Lost in translation: Partnerships for authentic education in Papua New Guinea


  • Juliana Mohok McLaughlin Queensland University of Technology


Pacific Island countries are recipients of considerable education reform projects, many of which are sponsored by various global donor agencies.  These agencies have become partners for development in the region.  Research cautions that development projects may have detrimental influences as their designs and delivery often ignore the economic, cultural and social contexts of recipient countries.  This paper explores issues impacting on the capacity of educators to lead educational change in Papua New Guinea. While initiatives in capacity building are offered, contradictions within the reform processes identify serious questions about policy development, ownership and capacity building.  These contradictions relate to the sustainability of such programmes, collaboration and partnerships between the National Department of Education, universities, donor agencies and scholars who advocate for authentic education for Papua New Guinea.

Author Biography

Juliana Mohok McLaughlin, Queensland University of Technology

Dr Juliana McLaughlin is an academic at Queensland University of Technology, where she teaches and researches in Indigenous studies, education and research ethics.  She is a recipient of two Australian Government competitive research grants (ARC Linkage and ALTC).  Dr McLaughlin is a member of journal editorial boards in Australia and PNG. She publishes in decolonising university curriculum, research and comparative education.