Master of Public Policy and Governance

PROGRAMME OVERVIEW

Leading the Way Forward

The Master of Public Policy and Governance [MPPG] Programme is designed to help the students to meet with the current worldwide challenges by exploring Asia’s policy problems, their solutions and the mechanisms for effective governance. Delivered by a team of distinguished specialists, the Programme provides in-service professionals, policy practitioners and future public leaders with skills in policy analysis and evaluation, organization analysis and management, strategic communications, project analysis, public governance, and public sector management and development. MPPG brings leading-edge learning of management issues including human resources, financial management and leadership while fostering students’ capabilities and skills for a bright career. It further enhances the students’ employability owing to the knowledge of general management.

A Vibrant Academic Environment: Learning by Doing; Learning by Reaching Out - Comparative Education Field Visit

We don’t just teach; we also do. In addition to conventional classroom teaching, students are exposed to a number of out-of-classroom activities. Through dialogues with senior media practitioners, policy makers, NGOs and government leaders, case study workshops, field visits, election observation tours, simulation and role play, and conference participation, we help students prepare for the task ahead in applying their knowledge in real-world settings.

Love is all Around - Impeccable Pastoral Care

We organize orientation programme for the freshmen so that they can adapt to the University and the Programme while also develop their social network. Through working with the students, academic staff develop an intimate and personal relationship that helps to transform students into confident and independent individuals, ready to take on the world with steely will.

Great and Bright Future - Impressive Statistics on Job Acquisition and Further Studies

Our graduates’ employment prospects have been consistently promising. The Programme desires to ensure that you gain more than just an academic experience from your time here. The Programme intends to encourage your professional and personal objectives, equipping you with the skills essential to be extremely effective in a competitive job market, and provides you with the transferable skills and knowledge appreciated by majority of employers. Our alumni work in a wide spectrum of industries including: the government, NGOs, media, the financial sector and the higher education sector in Hong Kong and Mainland China. Our graduates find their unique competitiveness in research and education institutions, think tanks, NGOs, media, consulting companies, as well as private organizations, helping advise on business strategy, navigating emerging social, political and economic trends, and analyzing the institutional environments that govern and regulate the region.

CURRICULUM*

1-Year Full-time Study Mode

Year

Semester

Taught Courses / Credit Point (cps)

1

1

Core Course

Cross-semester

Core Course

(3 cps)

6

Elective Courses*

6

2

Core Courses

3

Elective Courses*

6

Total Credit Point:

24

2-Year Part-time Study Mode

Year

Semester

Taught Courses / Credit Point (cps)

1

1 & 2

Core Course

Cross-semester

Core Course

(3 cps)

9

2

1 & 2

Elective Courses*

12

Total Credit Point:

24

* Students may choose any of the three combinations of four elective courses from:

  • Specialization I in Governance and Public Management;
  • Specialization II in Social Policy; or
  • Any four courses from Specialization I and II without MPPG Specialization.

 

Click here for the Programme Handbook

2017 Intake

2018 Intake

 

Click here for the Student Handbook

 

* Programme Curriculum: Any aspect of the course (including, without limitation, the content of the Course and the manner in which the Course is taught) may be subject to change at any time at the sole discretion of the University. Without limiting the right of the University to amend the course, it is envisaged that changes may be required due to factors such as staffing, enrolment levels, logistical arrangements and curriculum changes.

COURSE SYNOPSIS*

This course will review the literature, tools, and strategies that inform quantitative and qualitative methods of research in public policy. The focus of the course will be on generating and using evidence in public policy.
Lectures will cover the following topics:
1. Understanding policy research
• Four levels of policy research
• Basic component of a study: research question, research hypothesis, independent variable, dependent variable, population, sample, and sampling method
• Characteristics of a good sample: Representativeness, sufficient sample size, and acceptable response rate
2. Population, sample, and sampling error
• Population, sample, parameter, and statistics
• Sampling error and its measurement
• Relationship between sample size and sampling error
• Relationship of sampling error with population size, estimated parameter and confidence level
• Justification of sample size in proposal
3. Sampling method
• Random sampling vs non-random sampling
• Simple random sampling, systematic random sampling, multi-stage cluster random sampling, stratified random sampling
• Convenience sampling, snowball sampling and quota sampling
4. Questionnaire design and method data collection
• Design a good questionnaire
• Face-to-face interview, phone interview, and self-administration questionnaire or mail survey
5. Quantitative data analysis with SPSS
• Introduction to SPSS
• Descriptive statistics: Frequency distribution, mean, mode, median, range, standard deviation, and standard error
• Level of measurement:
• Bivariate data analysis: Chi-square test, t-test, and correlation
• Multivariate data analysis: Regression
6. Qualitative method
• In-depth interview, focus group and observation
• Sampling
• Design (single case or multiple cases)
• Qualitative data analysis: Coding, interpreting, analysing, triangulation, verification, rigour, theory building and use of NVIVO
7. Policy evaluation design
• Introduction to policy evaluation design
• Single group post-test design
• Single group pre- and post-test design
• Internal validity of the design
• Experimental and control group pre- and post-test design
• Randomized clinical trial
8. Data analysis in policy evaluation
• Data analysis for single group post-test design
• Data analysis for single group pre- and post-test design
• Data analysis for randomized clinical trial: Attrition analysis, evaluation of randomized group assignment, main analysis
9. Proposal and report writing
• Introduction: Literature review, strategies for justifying the study, objectives and hypotheses
• Method: Design, sampling and sample size, data collection, questionnaire, and statistical analysis
• Ethnical approval and budget in proposal
• Result and discussion in report
This course will last for the whole academic year. The course will start with 13 lectures in the first semester. The students with similar research interests will also form into groups of three to four by the end of the first semester. Under the same broad topic, each student in the group will identify a different research question in the second semester. A faculty member will be assigned to guide their projects. Students will have an oral presentation on the proposal and their findings of the broad topic as a group in Week 13 of the second semester. At the end, students will submit the individual report. Similarity on the write-up among students should be minimal since each student has a different research question.
The research group project is intended to provide students the opportunity to integrate analytical skills and specialized knowledge gained in the MPPG programme and to apply them to analysing and addressing real-world policy problems. Conducting the project will consist of describing the scope and magnitude of the chosen problem, analysing its causes, proposing solutions, and assessing the implications of the proposed solutions.
The topics students choose are expected to be in an area with which students have some practical or academic familiarity. Students will also have the option of joining field trip organized by the Department of Asian and Policy Studies with the purpose of studying a public problem. The field visits are typically to other parts of the Greater China region and Southeast Asia.
This course serves as a foundation for master students in Public Policy and Governance (MPPG) to get equipped with theoretic and analytical abilities essential for understanding the complex world of public policy and governance. Public policy and governance studies are multidisciplinary in nature. This course will draw from major theories and techniques in political science, public administration, sociology, and economics and synthesize into a coherent set of knowledge that students without undergraduate background in related fields can comprehend. Related to this, a salient feature of this course is the extensive use of cases, particularly from Asia. The first half of this course is a systematic survey on concepts, theories and analytic techniques in public policy and governance. In the second half of the course, the focus will be pinned on Asia, especially the Greater China region where most students live and work. This part of the course will lead students to understand and analyze policy and governance issues in the region with theories and methods that will have learned in the first half of the course. Students will experience a variety of pedagogies in this course, including lecture, seminar, movie-screening and discussion, and field visit.
The course introduces the concepts and principles that underpin strategic communication in organizations by focusing in three main areas – understanding human communication, understanding contemporary communication environments and new media, and critical analysis of the applicability and concept of strategic communication.
This course aims to ensure that students are familiar with the nature of organisations, their structures, processes and working environments, and particularly the specific characteristics of public and private organisations particularly in the Asian context. It enables students to understand some of the key concepts and theories in organisational behavior; and analyze the implications of organisational behavior for public and private sector management. This course lays the foundation for the understanding of human behaviour in organisations, providing students with a comprehensive exposure to organisational behaviour theories, research and workplace issues illustrated with case studies and examples primarily within an Asian context.
This course investigates the fiscal role of government in the modern context. It engages students in the analysis and critique of the fundamental issues of public finance and budgeting. Drawing on the cases of Mainland China, Hong Kong, other countries such as the USA, the course covers the topics ranging from fundamental principles of public finance, the role of government, budget process and procedures, revenue generation, intergovernmental fiscal relations to education finance and income distribution. Upon completion of this course, students will be able to compare and critically understand public finance and budgeting in various contexts.
This course examines public administration and management in selected Asian countries, utilizing case discussions and critical readings. Students will be exposed to three thematic areas: (1) understanding the nature of change in public administration and management in Asia; (2) analysing opportunities for, and constraints on, the use of reforms that dominate contemporary debates in the public sector; and (3) assessing the outcomes, policy benefits and costs associated with the changing nature of public administration and management among various sectors across Asia.
This course is designed to provide students with an understanding of project appraisal and impact analysis. The core areas include project planning, cost-benefit analysis, cost-effectiveness analysis, multi-criteria analysis, experiments and quasi-experiments, regression framework, impact assessment approaches such as EIA and SIA, etc. Examples of applications, especially in the Asian context, will be drawn during the lectures. This course will enable students to understand the social, economic and environmental issues related to resource allocation of public programmes and projects. They will learn tools to help assessing and improving public-sector projects in terms of their purposes, design, implementation and efficiency.
This course aims to critically engage students with contemporary issues and developments in human resource management (HRM). Adopting a diverse multi-disciplinary, cross-cultural and comparative approach the course will require students to discover, analyse and contribute to providing creative solutions for specific HRM issues and enable applicants to examine the key concepts, core issues, principles and processes in HRM; discover the principles and theories of HRM particularly in the public sector; apply the concepts and theories to analyze HRM issues and the challenges facing the public sector today. The course expects to discuss the HRM practices in a number of Asian countries to demonstrate an understanding on how the public sector reforms have impacted the principles and processes of HR issues.
This course aims to recognize significant recent trends and developments in theories and practices in international public management. It further examines the processes and the impact of globalization, internationalization, diffusion and transfers on public sector management and public sector reform. It enables applicants to analyse key aspects of public management through comparisons of key management reforms within the Asia-Pacific region and beyond.
This course aims to enable students to understand regulation and regulatory governance used in various parts of the world, with an emphasis on real-world examples from Asia and China.
Part A of the course introduces students to the fundamental and practical aspects of regulation: development, enforcement, monitoring, and revision. It uses real-world examples to illustrate the following multi-step approach:
• Identify the need for regulation (e.g., the electricity sector as a natural monopoly).
• Set the public policy goals (e.g., safe, reliable, clean and affordable service).
• Design regulation to achieve those goals, given the behaviour of the directly regulated entity and other stakeholders (e.g., electricity consumers and producers, manufacturers of energy-efficient appliances, and real estate developers of green buildings).
• Monitor regulatory performance (e.g., has the regulation resulted in safe, reliable service at an affordable cost? and has it reduced electricity generation’s emissions?).
• Revise the regulation to improve its performance (e.g., should there be tighter emissions control on electricity production?).
To ensure students’ firm understanding, Part A requires students to form teams, each performing a case study of a sector/industry in Asia that impacts one’s daily life (e.g., airline, auto manufacturing, banking, construction, drug manufacturing, education, energy, finance, food supply, health care, gaming/gambling, internet commerce, news media, non-government organizations, public housing, shipping, taxi, telecommunication, television broadcasting, and trucking). Each team may have up to three members, although a student may choose to work as a one-person team.
Part B focuses on regulatory governance. Regulation can fail sans good regulatory governance that encompasses the systems, processes, and tools designed and implemented to ensure regulatory quality. To see this point, consider the case of food safety (e.g., baby milk formula). A safe and reliable supply of baby milk formula cannot occur without addressing such issues in regulatory governance as:
• Clarity of the regulatory mandate (e.g., safe and adequate supply);
• Key driver for a regulator agency’s establishment (e.g., public interest vs. industry profit);
• Choice of a regulatory agency’s leader (e.g., an independent health expert vs. a researcher from the industry);
• Accountability and transparency (e.g., limited vs. strong oversight by an independent third party);
• Incentive for compliance (e.g., bad publicity, loss of business licences, fine, and imprisonment);
• Independence and competence (e.g., biased and inapt vs. fair and competent);
• Scope and responsibility (e.g., narrow vs. broad); and
• Funding and authority (e.g., poorly funded and weak vs. adequately funded and strong).
To ensure students’ firm understanding, Part B requires each team to perform a follow-up study of regulatory governance for the case chosen in Part A. This study should focus on the systems, processes, and tools for effecting regulatory quality, rather than Part A’s study on the development, design and revision of a particular regulation.
This course aims to enable students to understand environmental policies and their governance in various parts of the world, with an emphasis on real-world examples from Asia and China.
Part A of the course introduces students to the fundamental and practical aspects of an environmental policy: development, assessment and revision. It uses real-world examples to illustrate the following multi-step approach:
• Identify the need for the policy (e.g., global warming due to greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions );
• Set the policy target (e.g., 50% below the 2000 level by year 2030);
• Identify the possible policy actions to achieve the target (e.g., promote energy-efficient appliances and buildings, increase fuel-efficient/electric cars, retire coal-fired power plants, and develop renewable, nuclear energy, and clean vehicular fuels).
• Formulate a policy plan that may include regulations (e.g., no old dirty cars on the road by 2020), tax and subsidy (e.g., exemption of registration fee for electric cars), and quota-based programs (e.g., renewable portfolio standards (RPS) to develop wind generation for electric car charging).
• Assess the plan’s merit from various perspectives (e.g., costs and values, political and public acceptance, science and technology, administration and management).
• Revise the policy and its plan after their implementation to address such questions as: (a) should the policy target be tightened? and (b) should its plan be changed?
To ensure students’ firm understanding, Part A requires students to form teams, each performing a case study of an environment policy in Asia that impacts one’s daily life (e.g., air quality, electricity generation, energy consumption, environmental education, food production, land use, mining and resource extraction, marine resources, public transportation, toxic waste, and water quality). Each team may have up to three members, although a student may choose to work as a one-person team.
An environment policy can fail sans good governance. Hence, Part B focuses on environmental governance that entails interventions to change environment-related incentives, institutions, decision making, and behaviour. It includes regulatory processes, mechanisms and organizations through which political actors influence environmental actions and outcomes. To see this point, consider the case of large GHG reductions that cannot occur without addressing such questions in environmental governance as:
• Who are the major consumers of fossil fuels that contribute to GHG emissions and global warming (e.g., cars, electricity generators, and manufacturing plants)?
• What are the other sources of GHG emissions (e.g., coal and wood as cooking/heating fuel, deforestation, farming, land fill, and fossil fuel extraction)?
• Do these consumers believe that global warming is a real risk, rather than a scientific hoax?
• Do they act on their own, without intervention of any kind, to reduce GHG emissions?
• How do they respond to regulatory processes (e.g., GHG emissions standards), incentive mechanisms (e.g., carbon taxes) and organizations (e.g., government agencies and self-regulatory bodies)?
• What are the characteristics of the global warming problem that transcends national borders (e.g., developed vs. developing countries), space (e.g., Asia vs. North America), and time (current vs. future generation)?
• What are the actions that the government, communities, businesses, and NGOs may take to achieve GHG reductions?
• What is the role of decentralization that delegates the responsibility of GHG reductions to local administrative and organizational arrangements, as well as individual decision-making by market participants (e.g., RPS set by individual states in the U.S.)?
• What are the market-based mechanisms that use incentives (e.g., carbon taxes and cap and trade) to induce GHG reductions?
• What are the inter-relationships among international accords, national policies, local decision-making structures, transnational institutions, and environmental groups?
• What is the impact of globalization that interconnects various regions on GHG reductions?
To ensure students’ firm understanding, Part B requires each team to perform a follow-up study of environmental governance for the case chosen in Part A. This study should focus on the systems, processes, and tools to effectively execute an environmental policy, rather than Part A’s study on the development, design and revision of the policy.
Changes in the contemporary structural composition of the global political-economy increasingly impact all facets of state-market relations, not least the reach, power and authority of the state in terms of policy making processes and the means via which public policy is realized. Understanding the forces precipitating this change comprises the principal rationale of this course. The fundamental question the course deals with is the distribution of power in the international system and its consequences for governance and state capacity. Specifically;
• Is there a fundamental change occurring in the power relations between states are markets and between public and private sector actors in the international system?
• What new forms of governance are emerging as a consequence of this process?
• What is the magnitude of this change and what are its implications for public sector capacity and governance?
To help address these questions the course is thematically structured into three parts.
First, the course begins with an outline of the dominant modes of thinking about international political and economic relations and of the relationships between states and markets and their implications for state capacity. The second part of the course turns to address the emergence of international institutions and private sector authority in the international system. Third, and finally, the last part of the course addresses the implications of these developments in terms of the functional – management issues these developments pose for regulators, the regulatory reach of the state, and for regulatory risk. In particular, the course will address the advent of risk associated with un-regulated international markets and private sector actors and how they influence the behaviour of states, market structures and change the risk universe public actors are forced to deal with.
The Internship’s purpose is to offer students the prospect to apply their knowledge in realistic situations via an industry placement for eight-weeks. The professions Internship Programme involves an internship with an organization which will help provide the student with an opportunity to have a hands-on experience either in the area of management or policy. Projects are to be negotiated between the Internship Supervisor and the sponsor within the host organization. The Internship involvement will facilitate the student to network in professional fields they are considering for career paths, grant them an opportunity for professional advancement, and give employers the chance to guide and evaluate talents. It is anticipated that the skills attained from working with an organization will benefit students in facilitating them to enhance their performance on their jobs after graduation. Additionally, the Internship will significantly accelerate the probabilities for students to find full-time employment after graduation. Students must complete the programme to the satisfaction of their host organisation as well as their Internship Supervisor in order to pass this course. Internships will be offered to students for ten-weeks, which includes two weeks of pre-placement workshops and eight weeks of placement, on merit through a competitive application and interview process
In the past two decades, managing social services has undergone drastic changes with the call for greater accountability in the delivery of social services with limited financial budgets as well as higher expectations for service quality. The objective of the course is to enhance students’ knowledge of the social services sector and equip them with the skills to improve the sector’s performance. Emphasis will be on practical and proven methods of management as well as innovative approaches consistent with best professional practices. The course will also cover a critical analysis of current social problems leading to responses of the community in formulation of social policies and organization of social services.
Social protection has been a mounting challenge for many governments in Asia and the world. Population aging and frequent economic crises, along with rising income inequality and poverty, are posing unprecedented threats to governments as well as families. Globalization has a further impact on social, economic and political developments of societies in Asia, which generate substantial policy implications. The course will discuss the root causes of these problems and, more importantly, examine the different approaches to protecting the population from income insecurities. Adopting a comparative approach, this course will enable students to understand the design and implications of the major social protection programmes in the Asian region.
This elective is designed for the Master of Public Policy and Governance (MPPG) students in the specialization of social policy. The aim of this survey course is to equip students with foundation knowledge on health policy, a key field in the social policy arena. The comparative perspective adopted will enable students to go beyond theories and examine health policies internationally with concrete cases. The course starts from a systematic survey on health care, health market, health care financing, provision, and public health, followed by a systematic review of health policies in selected countries and regions. Emerging contemporary health policy issues will also be covered. Students will engage in comparing and contrasting health policy arrangements and issues in Asia and beyond, with the purpose of understanding their policy background, system design, and major challenges. Students will experience a variety of pedagogies in this course, including lecture, seminar, movie-screening and discussion, instructor-guided group project, and field visit. Students will get the opportunity to visit representative public hospitals in both Hong Kong and Mainland China, in order to deepen their understanding on the health systems closest to them.
Societies are aging rapidly and policymakers are scrambling to prepare for it. This course is intended to enhance understanding of the contexts, processes and contents of public policy towards aging in Asia. The course will investigate the aging phenomenon, analyse its impact on governments and societies, assess past and current policy responses to it, and consider options for improvements in policy responses. It will emphasize critical issues such as income maintenance, health care, housing, and long term care for the aged. The goal of the course will be to encourage students to think critically and creatively about the challenges and opportunities of aging society.
This course aims to compare and contrast major social development issues and challenges confronting major societies in Greater China, and examine how state, market and civil society have interacted in response to the critical development issues. The course will be with particular reference to discuss how different economic development strategies adopted by Mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan have affected social development of these societies. Students will be engaged in studying how civil society has emerged and developed in these societies, especially examining how and what major approaches/ measures that the governments have adopted to manage the growing complexity of social problems, the autonomization of society and the changing role of non-governmental organizations (NGOs).
This course teaches social policy concepts and theories. It examines critically major social policy challenges confronting societies in Greater China and Asia. A key feature of this course is social policy issues are addressed through case examples and accompanied by concrete analyses based on policy practices of societies in the region. Adopting a comparative approach in analyzing policy formation and implementation, this course will enable students to understand the most recent developments related to poverty alleviation, health, social security, and housing policies in Mainland China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Singapore. Students will engage in comparing and contrasting major social policy issues with the purpose of understanding their underlying dynamics and devising appropriate responses.
Urban poverty is becoming a widespread phenomenon following decades of economic globalization. The dominance of neo-liberalist economic ideology and the global ‘‘race to the bottom’’ have resulted in an increasing number of people living in polarized urban societies. Reducing poverty and improving socio-economic equality are important societal goals as they are vital to sustainable and inclusive development. In this course, we will introduce to students the conceptual skills and practical tools that allow them to critically examine the issue of poverty and inequality, and to identify solutions to the problems. The course will explore the philosophical underpinning of poverty reduction from the perspective of applied ethics and introduce different definitions of poverty and measurement approaches. The political economy, especially the ideology of neo-liberalism, and various types of welfare regimes will be discussed. The course will also examine various factors that lead to poverty as well as poverty reduction policies adopted by governments.
The Internship’s purpose is to offer students the prospect to apply their knowledge in realistic situations via an industry placement for eight-weeks. The professions Internship Programme involves an internship with an organization which will help provide the student with an opportunity to have a hands-on experience either in the area of management or policy. Projects are to be negotiated between the Internship Supervisor and the sponsor within the host organization. The Internship involvement will facilitate the student to network in professional fields they are considering for career paths, grant them an opportunity for professional advancement, and give employers the chance to guide and evaluate talents. It is anticipated that the skills attained from working with an organization will benefit students in facilitating them to enhance their performance on their jobs after graduation. Additionally, the Internship will significantly accelerate the probabilities for students to find full-time employment after graduation. Students must complete the programme to the satisfaction of their host organisation as well as their Internship Supervisor in order to pass this course. Internships will be offered to students for ten-weeks, which includes two weeks of pre-placement workshops and eight weeks of placement, on merit through a competitive application and interview process.

Click here for Course Outlines

* Course Synopsis: Any aspect of the course (including, without limitation, the content of the Course and the manner in which the Course is taught) may be subject to change at any time at the sole discretion of the University. Without limiting the right of the University to amend the course, it is envisaged that changes may be required due to factors such as staffing, enrolment levels, logistical arrangements and curriculum changes.

ENTRANCE REQUIREMENTS

Applicants applying to the Master of Public Policy and Governance should normally hold a recognized Bachelor's degree. For applicants whose qualification is obtained from an institution in a non-English speaking system should normally fulfil one of the following minimum English proficiency requirements:
  • IELTS 6.0; or
  • a TOEFL score of 550 (paper-based test) or 80 (internet-based test); or
  • Grade C or above in GCSE / GCE OL English; or
  • Band 6 in the Chinese Mainland’s College English Test (CET) (a total score of no lower than 430 if the test was taken after June 2005); or
  • Other equivalent qualifications.

APPLICATION FEE

Hong Kong Residents HK$150*

Non-Hong Kong Residents HK$300*

TUITION FEE

HK$110,760

APPLY ONLINE & ENQUIRIES

Interested applicants please submit your application via EdUHK Online Application Systems. Prior to your submission, please visit www.eduhk.hk/acadprog/ for detailed application and admission information.

Should you have enquiries, please do not hesitate to email us at:

For enquiries of BSocScEd(GCS)
For enquiries of MSocScEd(GCS)
For enquiries of MPPG
For enquiries of the Department
Please complete this form to send enquiries
Name:
Email address:
Message: