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The Department of Political and Social Change (PSC) is a leader in the training of the next generation of scholars in the field of Asian politics in Australia.

The Department offers world-class graduate research programs, including the nation’s only Master of Political Science program in collaboration with the ANU School of Politics and International Relations (SPIR). We have considerable depth of expertise on the political and social dynamics of the countries of Asia, in particular Indonesia, Thailand, Myanmar, Korea and China, including the highest concentration of academic staff and PhD students specialising in Indonesian politics outside of Indonesia itself. 

If you are interested in pressing issues facing Asian politics and society, democratisation, national and local politics, gender, peace and conflict resolution, religious politics or political theory, our Master of Political Science or Graduate Certificate of Political Science is for you. 

The program is designed for graduates and professionals seeking to launch or advance their careers in government, civil society organisations, foreign affairs, think-tanks, and academia.

Academic programs

Our internationally renowned academic staff will help to develop your understanding of Australia’s Asian neighbours, bringing new perspectives to the analysis of the region.


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Master of Political Science

The Master of Political Science deals with the scientific study of political behaviour and phenomena from voting behaviour to civil war, from regime change to corruption. Our program provides you with the analytical frameworks and research skills needed to understand contemporary political events from the immigration policies of the Trump administration to the leadership conflicts within Australia’s political parties.

The Master of Political Science (Advanced) provides students with the analytical tools they need to answer a range of critical questions about contemporary political affairs ranging from election forecasting to ethnic conflict. The program provides training in political science research methods in addition to courses on the contemporary politics of Australia, Asia, and other major regions of the world.

Graduate Certificate of Political Science

Advance your career in international security with our Graduate Certificate of Political Science. This program (6 months full-time) equips students with the knowledge of contemporary political affairs and the analytical frameworks and research skills needed to understand the modern political landscape.

It will enable you to address a range of critical questions, such as what motivates voters to support populist candidates? How can election outcomes be more accurately forecast? What is the source of ethnic conflicts and how can it be best understood?

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Higher Degree Research

Higher Degree Research (HDR) programs (PhD and MPhil) in PSC consist primarily of independent research on a topic developed in consultation between the candidate and their supervisor, and compulsory coursework in research design and methods.

The outcome of the PhD and MPhil programs is an original thesis incorporating the research conducted during the program and its results. The thesis must make a substantial contribution to learning and relate the research to a broader literature in political science, sociology, anthropology and/or related fields.

Meet our alumni

We are proud to know that our alumni are achieving great things around the world. If you want to tell your own story or suggest an alumnus, we should profile, email