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Organising and managing in local government

Change is constant in local government. Get to the heart of local government bureaucracy with executive education.

About this course

Local governments are community-focused public sector organisations with a diverse workforce and one overriding purpose: appropriate, effective and efficient delivery of local public services. Simultaneously, these organisations function in a political environment that needs to take account of the concerns of citizens. 

Course structure 

This five-day professional development course explores contemporary trends of public sector administration and is designed to strengthen the knowledge and managerial practice of local government professionals. The program blends theory and principles with case studies, discussion forums and workshop sessions.

The sessions will provide foundational theory plus a range of perspectives on the practice and challenges of managing in local government. This course provides local public administrators with knowledge, skills and values that can help them to practice in a way that integrates local public service and democratic values with public management.

Topics covered include:

  • The language of public administration
  • Perspectives on public administration through the decades
  • Democracy and Management
  • Forms of accountability in public administration
  • Local government capacity and capacity-building.


Learning outcomes

At the end of the course you will have:

  • Examined the nature and mission of public organisations, managerial practice and models of leadership
  • Outlined how public sector efficiency and effectiveness has been applied and how this has influenced practices of accountability and equity
  • Described the tensions in the administrative/political relationship and the impact of this on managing the political and organisational context of local government.
  • Integrated democratic values and citizenship into public organisations and how leaders take account of the public interest.
  • Identified and assessed how the local government sector in Australia is embracing democratic practice and applying participatory governance approaches.


COVID-19 Information

UTS is undertaking a number of social distancing initiatives, as informed by NSW Health advice, to help reduce social interactions in support of the government’s efforts to slow the spread of COVID-19. As part of this response, some of our short courses may be postponed to a later date.

Please note however, bookings are open for all courses offered by the Institute for Public Policy and Governance (IPPG). If a course needs to be postponed, participants will have the chance to transfer to a later date, a new course or request a full refund. IPPG will also be offering a range of online or blended learning options facilitated via zoom video conferencing. If you have any questions in the interim, please do not hesitate to contact our team at

Who is this course for?

Public sector professionals, particularly those working with or in local government.



29 July




5 days

Meet the Expert

Dr Professor Bligh Grant

Dr Professor Bligh Grant
Associate Professor, IPPG

Dr Professor Bligh Grant is Associate Professor at the UTS Institute for Public Policy and Governance and UTS Centre for Local Government. He is Course Coordinator of the Master of Local Government program at UTS. He is co-author of three books, Local Government in Australia: History, Theory and Public Policy (2017; with Joseph Drew) and Funding the Future (2013) and Councils in Cooperation (2012) (both with Brian Dollery and Michael Kortt). He is co-editor of Metropolitan Governance in Asia and the Pacific Rim (2018) with Cathy Yang Liu and Lin Ye. Recent co-authored scholarly articles have appeared in Australian Journal of Political Science, Australian Journal of Public Administration, Policy and Politics, Publius: The Journal of Federalism, Local Government Studies and Australian Planner. He contributes regularly to media on Australian politics, particularly on local government matters.

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Book a session

Wed 29 Jul 2020 -
Fri 28 Aug 2020
Expert: Dr Professor Bligh Grant
  • 29-31 July and 27-28 August 2020, 9am-5pm | UTS City Campus
  • On-campus
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