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WA’s Shaun Whitmarsh tops ANZSOG’s Executive Master of Public Administration

19 December 2017

News and media


Shaun Whitmarsh, executive director of strategy and coordination at the WA Department of Finance, was recently named valedictorian of ANZSOG’s Executive Master of Public Administration (EMPA) .

ANZSOG’s 2016 EMPA cohort celebrated the completion of the degree course at a presentation ceremony in Wellington, New Zealand.

The cohort of public servants from across Australia and New Zealand, have been exposed to new tools and approaches to solving the complex problems, and have been challenged to explore new ways of thinking about their roles.

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Mr Whitmarsh described the program as challenging and demanding, but also extremely rewarding.

“The EMPA has taught me to apply a much deeper description and understanding of the problem or problems, with a wider range of policy solutions in my ‘toolkit’ and a better ability to match them together,” he said.

“I feel more confident breaking down problems, framing up arguments and analysing evidence, and just better equipped all-round to think about what the role of government should be.”

Like many EMPA graduates, Mr Whitmarsh also cited the network gained from the EMPA as a new resource he would use throughout his career.

The EMPA’s group-based approach means graduates have built relationships with peers from across Australia and New Zealand and can share insights from across jurisdictions.

The Wellington gathering celebrated the cohort’s achievement and presented awards to participants who achieved the highest academic grade in each of the EMPA’s core subjects.

Award Winners were: Geraldine Goswell (Victoria’s Department of Education and Training), Paula Adams (Victoria’s Department of Justice), Matt Clarke (Commonwealth Department of Human Services), Lisa Hind (Commonwealth Department of Industry and Science), Andrew MacGregor (Victorian Department of Health and Human Services), Megan McCoy (New Zealand Ministry of Social Development), Heather Moore (NSW Department of Justice), Scott Bloodworth (Commonwealth Department of Social Services), and Beth Delaney (Commonwealth Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade).

Mr Whitmarsh, who addressed the function, said he would recommend the EMPA program to other public servants wanting to take the next step in their careers.

“For those willing to put in the time, and make the sacrifices required, I think there is so much to be gained from this program. I genuinely think that the time I have invested will continue to pay dividends for years to come,” he said.