. In order for the public sector to be a leader in policy design and development, there needs to be greater understanding of the interdependent structures of public policy systems, of how human behaviour can influence and drive policy change and why we need a greater focus on the nuances of policy implementation.

This course will provide participants with tools to improve their strategic policy thinking, linking and analysis capabilities, to support policy development and delivery in a holistic, collaborative, innovative and focused way. Developing these skills across organisations in the public sector, or through MPA students, will facilitate and enable the delivery of a strategic public policy work agenda.

  • Understanding the need to take a big picture approach to policy design in order to avoid assumptions and unintended consequences and to be disciplined in defining policy problems before jumping to solution design
  • Experience using co-design and consumer engagement techniques for policy development, Theory of Change and high-level evaluation frameworks and implementation approaches that can be applied in the work place Anticipated behavioural and business impacts include:

Participants will:

  • Gain a deeper understanding of the fundamental capabilities required for strategic policy development and the ability to employ practical strategies for developing these capabilities in the work place
  • Experience using some of the tools designed to strengthen strategic policy development, particularly the application of systems thinking, behavioural insights and implementation science
  • Participate in policy design, development and implementation in a more informed, deliberative, joined-up, innovative and cohesive manner


Erin Bowen

Erin Bowen is an experienced senior policy specialist in health and public administration, with almost twenty years working at executive levels across both Commonwealth and state governments and now works as a public policy consultant. She has provided leadership on whole of system strategic poli...

Implementation Science for Strategic Policy Development at Crawford School of Public Policy

From  AUD 1 495$1,122

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Coursalytics is an independent platform to find, compare, and book executive courses. Coursalytics is not endorsed by, sponsored by, or otherwise affiliated with any business school or university.

Full disclaimer.

Read more about Government

Government courses primarily focus on real cases coupled with scholarly analysis, that define the effectiveness of a public organization's performance. Government training courses are of primary significance to those who are involved in public sector...

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