ACU grant helps promote gender equity at University of Papua New Guinea

The UPNG School of Business and Public Policy (SBPP) was awarded an ACU grant for a workshop addressing gender inequality with a view that all SBPP program curriculums would include information about advantages of the Gender Equity and Social Inclusion policy (GESI).

Launched by the government of PNG in 2015, implementation of the policy has remained a challenge and gender disparity is still evident in many aspect of PNG society, including education.

The ACU supported workshop was an opportunity for the UPNG to increase awareness about this policy and issues that it raises, establishing a baseline of understanding GESI and other related issues.

The workshop resulted in incorporating a 50/50 gender distribution in new Master of Economic and Public Policy scholarships and the Australian National University Student Exchange Program. The planned Accountancy Day Program now includes a presentation by the Executive Director of the Department of Personnel Management and the curriculum of SPBB is being reviewed to ensure students have knowledge and understanding of the GESI policy and its advantages. As a result, students have an opportunity to choose GESI as one of their end of year projects.

The ACU supported workshop served as a stepping stone to roll out similar workshops in other UPNG schools with an aim of securing university leadership and university community support to move towards more substantial gender mainstreaming activities. They recently piloted a workshop for students focusing on Gender Equity and Social Inclusion that will be rolled out in 2019. As a cross cutting issue, GESI will now be incorporated in all student learning activities.