The Bung Wantaim seminar series brings together Pacific Islander Higher Degree Research (HDR) students and HDR students who study the Pacific to showcase their important research from across the Australian National University (ANU). Bung Wantaim is a Tok Pisin word signifying a "true coming together.
During this series, presentations will be given by a variety of scholars from different perspectives and different disciplines to share their knowledge with the Pacific research community at ANU.
This seminar will be held on Zoom and recorded. There will be a Q&A session after each presentation.
Eileen Bobone (ANU Department of Pacific Affairs)
The Big Woman: Voter Behaviours and Attitudes towards Women Candidates
There are many obstacles that female candidates face in contesting national elections in the Pacific. While the barriers to improved political participation on the part of women are increasingly well understood, what is not so well understood are the reasons why and the conditions under which individual voters – male and female – vote for a woman candidate. I look at Rigo District, in Papua New Guinea as a case study because in the 2017 National elections, 10 per cent of its voters gave their votes to women candidates. Being a patrilineal society, the dichotomy is worth investigating. In New Ireland Province, a matrilineal society 13 per cent of its voters gave their votes to woman candidates. I use both qualitative and quantitative methods to collect my data. With evidence-based research, the discussion explores how scholars studying female candidates and voter preferences could push for ways to promote greater women representation.
Romalani Leofo (ANU College of Business and Economics)
The Importance of Auditor’s Key Audit Matters disclosures: Evidence from Stock-Price Crash Risk
Taking advantage of an audit reporting regime change in the United Kingdom (UK) in 2013, this study examines the relationship between auditors’ key audit matters disclosures and stock price crash risk for UK premium-listed companies. The new audit reporting requirements include auditor disclosures of significant risks of material misstatements during the audit known as key audit matters (KAMs). Using a sample of 370 companies, I find a significant negative association between the total number of KAMs and the number of newly issued KAMs and one-year ahead crash risk. I also find that accounts-related KAMs, specifically impairment and revenue-related KAMs are negatively associated with future crash risk. Further analyses show that the mitigating effect of newly issued KAMs is more important in weak monitoring conditions of non-specialist auditors, weaker board independence and less audit fees.
Dori Patay (ANU School of Regulation and Global Governance)
Navigating conflicting mandates and interests in the governance of the commercial determinants of health: the case of tobacco in Fiji and Vanuatu
The consumption of tobacco, alcohol, and unhealthy foods and beverages drives the noncommunicable disease crisis in the Pacific. The control of these unhealthy commodities requires more than the engagement of the health sector; trade, industry, agricultural, and economic policies have to support this goal as well. However, the objectives of these sectors do not always align with public health goals and conflicting mandates can be aggravated by the interests and influence of unhealthy commodity industries. Pacific Small Island Developing States face particular difficulties in negotiating such governance dilemma due to vulnerabilities arising from their size, geographic isolation, and low- and middle-income economies. Analysing tobacco control in Fiji and Vanuatu, Dori’s research aims to shed light on the interests, ideas, and institutions which shape the ways these countries govern the commercial determinants of health.
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