« Asia and the Pacific/Gender and Social Development

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This micro-credential will consider the challenges and opportunities to extend conceptualisations of ‘legitimate leadership’ in the Pacific. Across most sectors, women are significantly under-represented in positions of formal leadership in the Pacific, including in politics, the public service, and business. Research points to a range of socio-economic and structural barriers to women’s leadership, including limited access to financial resources and education, and pervasive underlying social norms that place value in men and masculine forms of leadership. The micro-credential will examine a range of policy and programmatic interventions that have been designed over the last decade to improve women’s leadership in the Pacific.


  1. What is legitimate leadership in Pacific context: gendered norms, practices and exclusions
  2. Pathways and motivations for women’s leadership: resistance, power and backlash
  3. Collective and individual leadership: identifying legitimate leadership strategies
  4. Intersectionality and leadership
  5. Trauma informed leadership
  6. Development programs to support women’s increased leadership in the Pacific

Learning outcomes 

Upon successful completion, enrollees will have the knowledge and skills to: 

  1. Demonstrate an understanding of existing challenges to women’s leadership in the Pacific
  2. Identify and critically analyse different approaches and pathways to leadership
  3. Demonstrate familiarity with the academic and policy debates around gender equality and leadership in the Pacific context and more broadly
  4. Critically analyse strategies that aim to support women’s increased, legitimate leadership

Indicative assessment

Policy Brief: 40%; Links to LO: 1, 3 and 4

Leadership Pitch: 10%: Links to LO: 1, 2 and 3

Response to Policy Interventions: 40%; Links to LO: 1, 2, 3 and 4

Participation in class discussion: 10%; Links to LO: 1, 2, 3 and 4

Assumed knowledge 

This Micro-credential is taught at graduate level and assumes the generic skills of a Bachelors or equivalent. 

Micro-credential stack information 

 This Micro-credential is currently not part of a stack.


  • Course Code: DPA17

  • Workload: Contact hours: 12 hours, face-to-face or online (eg via Zoom). Individual study and assessment: approx. 50-60 hours.

  • ANU unit value: 3 units

  • Course Code Level: 8000

  • Contact:  ANU Department of Pacific Affairs: dpa@anu.edu.au

This Micro-credential is taught at a graduate level.  This is not an AQF qualification. 

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