Best of the Blog 2020

Best of the blog 2020
The 2020 Australasian AID Conference…before social distancing

2020 has been a year of lockdown and closed borders. We couldn’t travel so we wrote, publishing 364 blogs. Thank you to our authors and readers for supporting us throughout our tenth year of blogging.

In case you missed a few, or want to revisit your favourites, here are some of our most popular blogs for the year. Of course, COVID-19 dominated, but it wasn’t the only topic. Scroll down towards the end for summer reading suggestions.

This is our last blog for 2020. Have a relaxing holiday and see you in the new year. We start again on Monday 11 January 2021.

International development

COVID-19, localisation and locally led development: a critical juncture by Chris Roche and Fiona Tarpey

International (development) cooperation in a post-COVID-19 world: a new way of interaction or super-accelerator? by Artemy Izmestiev and Stephan Klingebiel

Time to end the hustle culture in international development by Kate Wilson

The problem with Doing Development Differently by Terence Wood

COVID-19: three ways to support women, girls and vulnerable groups in humanitarian settings by Leisa Gibson and Leda Tyrell

Australian aid

Australian aid in five years’ time by Graham Teskey

Defence and aid: unprecedented divergence by Stephen Howes

COVID-19, and Australian and New Zealand aid to the Pacific by Terence Wood

The aid budget and COVID-19 strategy by Stephen Howes

Oxfam Australia’s woes: a sign of the times? by Stephen Howes and Sherman Surandiran


Pivoting to respond to COVID-19: early thoughts from the Philippines by Nicola Nixon, Sam Chittick and Jaime Faustino

Vietnam: a COVID-19 success story by Tran Chung Chau, Michael D. Gregorio and Nicola Nixon

Peace and the pandemic: the impact of COVID-19 on conflict in Asia by Adam Burke

Stop widening gender inequalities: Asia’s COVID-19 responses must leave no one behind by Chamaiporn Siangyen

Vietnam’s low-cost COVID-19 battle shows the world what can be done by Misha Coleman and Margaret Sheehan

South Korea’s COVID-19 response: hard lessons on saving lives by Kwang Kim, Kyung-sook Lee and Jaemyung Lee

Taiwan’s experience with COVID-19, and aid to the Pacific by Yun-Ching Tseng, Yan-Tzong Cheng and Chun-Hsuan Sung

Gender equality in China’s labour market: some worrying signs by Jeni Klugman, Limin Wang and Meiyan Wang


How PNG lost US$120 million and the future of deep-sea mining by Colin Filer, Jennifer Gabriel and Matthew G. Allen

Against amending the Constitution to make PNG a Christian country by Robin Oge

What it takes to change a prime minister in PNG by Michael Kabuni

Not all men are violent – but PNG is not safe for women by Geejay P. Milli

Climate change: a sign of the ‘End Times’ by Lorelle Tekopiri Yakam and Kylie McKenna

PNG’s job crisis and COVID-19 by Stephen Howes and Jotam Sinopane

PNG budget: pluses and minuses by Maholopa Laveil and Dek Joe Sum

Debt financing without development in PNG by Joe Taia Kapa

Pacific and Timor-Leste

Fiji’s economic freefall, and the government’s response by Neelesh Gounder

COVID-19 and Solomon Islands: the first casualties and possible ramifications by Transform Aqorau

Bigger than aid: Vanuatu’s citizenship schemes by Sherman Surandiran and Stephen Howes

Adventures in the East Timorese bureaucracy by Joao Almeida and Gordon Peake

Young in rural Timor-Leste: poor, hungry and bored by Akito Ximenes and Michael Rose

COVID-19: economic damage and Pacific strengths by Stephen Howes and Sherman Surandiran

Tonga’s double whammy: COVID-19 and tropical cyclones by Ofakilevuka (‘Ofa) Guttenbeil-Likiliki

How is Tuvalu securing against COVID-19? by Carol Farbotko and Taukiei Kitara

Do Papuan lives matter? by Arichika Okazaki and Grant Walton

Time for a Pacific Community by Biman Chand Prasad

Pacific labour mobility

For Tonga, Australian labour mobility more important than aid and trade combined by Stephen Howes and Beth Orton

The Pacific remittances boom: it’s for real by Stephen Howes and Sherman Surandiran

Licensed agents: the key to Vanuatu’s SWP success by Joanne Wade

Throwing it all away? Vanuatu’s abolition of licensed SWP and RSE agents by Richard Curtain and Stephen Howes

Pacific Islander communities and employment in Australia by Beth Orton and Ryan Edwards

The PLS: beefing up Australia’s meet industry by Holly Lawton

COVID-19: RSE and SWP by Rochelle Bailey and Charlotte Bedford

Aid to the Pacific

Australian aid to PNG – Part 1 and Part 2 by John Ma’o Kali CMG OBE

Aid to the Pacific is the least value for money by Carolyn Hunt

Australia leaves Fiji to flounder by Stephen Howes

What ails Australian aid to the Pacific? Two Pacific expert views by Sadhana Sen

Comparing China’s and Taiwan’s aid to the Pacific by Denghua Zhang

Summer reading suggestions: 2020 book reviews and more

Aid’s implementariat: national and invisible by Gordon Peake

Behrouz Boochani’s No Friend but the Mountains: an Oceanian lens by Michelle Nayahamui Rooney

Fishing for success: lessons in Pacific regionalism by Bob Warner

PNG on the border: too close to ignore, but what to do? by Stephen Howes

The Watermill: compelling stories of injustice by Gordon Peake

Providing by leaving: a gripping tale by Michael Rose

Personal stories

Growing up in Papua New Guinea: a six-part series by UPNG undergraduates.

Poverty in China: a personal encounter – part one and two by Huiyuan Liu

COVID-19 stories from PNGFiji and China

Farewell. We sadly said goodbye in 2020 to some very fine people

Obituary for Simon Tosali by Paul Flanagan

Vale Dr James Scambary by Gordon Peake

Vale Nahau Rooney by Sadhana Sen and Gynnie Kero

Arichika Okazaki

Arichika Okazaki is a Senior Program Officer at the Development Policy Centre.

Stephen Howes

Stephen Howes is Director of the Development Policy Centre and Professor of Economics at the Crawford School of Public Policy at The Australian National University.

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