AAC2022 begins today

2020 Australasian AID Conference ( Alexandra Orme Photography)

After a break in 2021, the Australasian AID Conference (AAC) returns this afternoon. If you can’t be in Canberra to participate in person, you can watch selected sessions via the livestream link.

This evening’s keynote address is from Stefan Dercon (Professor of Economic Policy, Blavatnik School of Government, University of Oxford),  a former DFID chief economist and a policy adviser to the UK foreign secretary. His latest book, Gambling on Development: Why some countries win and others lose draws on his academic research as well as his policy experience across three decades and 40-odd countries, exploring why some countries have managed to settle on elite bargains favouring growth and development, and others have not.

Australian Minister for International Development and the Pacific, the Hon Pat Conroy MP, will deliver the opening address on Tuesday morning. It’s an opportunity to hear the government’s latest thinking on the role of aid and development in Australia’s foreign policy and its priorities as it develops a new international development policy.

A highlight of AAC2022 is the Mitchell Oration. This year we welcome feminist researcher, storyteller, filmmaker, and women and children’s rights advocate, ‘Ofakilevuka Guttenbeil-Likiliki, for the oration, “Enough is enough: audaciously decolonising the development and humanitarian nexus”.

Two teams will battle it out in “The Great Debate”, chaired by ABC News Foreign Affairs reporter Stephen Dziedzic. Will the renewed emphasis on aid and development that is accompanying intensified strategic competition deliver for developing countries in the Indo-Pacific and their communities?

A keynote panel on Wednesday – “The state of Australian aid” – will showcase three pieces of research: Devpol researchers, Huiyuan Liu and Terence Wood, will discuss the findings from the 2022 Aid Transparency Audit and Devpol’s recent work on public opinion about aid; and, Development Intelligence Lab Founder and CEO, Bridi Rice, will present results from a recent project surveying development thinkers in Australia and the region on the key questions facing the new development policy.

The conference will wrap up with, 3MAP – the 3-minute aid pitch – which gives aid practitioners three minutes to present their aid-related great idea, followed by a vote to find the winner.

Across Tuesday and Wednesday, livestreamed panels will include presentations and discussions on regional development and Australia’s interests, governance and Asia’s climate and environmental challenges, opportunities for feminist foreign policy in the Indo-Pacific, current perspectives and future directions for indigenous voices in development, and the new debt crisis.

Check the full conference program, plan the next couple of days and bookmark the livestream link. Presentations from sessions that aren’t being livestreamed will be uploaded to the conference website throughout the conference.

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Development Policy Centre

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