ANU-UPNG Partnership

2022 Master of Economic and Public Policy (MEPP) students pictured with their lecturer Dr Nematullah Bizhan (centre).

The partnership between the University of Papua New Guinea’s School of Business and Public Policy (SBPP) and the Australian National University’s Crawford School of Public Policy (Crawford) commenced in 2012. In March 2015, a new MOU between these two national universities provided a stronger foundation for this collaboration, and in 2018 the MOU was extended for a further three years. In August 2015 a new grant agreement between ANU and the Australian Aid program provided the means to significantly expand the partnership until 2020. A second phase of the project, also supported by Australian Aid, will continue this partnership to early 2024.

The ANU-UPNG Partnership provides direct benefit to hundreds of students, some of whom will go on to be future leaders, and also helps strengthen SBPP, especially in the key areas of economics and public policy.

The ANU-UPNG Partnership has a focus on strengthening SBPP teaching and the student experience, collaborative research and outreach, and exchanges for faculty and students in economics and public policy.

Strengthening SBPP teaching and the student experience

Since 2015, ANU staff have been teaching undergraduate and postgraduate courses across the Division of Economics and the Division of Public Policy Management. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, most of the teaching staff had to return to Australia at the end of March 2020. Staff continued to deliver lectures to UPNG remotely through 2020 and 2021 – with the support of the remaining staff member still based in Port Moresby. From 2022, staff returned to teaching in person again.

The Sir Mekere Morauta Award, established by the Development Policy Centre in 2021, is awarded to the top male and female economics graduates each year.

Collaborative research and outreach

The Development Policy Centre is involved in a variety of collaborative research with SBPP UPNG. The Centre and the School co-host the annual PNG Update which has been held at UPNG’s Waigani Campus (Port Moresby) since 2014.

The PNG Update is the country’s premier forum for the analysis of contemporary economic and social issues and feedback from attendees suggests that participation, discussion and quality of conference has significantly improved over time. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, we were unable to hold the conference in 2020 and 2021. The PNG Update was held in October 2022, and was opened by PNG Prime Minister James Marape.

We also support a number of other workshops and seminars, and many Devpol faculty undertake PNG-related research under the rubric of the PNG Project. The Centre provides outreach for our collaborative work through a variety of channels, including public seminars at UPNG and ANU (in-person and online), blog posts and occasional discussion papers.

The edited collection Papua New Guinea: Government, Economy and Society was published by ANU Press in March 2022. Edited by Devpol Director Stephen Howes and Executive Dean of the School of Business and Public Policy at UPNG Lekshmi N. Pillai, it features contributors from both the ANU and UPNG. The collection was launched at the 2022 PNG Update by PNG Prime Minister James Marape.

Faculty exchanges

We encourage two-way visits between ANU and UPNG staff, with a particular focus on staff development. An SBPP graduate commenced the Master’s in International and Development Economics (MIDEC) at the ANU Crawford School in 2022, and two recent SBPP graduates will undertake MIDEC in 2023, with a further five students having completed their studies, returning to teach at UPNG.

The summer school program brings ten of the top performing final-year undergraduate students in economics and public policy from UPNG to Canberra to study at Crawford School and meet key figures in the Australia-PNG relationship. The summer school program began in 2018, paused in 2021 and 2022, and resumed in 2023.

Partnership staff

The current Devpol staff involved in teaching and administration of the ANU-UPNG Partnership are:

ANU-UPNG seminar series

Change in PNG’s fresh food marketplaces over the past 60 years
Friday 24 February, 12:30–1:30pm PNG time/1:30–2:30pm Canberra time
Dr Timothy Sharp, Geographer, Pacific Livelihoods Research Group, Curtin University; Dr Mark Busse, Economic Anthropologist and Senior Lecturer, University of Auckland; Dr Mike Bourke OL, Honorary Associate Professor, Australian National University
» register

The important, unanswered questions from PNG’s 2022 elections
28 October 2022
Dr Terence Wood, Research Fellow, Development Policy Centre, ANU
» view presentation

The determinants of excess reserves in the PNG banking system
30 September 2022
Thomas Wangi, PhD Scholar, Arndt-Corden Department of Economics, ANU

Institutional sources of cooperation, competition and conflict in developing countries
2 September 2022, 12:30–1:30pm
Emeritus Professor William Maley

Financial inclusion in Papua New Guinea
5 August 2022
Laura Nettuno, PhD Scholar, Vanderbilt University
» view presentation

Real wage growth in Papua New Guinea over three decades
24 June 2022
Dr Martin Davies, Associate Professor of Economics, Washington and Lee University, and Visiting Fellow, Development Policy Centre, ANU
» view presentation

What has limited preferential voting changed in Papua New Guinea?
27 May 2022
Dr Terence Wood, Research Fellow, Development Policy Centre, ANU; Maholopa Laveil, Lecturer in Economics, School of Business and Public Policy, UPNG
» view presentation
» read paper

Making decentralisation work in PNG: lessons learnt and future directions
5 April 2022
Hon. Allan Bird, Governor of East Sepik Province, PNG
» watch livestream replay

Uneven development and its effects: livelihoods and urban and rural spaces in Papua New Guinea
25 March 2022
Dr John Cox, Honorary Lecturer, School of Culture, History and Language, ANU; Dr Grant Walton, Fellow, Development Policy Centre, ANU; Joshua Goa, Tutor, Division of Social Work, School of Humanities, UPNG; Dunstan Lawihin, Lecturer, Division of Social Work, School of Humanities, UPNG
» watch livestream replay
» view presentation
» read book chapter

Have living standards improved in PNG over the last two decades?
25 February 2022
Dr Manoj Pandey, Lecturer, Development Policy Centre, ANU; Professor Stephen Howes, Director, Development Policy Centre, ANU
» view presentation

Whose right? Forceful evictions of informal settlements from state land in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea
26 November 2021
Dr Michelle Nayahamui Rooney, Research Fellow, Development Policy Centre, ANU
» view presentation

Decentralisation in PNG: a political analysis
29 October 2021
Professor Stephen Howes, Director, Development Policy Centre, ANU; Dr Lawrence Sause, Deputy Executive Dean (Resources and Planning), School of Business and Public Policy, UPNG; Dr Lhawang Ugyel, Lecturer, School of Business, University of New South Wales
» view presentation
» read book chapter

State fragility in PNG
1 October 2021
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
» view presentation
» read paper

Communication, information and the media in PNG
27 August 2021
Dr Amanda H A Watson, Research Fellow, Department of Pacific Affairs, ANU
» read book chapter

PNG’s economic trajectory: The long view
30 July 2021
Professor Stephen Howes, Director, Development Policy Centre, ANU; Rohan Fox, Research Officer, Development Policy Centre, ANU; Maholopa Laveil, Lecturer, Economics Division, UPNG; Luke McKenzie, Analyst, Department of the Treasury; Dr Albert Prabhakar Gudapati, Head of Economics Division, UPNG; Dek Joe Sum, Associate Lecturer and Project Coordinator, Development Policy Centre, ANU
» view presentation
» read book chapter

The path to kina convertibility: study of the foreign exchange market of Papua New Guinea
25 June 2021
Martin Davies, Associate Professor of Economics, Washington and Lee University; Visiting Fellow, Development Policy Centre, ANU; Visiting Associate Professor, UPNG
» view presentation
» read paper

Elections and Politics in Papua New Guinea
28 May 2021
Dr Terence Wood, Research Fellow, Development Policy Centre, ANU; Michael Kabuni, Lecturer, Political Science Division, UPNG; Maholopa Laveil, Lecturer, Economics Division, UPNG; Geejay P. Milli, Lecturer, Political Science Division, UPNG
» view presentation
» read book chapter

Sir Mekere Morauta Award

Sir Mekere Morauta Award was inaugurated in 2021 by the Development Policy Centre in memory of the former esteemed PNG Prime Minister who died in late 2020, and who was the first economics graduate from UPNG. It is awarded to the top male and female economics graduates each year.

2022

Recipients: Esther Marinjambi and David Poka

2021

Recipients: Esther Kabura and Hava Kasa

Updated:  31 January 2023/Responsible Officer:  Devpolicy Admin/Page Contact:  CAP Web Team