Success Stories

PNG bureaucrats embrace evidence-based policy approach

Papua New Guinea’s future public service leaders want to sharpen policy development through improved research and better information sharing among agencies.

High-performing middle managers from key public sector agencies are attending policy masterclasses offered through the Pacific Leadership and Governance Precinct.

The four-day course, run by the University of Queensland, looks at how better policy outcomes can be delivered through a rigorous evidence-based approach.

Department of Health technical advisor Charles Kaprangi said improved policy development would help overcome some of the technical and administrative challenges his agency faced.

“(In) a lot of our policy development processes, we’ve missed out evidence based policy development where research data is used,” he said.

“I’ve learnt the importance of actually doing that process of maybe carrying out the research. That works as evidence for you to do up a policy instead of just talking around the table and getting straight onto a policy.”

The course features units on commissioning research, drafting briefs, identifying design problems and communicating policy messages.

Fellow participant Jennifer Adema, the acting director of the Department of Provincial Affairs’ performance monitoring division, said information coordination was one of the biggest challenges in delivering good policy.

“You’ve got respective agencies having their own programs which support a certain section of a policy, and so to coordinate all the efforts and share information, that poses a challenge in itself,” she said.

“I think one of the key learning outcomes is the sharing of information and data to assist us in regards to the implementation of policies, as well as the influencing of decisions.”