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Research Developments from ACER

Higher Education

Image (c) The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) courtesy of the Scholarship and Alumni Branch.

Strengthening law and justice in Vanuatu

Early findings from the second year of the Australia Awards Global Tracer Facility’s research into the ongoing impact of the Awards reveal benefits for communities in Vanuatu and Australia.

The Australia Awards Global Tracer Facility is a research-based project designed to evaluate the long term development contributions and public and economic diplomacy outcomes of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade’s investment in the Australia Awards.

Now in its second year of operation, the Australia Awards Global Tracer Facility has just released a new Case Study on the impact of Australia Awards on alumni from Vanuatu who studied law and justice in Australia from 2006-2010.

Researchers found that alumni are making strong contributions to the development of the legal and judicial sectors in Vanuatu by using specialised skills, knowledge, and practices gained on scholarship.

Specific benefits identified as a result of alumni activity were:

  • improvements in governance of customs and policing
  • the introduction of specialised legal knowledge and practice in the workforce
  • capacity development in the legal, police and customs workforces.

At a broader level, researchers found that, not only had alumni contributed to the achievement of their country’s development goals, but some alumni had even helped to shape those goals.

Furthermore, alumni demonstrated ongoing and ‘mutually beneficial’ professional ties with Australia, as well as ‘strong, positive views’ about their host country that foster goodwill and the advancement of mutual interests.

The research involved in-depth interviews with alumni, colleagues and key stakeholders in Vanuatu. Measures of success include the alumni’s use of knowledge and skills to contribute to development in their country, their links and networks with Australians and Australian organisations, and their perceptions of Australia.

Other case studies in 2018 will examine the impact of alumni on:

  • management and commerce in Mongolia 
  • education in Indonesia
  • the health sector in the Solomon Islands
  • public health and the environment in China. ■

Further information:

Read more about the Australia Awards Global Tracer Facility.

Read the full Case Study here.


About the author

Amanda Taylor is a Research Fellow in ACER’s Tertiary Education research program.

More [rd] articles by Amanda Taylor

View selected works of Amanda Taylor


About the author

Dr Daniel Edwards is the Research Director of ACER's Tertiary Education research program. 

More [rd] articles by Daniel Edwards

View selected works of Daniel Edwards

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