Professor Stephen Howes

Developing a research centre for the region

04 May 2015

A passion for helping others led Professor Stephen Howes to set up a major think tank at Crawford School of Public Policy.

In a career that has spanned the globe - including 11 years at the World Bank in the US and India - Howes has always been interested in the role of foreign aid.

While working for AusAid as Chief Economist, he started visiting Papua New Guinea (PNG). It is this stint that forms the basis for the Development Policy Centre, at Crawford School.

The Centre aims to improve the effectiveness of Australian Aid and contributes to better global development policy.

“Papua New Guinea is such an inspiring country and it’s such an important country to Australia,” Howes said.

“Crawford School has a strong research presence in PNG and the Development Policy Centre aims to support the development of PNG and the Pacific region.”

After starting the Centre in 2010 with two staff, Howes has overseen its rapid growth as Director. It employs 10 people, currently has three PhD students and has secured philanthropic funding from the Harold Mitchell Foundation. It has also entered into a partnership with the University of Papua New Guinea.

“I enjoy teaching because it forces you to stay up-to-date with literature and it forces you to think about the pressing issues of the day,” Howes said.

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