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Unit Overview


This unit is designed to expose students to the policy and political decision making by the political class. The business community doesn't always adequately understand the decision making processes in state and federal politics. This unit aims to ensure the business leaders of tomorrow who undertake studies at UWA fully appreciate what factors go into political decision making, as well as the process of policy development which occurs.

Students are exposed to the bureaucratic processes, the machinations within political parties, and the necessary role of the media. While not all political decisions affect business, most business decision making relies on the governance framework of the nation the business operates within. It is important that anyone seeking to do business within a particular country understands these processes.

The business of politics unit includes traditional lectures on content which business students often aren't exposed to but should be. It offers explanations for some of the most significant political decisions which have affected business in recent years.

6 points
(see Timetable)
Non-standard teaching periodUWA (Perth)Face to face

Students are able to (1) explain the political ecosystem in Australia, at both state and federal levels, and the relevance of government policy to business investment attractiveness; (2) demonstrate an appreciation of political governance and policy processes, including the role of the constitution, prime minister and cabinet, state premiers & ministers and the role of media participation; (3) explain how business organisations work with government to shape policy outcomes relevant to key industries through case analyses; and (4) demonstrate the capability for self-directed learning and reflection.


Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) participation; (2) minor essay; and (3) major essay. Further information is available in the unit outline.

Student may be offered supplementary assessment in this unit if they meet the eligibility criteria.

Unit Coordinator(s)
Professor Peter Van Onselen
Unit rules
Enrolment in
42520 Master of Business Administration
or 43520 Master of Business Administration
and Successful completion of
12 points
Successful completion of
MGMT5616 Advanced Topics in Management
Contact hours
Intensive Teaching Period - 5 days at 7.2 hours a day = 36 hours
  • The availability of units in Semester 1, 2, etc. was correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change.
  • All students are responsible for identifying when they need assistance to improve their academic learning, research, English language and numeracy skills; seeking out the services and resources available to help them; and applying what they learn. Students are encouraged to register for free online support through GETSmart; to help themselves to the extensive range of resources on UWA's STUDYSmarter website; and to participate in WRITESmart and (ma+hs)Smart drop-ins and workshops.
  • Unit readings, including any essential textbooks, are listed in the unit outline for each unit, one week prior the commencement of study. The unit outline will be available via the LMS and the UWA Handbook one week prior the commencement of study. Reading lists and essential textbooks are subject to change each semester. Information on essential textbooks will also be made available on the Essential Textbooks. This website is updated regularly in the lead up to semester so content may change. It is recommended that students purchase essential textbooks for convenience due to the frequency with which they will be required during the unit. A limited number of textbooks will be made available from the Library in print and will also be made available online wherever possible. Essential textbooks can be purchased from the commercial vendors to secure the best deal. The Student Guild can provide assistance on where to purchase books if required. Books can be purchased second hand at the Guild Secondhand bookshop (second floor, Guild Village), which is located on campus.
  • Contact hours provide an indication of the type and extent of in-class activities this unit may contain. The total amount of student work (including contact hours, assessment time, and self-study) will approximate 150 hours per 6 credit points.