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LAW7307 - Contemporary issues in administrative law

6 points, SCA Band 3, 0.125 EFTSL

Postgraduate Faculty of Law


Not offered in 2007


This unit will examine contemporary administrative law issues in the context of government regulation. The unit will first address emerging major themes in administrative law theory. These include the function of courts, consistently with 'the rule of law', in undertaking heightened scrutiny of the Executive while in some cases according judicial deference to expert tribunals exercising merits review. This survey will be in conjunction with an analysis of major contemporary developments concerning the grounds of review, including judicial initiatives to reappraise the principles of natural justice and the role of legitimate expectations.


The substantive objectives of the unit are to: analyze emerging major themes in administrative law theory; track major developments concerning grounds of judicial review. Identify constraints on judicial review; Eexamine critically selected current developments and proposals for consolidating, reforming and enhancing tribunal and judicial review at Commonwealth and State levels; evaluate the effectiveness of current review mechanisms in terms of securing public accountability and ensuring open scrutiny of governmental decision-making. Its practical objectives are to: familiarize practitioner students with emerging arguments and background to developments in litigation; provide students with an appreciation of the contemporary public law context in which governmental decisions are made; provide alternatives to resolving administrative disputes with government; acquaint students with law reform proposals for developing institutional changes to review of administrative decisions; understand the array of means to obtain government information.


Research paper (6,000 words): 80%, Short paper presentation: 20% [15% written work (1,000 words); 5% oral) Each student will be expected to prepare a case-note or class discussion briefing note of 1000 words for delivery during the course. A total of 20% will be awarded including 5% for oral presentation. Students will submit a final paper of 6,000 words worth 80% on a topic agreed between student and lecturer or on a problem devised by the lecturer.