Newsletter: Aid policy change | Decentralisation and corruption | PNG Update draft program

Aid policy change: entrepreneurs, ideas and rules

In an essential read for those who engage with the politics around aid, Jo Spratt examines the role of actors, ideas and rules in two significant New Zealand aid policy changes. The three-part blog series is based on her PhD research. In the first post, she explains how entrepreneurial behavior in individuals was essential to achieving change, and in the second, she explores how ideas-based networks shaped and supported these changes. In the final installment, she discusses the importance of advocates knowing the rules.

Decentralisation and the potential for corruption in PNG

How does location affect the response to corruption? What are the implications for policy makers? Drawing on interviews with stakeholders in PNG, Grant Walton and Ainsley Jones argue that context matters when dealing with corruption. They examine decentralisation structures in PNG and find that in places with strong institutions and alignment between social and administrative norms (i.e. East New Britain Province), principal-agent theory is relevant, but in places where these factors are weak (i.e. Gulf Province), collective action problems are more likely. Read the discussion paper here and blog here.

PNG Update draft program + keynotes

The draft program for the 2017 PNG Update is now available. This year’s Update will be bigger than ever, featuring some 63 papers, an increase on 50 last year, and covering a broad variety of topics including PNG economics, social issues and politics. The theme of the Update is ‘PNG: after the elections’, and it will be held on 10 – 11 August 2017, at the University of Papua New Guinea, Waigani Campus, Port Moresby. The event is free, open to all and does not require registration — more details here.

Pacific Update wrap

This year’s Pacific Update, held last week at the University of the South Pacific in Suva, Fiji, was again a highly successful platform for the discussion of key issues affecting the region. Approximately 400 attendees heard engaging discussions on labour mobility, disaster management, and the future of Pacific regionalism. If you weren’t able to attend, you can access the presentations here. Dame Meg Taylor opened the conference, and you can read her opening remarks here.

Devpolicy seeks Program Officer

We currently have a vacancy for a Program Officer, and it’s not too late to submit an application. The role is a crucial part of the centre, coordinating events and administration. We are accepting applications until Friday 14 July. For more details, see the job description.


We are delighted to welcome Mitiana Arbon to the Development Policy Centre. Mitiana is a Samoan-Australian student currently finishing his Honours year in Pacific Studies at ANU, and he will occupy the role of Labour Mobility and Migration Research Officer. If you’d like to contribute content on these topics for the blog or our monthly newsletter focused on labour mobility and migration, contact Mitiana.

Upcoming events

2017 PNG Update
10 –11 August, The University of Papua New Guinea, Waigani Campus, Port Moresby. Draft program now available. Details here.

Australian aid evaluation forum
7 August. Save the date for our next evaluation forum in conjunction with DFAT’s ODE. More details soon. 

New podcasts

My Father, My Country: a film evening with Dame Meg Taylor

Blog highlights

Corruption and culture – crossing the line at the PNG elections?

PNG at the polls: the challenges

Beijing Consensus: looking beyond infrastructure?

On the blog

Participatory budgeting at the local level in Nepal by Thaneshwar Bhusal

Aid policy change: the rules in a dynamic process by Jo Spratt

Labour supply challenges in the horticultural industry by Matthew Dornan

Voices from the war: PNG stories of the Kokoda Campaign by Timothy Pirinduo

Asking the right questions by Bob McMullan

Does the Beijing Consensus have anything to do with foreign aid? By Patrick Kilby

Some challenges for voters in PNG’s 2017 general election by Bal Kama

Helping the Seasonal Worker Program reach its potential in the NT by Development Policy Centre

Aid policy change: ideas-based networks by Jo Spratt

Tobacco trouble: Asia and the Pacific in the spotlight by Ian Anderson

The workforce of the future: Solve-a-thon applications open by Lisa Cornish

Electoral corruption in PNG: caught between the law and a hard place by Sam Koim, Grant Walton

This is the fortnightly newsletter of the Development Policy Centre at Crawford School of Public Policy, The Australian National University, published every second Friday.


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