Past Events

This page provides a list of archived events we have held, including video recordings, related blogs, and (more recently) audio podcasts: Devpolicy Talks.

2021 | 2020 | 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011
Development and the Pacific Labour Scheme – a longitudinal survey of Timorese applicants and participants
Development and the Pacific Labour Scheme – a longitudinal survey of Timorese applicants and participants
12.30–1.30pm 13 October 2021
Dr Michael Rose

» watch livestream replay
» view presentation

The Pacific Labour Scheme (PLS) allows people from nine Pacific countries and Timor-Leste to work for up to three years for a designated employer in regional Australia. This seminar introduces the first stage of a longitudinal survey designed to understand any difference it makes to Timorese households.

Our sample consists of two groups: 27 Timorese PLS workers at a meat packing plant in Warrnambool, Victoria, and 76 people in Dili who applied for the PLS, but were not selected. We survey their pre-departure characteristics, augmented by long-term ethnographic observation. We find that the PLS recruits from the best educated young people in Timor-Leste who, nonetheless, have limited employment prospects at home. Although overwhelmingly urban, most were born in rural areas. They seek entry into the PLS to mitigate the poverty and insecurity faced by their families, who often remain there. Income sharing is a deeply felt – and in some cases ritualised – imperative, a factor that is likely to diffuse remittances beyond the capital. Participation is also aspirational. Applicants value work in Australia as a learning experience and as a way of funding future educational and business endeavours for themselves and their kin, often (in an interesting point of difference from their Pacific cousins) envisaging these through recourse to Indonesian models of educational and material attainment. Although many respondents would settle permanently in Australia given the chance, this aspiration was often explained in terms of wanting to better fulfil a perceived duty to contribute financially to family and homeland.

Speaker

Dr Michael Rose, Research Fellow, Development Policy Centre, ANU

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PNG Economic Database launch
PNG Economic Database launch
11am–12.30pm 30 September 2021
Various speakers

» PNG Economic Database
» watch livestream replay
» read speech by The Treasurer of Papua New Guinea, The Hon. Ian Ling Stuckey

Consistent data on the Papua New Guinea economy back to independence is sparse. To fill this gap, the ANU-UPNG partnership has created the PNG Economic Database. This online database contains economic data for PNG back to independence, with more than 160 series.

The database was launched by the Treasurer of PNG Ian Ling-Stuckey at the University of Papua New Guinea.

Program

Master of Ceremony: Dr. Lawrence SAUSE, Deputy Executive Dean (Resources & Planning), School of Business and Public Policy.

Time (AEST) Speaker
11.00am Prayer
Jolanda Mathew, Lecturer, Economics Division, School of Business and Public Policy, University Of Papua New Guinea
11.10am Introduction
Professor Frank Griffin, Vice-Chancellor, University Of Papua New Guinea
11.15am Welcome
Robert Igara, Chancellor, University Of Papua New Guinea
11.25am ANU-UPNG Partnership
Professor C. Lekshmi N. Pillai, Executive Dean, School of Business and Public Policy, University Of Papua New Guinea
11.30am ANU-UPNG Partnership
Professor Helen Sullivan, Dean, College of Asia and the Pacific, Australian National University
11.35am Felicitation Address
His Excellency John Philip, Australian High Commissioner to Papua New Guinea|
11.50am Launch
Hon. Ian Ling-Stuckey, Treasurer of Papua New Guinea
12.10pm Comments on the PNG Economic Database
Professor Stephen Howes, Director, Development Policy Center, Crawford School of Public Policy, College of Asia and the Pacific, Australian National University
12.20pm Closing Remarks
Professor Fiona Yap, Director, Crawford School of Public Policy, College of Asia and the Pacific, Australian National University
12.25pm Closing Remarks
Professor Frank Griffin, Vice-chancellor, The University of Papua New Guinea

The PNG Economic Database is a project of the partnership between the ANU Crawford School of Public Policy and the UPNG School of Business and Public Policy. We gratefully acknowledge funding from the PNGAus Partnership.

PNG contact:
Julie Sowano
E jsowano@upng.ac.pg
T +675 3267301

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State fragility in PNG
State fragility in PNG
12.30–1.30pm 1 October 2021
Dr Nematullah Bizhan and Emanual Gorea

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» read paper

The case of PNG shows the difficulty of forging a national identity and creating effective state institutions. State weakness and societal fragmentation are dominant. The archipelago nature of the country has had a dominant role in the latter. Politics in this context shows a stable-fragile characteristic. On the one hand, despite persistent political instability, democracy has survived in the past half-century mainly due to societal diversity and the consensual nature of decision-making embedded in communities. On the other, even though PNG is a resource-rich county, successive governments have not converted the economic benefits of the mineral boom into effective development outcomes, and high levels of poverty and inequality exist. Many of these characteristics reinforce each other, trapping the country, for now, in a low-level equilibrium. This seminar examines dimensions of state fragility and look at what might change, and how PNG might break out of the equilibrium currently trapping the country in poverty and state weakness.

This seminar is based on the speakers’ working paper, A weak state and strong microsocieties in PNG.

Speakers

Dr Nematullah Bizhan
Lecturer in Public Policy, Development Policy Centre, ANU

Emanual Gorea
Head of Public Policy Management Division, School of Business and Public Policy, UPNG

The ANU-UPNG seminar series is part of the partnership between the ANU Crawford School of Public Policy and the UPNG School of Business and Public Policy, supported by the PNG-Aus Partnership.

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Afghanistan’s crisis: the dangers of genocide and politicide
Afghanistan’s crisis: the dangers of genocide and politicide
4–6pm 23 August 2021
Various speakers

» watch the recording

With the Taliban back in power, a 20-year US-led military intervention and ostensible democratic project has witnessed a most unceremonious demise. Many Afghans (in Afghanistan and elsewhere) feel a profound sense of betrayal, and fears abound. The breakneck speed of the Taliban onslaught following US troop withdrawals sent shivers down Afghan spines. Reports of atrocities and reprisals against civilians are on the rise. The danger of genocide and politicide is real. What can the international community including Australia do to preserve some of the precious gains made over the last 20 years? What can they do to ensure protection of civilians – many of whom have been stalwart allies in the democratic statebuilding project – as the Taliban manoeuvre to take the reins of power?

This seminar brings together a group of internationally-recognised Afghan scholars, practitioners, and scholars of Afghanistan. It is intended both to inform the audience and help mobilise urgent collective action in support of securing the most vulnerable and at risk in Afghanistan.

Panelists

Dr Srinjoy Bose, Senior Lecturer in Politics and International Relations, UNSW

Professor William Maley, Emeritus Professor of Diplomacy, ANU

Dr Omar Sharifi, Assistant Professor in Social Science, American University of Afghanistan

Farkhondeh Akbari, PhD Scholar, ANU

Dr Niamatullah Ibrahimi, Lecturer in International Relations, La Trobe University

Maryam Popal Zahid, Director, Afghan Women on the Move

Dr Nematullah Bizhan, Lecturer in Public Policy, Development Policy Centre, ANU

This webinar is free and open to the public. Presentations will be recorded and available after the event on the Development Policy Centre website.

UNSWLTUMESF

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Communication, information and the media in PNG
Communication, information and the media in PNG
12.30–1.30pm 27 August 2021
Dr Amanda H A Watson

Communication and information are essential to all aspects of life. This presentation explored the flows of communication and information in Papua New Guinea (PNG). Do citizens have the means to communicate their views? Do they have access to timely information? Communication and information are crucial to governance and effective democracy. A key component of a functioning democracy is a citizenry that is well informed and actively engaged in debates about government policies. In PNG, the mainstream media has a fragile freedom but does not carry out sufficient in-depth investigations. Urban residents are much more easily able to access the media than those living in rural villages. But what about new technologies – mobile telephones, the internet and social media? The presentation discussed how they form an evolving part of the communication and information landscape in PNG.

Speaker

Dr Amanda H A Watson is a Research Fellow with the Department of Pacific Affairs, Australian National University. From January 2017 to August 2019, she was part of a small team of ANU academics based in Port Moresby, teaching courses in the University of Papua New Guinea’s School of Business and Public Policy under the ANU-UPNG Partnership. Dr Watson has also taught at Divine Word University, Macquarie University, Queensland University of Technology and TAFE NSW. Her research interests include telecommunications, media, information and communication in the Pacific region.

This presentation is based on the speaker’s chapter in the forthcoming ANU-UPNG edited volume on contemporary issues in PNG.

The ANU-UPNG seminar series is part of the partnership between the ANU Crawford School of Public Policy and the UPNG School of Business and Public Policy, supported by the PNG-Aus Partnership.

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