Launch statement by PNG NRI Acting Director Dr. Osborne Sanida


Launch Statement by PNG NRI Acting Director Dr. Osborne Sanida

Thursday 21 January 2021

In a Referendum conducted in December 2019, as provided for in the Bougainville Peace Agreement (BPA) of 2001, ninety eight percent (98%) of the people who voted, chose ‘Independence’ over ‘Greater Autonomy’ for Bougainville. As required by the BPA, the outcome of the Referendum is subject to ratification by the National Parliament following consultation with the Bougainville Government.

The Bougainville Referendum Research Project at the PNG NRI commissioned two independent research reports to inform critical developments in the Post Referendum era. One report discusses possible institutional arrangements to assist negotiations on Bougainville’s political future whilst the other looks at ideas on raising adequate revenues for the Bougainville Government to achieve fiscal independence.

We are now pleased to launch these reports and have them available for public discourse.

Research Report 8: Institution Building in Post Referendum Bougainville
This report was undertaken by Professor Cheryl Saunders and Dr. Anna Dziedzic from the Constitutional Transformation Network of the Melbourne Law School, University of Melbourne, Australia. The report looks at the possible institutional requirements for governance in post-referendum Bougainville. The primary target audience for this report is those engaged in the consultations between the Bougainville and PNG Governments following the referendum.

Research Report 9: Increasing Revenues for the Bougainville Government
This report was undertaken by a team of economists from Canberra: Professor Satish Chand, Professor Ronald Duncan and Dr. Theodore Levantis. The report looks at how the Bougainville Government can increase its revenues so that Bougainville can increase revenues for its budget and achieve economic independence.

The contents of the reports have been presented to key stakeholders in a Zoom Conference in October of 2020. This was to allow feedback for the research teams to refine their reports. Videos of the presentations made by the research teams can be accessed via links provided on the PNG NRI website ( and on the PNG NRI Social Media platforms.

Additionally, two Commentaries, one on each of the reports outlining the contents of the reports and the main focus and messages from the reports have been posted on the PNG NRI website and on its social media pages. Furthermore, the Executive Summary of the two reports have been extracted and posted for reference.

Thank you the media for the important role you play in the dissemination of the reports. Should you require any further information, the BRRP team can also be contacted on email: or on phone: +675 326 0061/ +675 326 0300 for any other information.

Finally, on behalf of the NRI Council and Management, I would like to thank everyone involved in producing these reports. In particular, the authors of the reports; the BRRP team led by Dr. Thomas Webster; all persons involved in the logistics and administrative work at PNG NRI and external partners; and the Government of PNG and Bougainville Government.

The Finance Section manages the Institute’s finances and provides advice to Management in accordance with the Public Finance Management Act and International Accounting Standards (IAS). It ensures that NRI’s commercial units operate in accordance with the Public Services Management Act and the relevant General Orders.

The Section also ensures that all business activities are operating in accordance with set PNG NRI policies; and that contracts advertised, vetted, and approved by the PNG NRI Tenders Committee (a sub-committee of the PNG NRI Council) are transparently disbursed, consistent with the approved scopes, principles, and guidelines.

The Ground and Facilities Section manages and maintains the upkeep and appearance of the PNG NRI Campus office environment and the maintenance of all PNG NRI properties, including office buildings and staff residential houses on the PNG NRI campus. It also manages the Institute’s rental properties and staff houses off campus.

The Section also oversees the PNG NRI security, and also ensures that utilities such as water, sewerage, and electricity are operational.


  • Walo Wayne – Human Resource Manager
  • Adrin Manavutah – Human Resource Assistant


The Human Resources Section is responsible for the development and implementation of human resources policies and procedures that ensure the Institute’s ability to attract, retain, develop, and manage a highly engaged and committed workforce through the provision of systematic, coordinated HR services across each of the research programs and Corporate Services sections, consistent with the Public Services Management Act 


To attract and retain the best quality staff.


  • High quality staff are attracted to the PNG NRI through effective recruitment strategies and workforce planning.
  • PNG NRI becomes an Employee of Choice through appropriate remuneration and benefits packages to meet market trends, consistent with the Public Service Management Act. 


1. The re-alignment and right-sizing of research programs and NRI staff.
2. The creation of appropriate research and corporate pathways for career development.
3. Streamlined recruitment process for new staff.
4. PNG NRI staff remuneration and benefits are continually reviewed and updated to meet market trends, consistent with the Public Service Management Act.
5. PNG NRI staff and contracted and commissioned consultants are provided with an efficient renewal and application process.
6. PNG NRI Corporate policies handbook are regularly updated and made available to all staff.

The Executive Support Section assists the Institute’s Management and the PNG NRI Council in carrying out their responsibilities, promoting ethical and inclusive governance. The Section supports the monitoring and reporting of Institute activities; coordinates strategic and operational planning processes; provides advice and information to Council; and facilitates the effective communication of Council and management decisions to key stakeholders.


To support the Institute’s Management and the PNG NRI Council in carrying out their responsibilities and promoting ethical and inclusive governance.

Objectives and Outputs

CE1: PNG NRI Council Meetings are facilitated effectively and efficiently.


  • Ensure the efficient setup of Council Meetings.
  • Ensure effective and timely meeting minutes are produced.
  • Council decisions are implemented according to schedule.
  • Outstanding Council decisions are diligently followed up.

CE2: Reports to Council are timely and relevant.


  • Quarterly reports for Research, Knowledge Management, and Corporate Services Divisions are prepared on time.
  • Quarterly and Annual Financial Reports are prepared.
  • Meeting Minutes of PNG NRI Council sub-committees are prepared on time.
  • Council meeting Agendas include submissions made to Council.
  • Contribute to Annual Reports and other corporate documents.

CE3: Decisions of Council and Senior Management are effectively implemented.


  • The Council Decisions Matrix is accurate and regularly updated.
  • PNG NRI Management operates efficiently within the parameters of Council decisions.


Establishment and Mandate 

The Papua New Guinea National Research Institute (PNG NRI) was established as the  New  Guinea Research Unit (NGRU) of the Australian National University in 1961. When  PNG gained  independence in 1975, the NGRU became the Institute for Applied Social and  Economic  Research (IASER), and in 1993 was officially recognised as the National  Research Institute. The  PNG NRI is an independent statutory authority established by an  Act of Parliament in 1988 and  confirmed by the IASER (Amendment) Act 1993 to conduct  independent policy research into  economic and social development issues affecting PNG.

PNGNRITaglineThe Act states that the functions of the PNG NRI are:“(a) the promotion of research into  Papua  New Guinea society and the economy”, and in particular “(b), the undertaking of  research into  social, political and economic problems of Papua New Guinea in order to  enable practical  solutions to such problems to be formulated.”

Vision and Mission

  • The Papua New Guinea National Research Institute (PNG NRI) is recognised among the  leading public policy think tanks in the Asia – Pacific region.
  • The Papua New Guinea National Research Institute will provide quality research which  contributes to evidence – based public policies and decision – making processes that  improve service delivery, leading to better quality of life for all Papua New Guineans.


PNG NRI is committed to inquiring, informing and influencing Papua New Guinea’s future through  conducting cutting-edge policy research, the facilitation of public dialogue, and influencing decision  making.

We inquire, to better understand problems.

We inform, to help others understand those problems.

We influence, advocating for effective public policies based on research and evidence.