The theory of public administration: the world comes to learn

Public servants from the Asia-Pacific have joined Australian counterparts to think more deeply about public policy and government management at an annual ANZSOG course. The Mandarin went to meet them.

“We all have experience of practical leadership in our day-to day-work,”  says Agnes Lo, an assistant commissioner of the Census and Statistics Department of the Hong Kong SAR government, “it’s just that we don’t have the time to sit back and look at it from a theoretical perspective …

“This course has given us the opportunity to do that.”

The Mandarin was invited along to chat to some of the international attendees of the Australia and New Zealand School of Government’s annual three-week Executive Fellows Program on their second-last day. The program is aimed at public servants at deputy secretary, first assistant secretary or equivalent level and is run by program director Robin Ryde. It features a range of lecturers, including from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government.

This year’s cohort has seen the highest number of international attendees so far, coming from countries around the Asia-Pacific region. They join senior bureaucrats from all jurisdictions in Australia and New Zealand. The response has been universally positive.

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