2 Responses

  1. Grant Walton
    Grant Walton July 17, 2015 at 1:30 pm

    Thanks for the response Ash and sorry about the tardy reply.

    You’re right, the findings suggest that donors are in a tricky position when it comes to supporting anti-corruption efforts in PNG. But I think they can still play an important role.

    What should they be doing? I think there is a role for institutional strengthening in PNG, but I suspect it would achieve more by focusing resources at the sub-national level. With a move to District Development Authorities more power is going to reside at the districts in PNG; anti-corruption responses need to follow this devolution. At the moment we know very little about the most basic aspects of district-level finances, as a recent Auditor General’s report shows [pdf].

    This is where donors could do more; at the moment much of the institutional strengthening is at the national-level.
    I also think there is a role for donors to strategically put diplomatic pressure on PNG, particularly when anti-corruption agencies are attacked. Australia could do that more easily if it shut Manus.

    In addition, there’s a need to respond to the broader socio-economic conditions in which corruption occurs. It’s a bit much to expect people in PNG to become fervent anti-corruption warriors – although a surprising number still are – in the midst of a weak state and poor economic opportunities. These are issues that are difficult to address, but an essential part of the mix none-the-less.

  2. Ashlee Betteridge
    Ashlee Betteridge June 30, 2015 at 4:59 pm

    Thanks Grant and Caryn, this is a really interesting paper. I wonder, based on this, what your thoughts are on where aid donors/the development industry should be investing when it comes to anti-corruption work? If the return on an investment in corruption education is going to be affected by the perceived level of institutional response/effectiveness, then it would seem to suggest that more attention on institution strengthening is the way to go. But surely, and particularly in the PNG case, that would be a politically difficult path to take for donors (…which is perhaps why they are more willing to invest in education). Seems like a really tricky situation in which to be effective?

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