- Annual General Meeting of The Australian Association for the Advancement of Pacific Studies (AAAPS), 10 May 2013
- Dr. Hsiao-chun Hung returns to the Mariana Islands
- Vote buying prevalent in Indonesia and the Pacific
- The end of the Pacific? Sea-level change and Pacific Island livelihoods
- Politics, development and security in Oceania
- Kago, Kastom and Kalja: The Study of Indigenous Movements in Melanesia Today (Cahiers du Credo) (Volume 2)
- In conversation with Sir Mekere Morauta
- Engendering objects: Dynamics of Barkcloth and Gender among the Maisin of Papua New Guinea by
- Another Port Moresby community bulldozed
- Reflections on the PNG Budget Forum: Can devolved funding be effectively utilised
- European Investment Bank backs remote aviation investment in the South Pacific
- Lifting skills in the Pacific: using infrastructure procurement for skills transfer
- Fiji constitutional referendum? Unlikely
- CDI Policy Paper: Comparing Across Regions: Parties and Political Systems in Indonesia and the Pacific Islands
- SSGM’s ‘State of the Pacific’ Conference (25-26 June 2013)
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Tag Archives: Nauru
"In the latest issue of the Pacific Economic Monitor, released yesterday (March 26), the ADB forecasts that the average rate of growth in its 14 developing member countries in the Pacific region will fall to 5.2%, as earlier gains from major foreign investments and public infrastructure projects fade. The performance of the region’s larger natural resource exporting economies (Papua New Guinea (PNG) and Timor-Leste) continues to drive the economic outlook, with these two economies comprising about two-thirds of the weight in the regional growth average..." [read more].
Applications are now open for the 2014 round of Australia Awards Scholarships. Information for applicants, (including details of who to contact with scholarship inquiries and cut-off-dates for applications) are available on AusAID’s website. You may also view eligibility and other criteria related to the Australia Awards Pacific Scholarships (AAPS) program on the AusAID site.
UN climate change negotiations: The role and influence of the Alliance of Small Island States (report)
The Pacific Institute and Climate Change Institute at the ANU were privileged to host a public lecture on 19 February by Her Excellency Ms Marlene Inemwin Moses (pictured left), Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary, Permanent Representative of Nauru to the United Nations and Chair of the Alliance of Small Island States (AoSIS). Ambassador Moses was welcomed to the ANU by Assoc. Prof. Colin Filer, Co-Convenor of the ANU’s Pacific Institute and by Mr Gregory Andrews, Assistant Secretary, Finance, Forests and Development Branch, International Division of the Department of Climate Change and Energy Efficiency. The event was the first public lecture to be held in the new Barton Theatre at the ANU.
Ambassador Moses began with a brief history of AoSIS (founded 1990) and a description of the central role of AoSIS in UN climate change negotiations, making special mention of the fact that “the first UN proposal calling for a multilateral approach to tackling the dilemma, what would eventually become the Kyoto Protocol, was drafted by Nauru and submitted [by AoSIS] under the chairmanship of Trinidad and Tobago in 1994.” She then proceeded to elaborate on the controversial new climate change initiative supported by AoSIS – the Loss and Damage provisions – put on the agenda at the United Nations Climate Change Conference (UNCCC) in Doha in November last year.
Ambassador Moses presented an eloquent and impassioned case for the need to include loss and damage provisions in the ongoing climate change negotiations under the United Nations Framework Convention for Climate Change (UNFCCC). In her presentation, she detailed AoSIS’s three-part plan:
- “The first component recognizes that managing climate impacts demands acquiring baseline historical information about weather hazards and quantified assessments of a variety of new risks. The data should be used to guide the development and implementation of country-specific measures that reduce exposure to climate impacts in the first place.
- The second part resembles insurance systems commonly found in the developed world and would cover countries for costs associated with sudden climate impacts, such as tropical storms, hurricanes, floods, and droughts. This is particularly relevant for small islands because our populations tend to be concentrated in highly vulnerable coastal zones. What’s more, the elevated risks we face often make the cost of insurance premiums prohibitive, if coverage is available at all.
- Finally, the plan calls for the creation of an international solidarity fund that would compensate countries for economic and non-economic losses stemming from slow-onset climate impacts, such as sea-level rise, ocean acidification, coral bleaching, saltwater intrusion and desertification. This could include lost revenue to the tourism and fishing industries, cultural impacts, and, in the worse case, the cost of relocation should islands become uninhabitable.”
Ambassador Moses was emphatic about the need for all nations to engage on the issue of dangerous climate change, noting that for some Pacific countries it was not merely a concern, or a challenge for development, but an existential threat to communities, their lands, and their cultures. She made special mention of Kiribati and Tuvalu, which faces the paradoxical threat of a lack of water (through sustained drought) and rising sea-levels. Yet while the threat of dangerous climate change is profound in the Pacific, Moses noted that this problem is shared by many states and gave poignant examples of recent climate-related disasters around the world. This, she said, is the reason the 40 nations of the Alliance of Small Island States are united with the Least Developed Countries (LDC), the African Group of Negotiators (AGN) and the G77/China in their call for the inclusion of Loss and Damages provisions in the UNFCCC.
On the key question of the efficacy of climate change negotiations to date, Ambassador Moses was similarly resolute. She observed that “perhaps purposefully, the climate negotiations have become very much divorced from the decision-makers in capitals around the world who at the end of the day have to choose to solve this problem or not.” She also noted that in scientific and policy arenas and in the negotiations themselves, “complexity is too often used to disguise a lack of progress.” She expressed her profound concern that “fossil fuel interests hold undue influence in the capitals of the world” and belief that climate change is a “global problem that needs a global solution provided by global leaders….” stating that “if they believe it is a crisis, they need to go in to crisis mode. When there was a financial crisis, they moved into crisis mode – Well, my goodness, this is a crisis. That’s the way I feel about this situation… There has to be a revolution in the Climate Change Convention if we really want to make a difference.” On this issue, she did express optimism at recent comments by President Obama about climate change and her opinion that “we are closer to real action on climate from the United States than ever before.”
In a wide-ranging question and answer session that lasted half an hour, Ambassador Moses addressed some of the central issues related to the Loss and Damages provisions put forward at Doha. She also discussed the recent successes of Nauru (in its role as Chair of the Pacific Island States) at the recent Rio+20 Conference, where it helped ensure that the “blue economy”, climate change and key interests of Small Island Developing States (SIDS) were written into the final conference document, The Future We Want (United Nations General Assembly Resolution 66/288).
In conclusion, Ambassador Moses again stressed the need for greater recognition of the fundamental link between climate change and sustainable development – that states could not hope to meet their Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) or other aspirations when faced with threats posed to their very survival by climate change. “It was the Pacific island states that took the issue of climate change to the Security Council. We were told it could not be discussed there… but the Pacific was adamant and said it was an existential threat and that it had to be discussed there.” Although Nauru currently Chairs AoSIS, Moses also emphasised the need for climate change to be discussed widely in diverse fora and her belief that it was critically important such conversations not remain the preserve of the UNFCCC. This point resonated with the invitation she extended at the start of her lecture to all Pacific island students in the room, “to elevate our region’s engagement with the international community” and her hope that “our conversation today helps encourage you to become more involved in public service — whether at home or abroad.”
Ambassador Moses visit to Australia was sponsored by the Department of Climate Change and Energy Efficiency. A copy of the paper she presented at the ANU is available through the AoSIS website.
Stephen Howes (Director, Development Policy Centre) recently interviewed Michael Clemens, who leads the Migration and Development Initiative at the Center for Global Development (CGD). You may review a podcast or video of this presentation (with accompanying slides), or read an edited transcript of this interview in two parts, the first on the US Seasonal Worker Program, the second on Skilled Migration and the Australian Pacific Technical College (APTC).
Public Lecture: UN climate change negotiations – The role and influence of the Alliance of Small Island States
Her Excellency Ms Marlene Inemwin Moses, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary, Permanent Representative of Nauru to the United Nations and Chair of the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS).
This event is co-hosted by the ANU Climate Change Institute, the ANU Pacific Institute and the Department of Climate Change and Energy Efficiency.
“The December 2012 edition of the Pacific Economic Monitor examines the fiscal position of ADB’s Pacific developing member countries and their budget plans for 2013. Special articles included in this issue focus on economic management and growth prospects in smaller Pacific island economies” [read the report].
A fortnightly roundup of policy news in the Pacific by the Pacific Institute of Public Policy and the Development Policy Centre.
EuropeAid has issued a call for proposals for ‘Supporting culture as a vector of democracy and economic growth’ under the EU thematic programme Investing in People. Deadline for submission of concept notes is 18 December 2012. The call includes two lots with the following specific objectives:
- Lot 1: Encourage cultural expressions which promote diversity, intercultural dialogue and human and cultural rights, in the context of reconciliation, conflict resolution and democratisation
- Lot 2: Strengthen capacities of cultural actors for the development of a dynamic cultural sector contributing to economic growth and sustainable development
Full documentation is available on the EuropeAid website call ref. 133529. Most individuals and non-government organisations in Pacific islands nations and territories are eligible to apply (consult the list of beneficiary countries or territories).
Pacific Buzz (November 14): Pacific elections wrap | Fiji election preparations | Call to reorient PNG spending to boost recurrent budget | Agriculture and land in PNG | More
A fortnightly roundup of policy news in the Pacific by the Pacific Institute of Public Policy and the Development Policy Centre is now available.
This report investigates urbanization trends across the 14 Pacific developing member countries of the Asian Development Bank. It examines the history of Pacific urbanization, current state of infrastructure and service provision within urban areas, and systems of urban governance.
The Australian National University has a new student group geared towards increasing the awareness of Micronesians in Australia – the Micronesian and Australian Friends Association (MAFA). The ANU-chartered student group was formed in May 2012 by a small group of postgraduate students that became aware of the growing body of Micronesians and scholars of Micronesia at the ANU. Initially started as a social group to share ideas and love of Micronesian cultures, its members hope it will grow to lend support to and encourage a larger number of incoming Micronesian students to higher educational institutes in Australia.
‘Micronesia’ is considered both a broad geographical and cultural region of the Pacific, distinguished from the other subgroups of ‘Polynesia’ and ‘Melanesia’ and Southeast Asia, although with strong ties historically and linguistically to these oceanic neighbours. Consisting of over 2,000 islands stretching over hundreds of thousands of km2 of ocean, and 12 distinct cultural groups and languages, Micronesia is politically divided into 5 independent countries and 2 territories – the Republic of the Marshall Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, the Republic of Palau, the Republic of Kiribati (including Banaba, and the Line and Phoenix Islands), the Republic of Nauru, the US territories of Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, and Wake Island.
A region popularly associated with the United States, which acted as its official UN administrator post-WWII during the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands Period (TTPI), Micronesia has a colonial history including Spain, Germany, Australia, Great Britain and Japan. Australia has had an increasingly active role in recent years through its awarding of scholarships and grant funding to Micronesian students and local NGOs. This includes the ANU, which has seen a rise in students doing research in the region, as well as citizens migrating to Australia. Dr. Paul D’Arcy, Fellow at ANU’s School of Culture, History & Language notes “While ANU has a long history of research on Micronesia, this has always been somewhat random and largely based on the research priorities of individual staff and students…. Circumstances have altered in very positive ways in the last two years that suggest the momentum is here for a sustained and permanent on-campus presence of research (and hopefully teaching capacity) on Micronesia: the largest group of PhD students ever conducting PhD studies on Micronesia, and for the first time this includes a number of Micronesian students; enduring research projects on Micronesia that involve staff and post-graduates in a number of disciplines – most notably Archaeology and Natural History, and History; three courses that have contained Micronesian themes for a number of years now; and an increasing awareness in Micronesia of the possibilities offered by ANU for post-graduate research .”
Gonzaga Puas, current Phd student, long-time Australia resident, Micronesian, and MAFA Vice President concurs. “Micronesia has been the missing link in Pacific studies at ANU. Thanks to MAFA for playing its part in increasing the exposure of Micronesia as an area of academic scholarship and its aim is to promote friendship between Australian and Micronesian communities.”
MAFA is currently comprised of students, staff and community members living in Australia with an interest or background in greater Micronesia. Its mission is to (a) Promote knowledge of the greater Micronesian region; (b) Celebrate its diverse customs and values; (c) Encourage communication and cultural exchange between Micronesia and Australia; (d) Provide a support network for Micronesian students and scholars at the ANU and beyond. Current and planned activities include regular movie nights featuring documentaries, fiction films, television episodes and shorts about or set in the region; social gatherings featuring local foods and discussions; and the welcoming of visiting friends from the region. All activities are open to the public, and participation from the greater population is being emphasized.
“There’s already a history of great research in the Pacific region here at ANU of course, and we’re really excited to collaborate with and learn from other Pacific Islanders and innovative groups like Pasifika Australia,” says MAFA President Ingrid Ahlgren. “We’re a small humble group in Canberra now, but we foresee and plan for a future where we can be a friendly resource for Micronesians living abroad in Australia, and a collaborative support group for increasing research in the region.”
Savitri Taylor takes a close look at asylum seeker agreements between Australia and Nauru and PNG in the latest article in her series on Australian asylum seeker issues posted to InsideStory.org.
"The recently passed Australian legislation on asylum seekers which effectively resumed the off-shore processing detention centres in Nauru and Papua New Guinea (Manus Province) has shifted the Australian dominant public debate from “stop the boat people” mode into “Pacific solution” mode..." but what about of the character of the debate in PNG about the issue? [read more]
Pacific Buzz (August 22): Clinton to attend Pacific Forum | Pacific Solution returns | Solomon Islands prepares for troop withdrawal… and more
A fortnightly roundup of policy news in the Pacific by the Pacific Institute of Public Policy and the Development Policy Centre.
A new post to InsideStory of extracts from Michael Gordon’s 2005 account of his visit to the Australian government’s Nauru detention centre.
As part of its efforts to improve transparency (and revamp its website), AusAID continues to re-release country pages. The latest include: Samoa, Tonga and Nauru. For more, see AusAID’s Transparency Charter pages.
For three intensive days from July 11-13, a congregation of fifty-three scholars, activists, policy-makers, and practitioners met at ANU to exchange perspectives and engage in discussion on Sexualities, Sexual Rights and HIV in Papua New Guinea and the Pacific. This workshop symposium was conjointly convened by Professor Gilbert Herdt and Dr Katherine Lepani as part of the ARC Laureate Project led by Professor Margaret Jolly, Engendering Persons, Transforming Things. The event received support from the ANU Research School of Asia and the Pacific (RSAP), the AusAID International Seminar Support Scheme (ISSS), and the United Nations Development Programme Pacific Centre in Suva, Fiji. Professor Herdt’s intellectual leadership for the workshop symposium ermerged as a key activity during his two-month visit at ANU, under the RSAP Distinguished Visitor Program.
Participants at the workshop symposium came from Papua New Guinea, Fiji, Solomons, Vanuatu, the Cook Islands, Nauru, New Zealand, France, Canada and Australia. Governments, NGOs, advocacy groups, and churches were represented including the PNG National Aids Council Secretariat, Solomon Islands National AIDS Council, New Zealand AIDS Foundation, PNG Institute of Medical Research, UNAIDS PNG, UNDP Pacific Centre, Secretariat of the Pacific Community Regional Rights Resource Team, Pacific Islands AIDS Foundation, Igat Hope PNG, Fiji Network for People Living with HIV, Pacific Sexual Diversity Network, Wan Smol Bag Theatre, Pacific Counselling and Social Services, Caritas Australia, ChildFund Australia, Pacific Friends of the Global Fund, the National Catholic AIDS Office in PNG, and the Seventh Day Adventist and Anglican churches.
Professor Emeritus Susan Kippax of UNSW and Professor Gary Dowsett of La Trobe, respectively, both eminent social scientists and experts on sexuality and HIV, were the invited discussants for the workshop symposium. Dame Carol Kidu, former member of the PNG Parliament and a tireless advocate for human rights and law reform in PNG and the Pacific, provided reflective comments on advocacy and law reform processes in a special session on the first day that focused on Homosexuality Laws and Law Reform in the Pacific. Stuart Watson, UNAIDS Coordinator for PNG, provided a remarkable commentary on emerging themes of the third day.
The workshop was a model of open exchange and dialogue between diverse people, places and perspectives, including controversial issues, such as the influence of religiosity on sexual expression in the Pacific Islands. The format involved twenty-eight short plenary presentations in nine thematic sessions, allowing ample time for discussion and debate. Innovative new insights were developed about:
- Patterns of stigma, discrimination and violence against women, sexual minorities and people living with HIV in the Pacific;
- The persistence of punitive laws, many dating from the colonial period criminalizing sodomy and sex work and the urgent need for law reform
- The prominent role of Christian churches in both the prevention and treatment of HIV and the increasing conjunction of biomedical and faith-based healing
- The crucial advocacy role of organizations representing women and sexual minorities and people living with HIV in defending human rights.
Evaluations of the workshop were overwhelmingly positive, with many participants suggesting it marked a watershed moment in mutual understandings. The projected outcomes include ongoing collaboration in research and practice, a series of scholarly articles, and planned publication of some of the insights gained from the symposium.
You may download the program and abstracts for the workshop symposium.
Integral to the program was a public lecture by distinguished anthropologist Professor Gilbert Herdt, From Ritual Sex to Sexual Individuality: Tradition and Modernity in Sambia Sexual Culture, which attracted a packed audience. The lecture explored the profound transformations in sexual culture and gender relations among people in the Eastern Highlands of PNG since his first fieldwork in the 1970s: the end of initiations which made boys into mature, heterosexual men and warriors through practices of insemination, the reduced separation of men and women and changing notions of female pollution and male domination. Pervasive conversion to Seventh Day Adventist Christianity has catalysed new forms of intimate cohabitation and desire in marriages with enhanced female autonomy and a parallel denial of homosexual practice as both un-Christian and foreign. This lecture will form part of his forthcoming book The Singers are Gone. The Public Lecture was co-sponsored by the ARC Laureate Project, the RSAP Distinguished Visitor Program, and the ANU Gender Institute.
Prior to Professor Herdt’s lecture, Dr Nicole George of the University of Queensland launched the new ANU E-Press book, Engendering Violence in Papua New Guinea edited by Margaret Jolly and Christine Stewart with Carolyn Brewer. Amongst the large crowd who celebrated was Dame Carol Kidu, to whom the book is dedicated. It is available as a free download at http://epress.anu.edu.au/titles/engendering-violence-in-papua-new-guinea or in hard copy from ANU E-Press.
This document provides an update of the existing 2012 portfolio of Pacific energy sector projects and a summary of requested assistance for 2013.
From 1-14 July 2012, thousands of artists and performers from the region will gather in Honiara for the Pacific’s largest, most colourful and exciting cultural event. The 11th Festival of Pacific Arts will feature traditional and contemporary visual and performing arts – music, dance, oratory and story telling, theatre and film, handicrafts, literature, tattooing, fire walking, culinary arts, navigation and canoeing, fashion, photography and healing.
The Asian Development Bank has just released new fact sheets for the following Pacific Island nations: Cook Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Indonesia, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Nauru, New Zealand, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Timor-Leste, Tonga, Tuvalu, Vanuatu (other ADB country fact sheets).
CSS are for Masters by coursework only. (more…)
Applications open: Australian Development and Australian Leadership Awards Scholarships (close 30 April 2012)
Applications are now open for Australian Development Scholarships and Australian Leadership Award Scholarships (facilitated through AusAID). Information about specific eligibility criteria are available for the following Pacific Island states:
Cook Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, French Pacific Collectivities (New Caledonia, French Polynesia, and Wallis and Futuna), Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Nauru, Niue and Tokelau, Papua New Guinea, Republic of Palau, Samoa, Solomon Islands, timor-leste, Tonga, Tuvalu, Vanuatu.
More information about opening and closing dates for AusAID’s ADS and ALAS Scholarships is available here. Other information critical to these scholarships is available on the AusAID Scholarships website at www.ausaid.gov.au/scholar/publications.cfm.
2011 was a year that demonstrated that stability and peace can’t be taken for granted. As old regimes crumbled and new democracies were forged, the impact of uncertainty, conflict and fragility on human development was made clear. Four years out from the deadline set for the Millennium Development Goals, not a single fragile state has achieved any of the MDGs. In fact, a growing share of the world’s poor live in fragile states and some predict that this share will grow to more than 50 percent within the next five years. It is unsurprising then that fragile states are difficult environments in which to deliver aid ... (read more...)
These publications are now available at:
Climate Change in the Pacific is a rigorously researched, peer-reviewed scientific assessment of the climate of the western Pacific region. Building on the Fourth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change… [read more...]