Health and Education

In 2016, Dr Grant Walton, Dr Tony Swan and Ms Tara Davda at the Development Policy Centre, together with Ms Denise Lokinap and Mr Peter Kanaparo at UPNG and Mr Colin Wiltshire at the State Society and Governance in Melanesia Project (SSGM), conducted research into the effectiveness of public expenditure on health and education in Papua New Guinea. This research builds on the findings of the A Lost Decade? report, produced in partnership with the National Research Institute (NRI).

The 2016 research included follow-up fieldwork in Gulf, East New Britain and Central provinces with in-depth research at the same schools, health facilities and administrative institutions visited in 2012 while conducting research for A Lost Decade?. This case study research will provide insights into:

  • how to get more external support to health clinics;
  • how to get more mileage from large school subsidy payments; and
  • performance differences between health facilities and schools.

Through this research, the team developed a more nuanced understanding of the geographical, economic, social and administrative factors that shape performance in health and education service delivery. Fieldwork and analysis in 2016 was conducted in partnership with counterparts at the University of Papua New Guinea and insights from case studies are augmented through statistical analysis of key national databases – such as the PNG national grade eight results. Research outputs from this work are available below.

This highly policy-relevant research will be of interest to government departments, donors, development agencies, NGOs, academics and other researchers.

Publications and Presentations

Discussion Papers
The challenges of providing free education in Papua New Guinea
Grant Walton, Tara Davda and Peter Kanaparo

Blog Posts
“Free” education policy in PNG: a tale of two provinces
Creeping re-centralisation in PNG’s education sector
Research on anti-corruption messages and sharing education findings in PNG
The beginning of the end of “free education” in PNG?
Improving quality education in a world obsessed with student numbers: evidence from PNG
UPNG-ANU academics begin health and education research

Journal Articles
Walton, GW (forthcoming) Fee-free education, decentralisation and the politics of scale in Papua New Guinea. Journal of Education Policy.
» access online

2016 Presentations
2016 PNG Update: The unintended consequences of PNG’s tuition-free education policy
Grant Walton, Peter Kanaparo, Tara Davda and the ANU-UPNG partnership team.

» view presentation
» listen to podcast

2017 Presentations
2017 PNG Update: The challenges of free education in Papua New Guinea
Grant Walton, Tara Davda and Peter Kanaparo

» watch video
» download slides

Updated:  25 February 2016/Responsible Officer:  Crawford Engagement/Page Contact:  Devpolicy Admin