Indonesia, Australia and aid

Ashlee wrote a popular and widely circulated op-ed style piece for the Devpolicy Blog, after aid to Indonesia was implicated in the diplomatic fallout surrounding the executions of two Australians in Indonesia for drug trafficking.

perhaps this is where aid belongs in the relationship: a quiet current of goodwill under everything else. Thus to see aid to Indonesia being depicted as a tool for transnational arm-twisting seems at odds with its actual level of influence.Australia’s aid to Indonesia: a quiet good, until dragged into a fight

Read the full piece here. It was also republished on the website of the College of Asia and the Pacific at ANU.

Other examples of Ashlee’s coverage of aid, Indonesia, and the bilateral relationship:

Coverage of developments in Australian aid

Through the ‘In Brief’ section of the Devpolicy Blog, Ashlee regularly covers the latest developments in Australian aid and development policy.

Some examples:

Why is Timor-Leste trying to restrict the media?

This blog post analyses the proposed media law in Timor-Leste, which some commentators fear threatens press freedom, in the context of the wider challenges facing the Timor-Leste media.

In a context of increasing concern around corruption and public spending, the arguments of the government about the law being necessary for quality ring hollow, as does the reasoning that the law will enshrine journalism as a profession with protections.

This law will not solve the quality challenge facing the Timor press. New voices, increased competition and stronger demands from audiences are probably the best hopes, and they cannot be legislated into existence.

Instead, there is a real threat of increasing self-censorship by publications and individual journalists to mitigate their financial and legal risk in the face of the new sanctions that can be imposed under the law, and a real threat to the freedom and diversity of the Timor-Leste media.

Ashlee Betteridge

Read the full post on the Devpolicy Blog.

Combatting the family and sexual violence epidemic in Papua New Guinea: submission to parliamentary inquiry

Screen shot 2014-07-05 at 4.40.11 PMMinister for Foreign Affairs, The Hon Julie Bishop MP, asked the human rights subcommittee of the Joint Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade to inquire into and report on the human rights issues confronting women and girls in the Indian Ocean – Asia Pacific region.

Given the wide scope of the terms of reference for this inquiry, we focused on addressing the family and sexual violence epidemic in Papua New Guinea (PNG).

This submission was prepared by Ms Ashlee Betteridge, Research Officer at the Development Policy Centre, The Australian National University, and Dr Kamalini Lokuge, Fellow at the National Centre for Epidemiology and Population Health, The Australian National University.

Download full submission [pdf].

Read summary of recommendations.

Beyond human rights: ending child marriage as a development imperative

Human rights are enough reason alone to push for an end to early and forced marriage. Groups such as Human Rights Watch have been working on this issue for many years. Still, campaigners now cite a whole host of other reasons to end the practice, such as the improved healtheducation [pdf] and poverty alleviation outcomes when girls marry later. Child marriage is now squarely framed as a development issue.

Read the full post on child marriage on the Devpolicy Blog.

(Image from Too Young To Wed)

Hi, I’m Ashlee.

Welcome to my online portfolio.

I am an experienced writer, communicator, researcher and manager with a strong interest in international aid and development policy and the Asia-Pacific region.

I currently work as the Centre Manager at the Development Policy Centre at The Australian National University in Canberra.

Previously, I have worked with Plan International in Timor-Leste, the Center for International Forestry Research in Indonesia and Media Monitors, as well as in a variety of other freelance writing and editing roles.

As a journalist and editor, I worked at the Jakarta Globe from 2008-2010 and for News Ltd community newspapers and the Courier News group in Sydney from 2005-2008. My writing, analysis and reportage has also been published in many other places.

I finished a Master of Public Policy (Development Policy) at ANU in 2011, which included a semester at the American University School of International Service in Washington DC. I also have a Bachelor of Arts in Communications (Journalism) from the University of Technology, Sydney.

You can read more about my work and professional background, or you can just browse through my portfolio–expand the menu by clicking in the top left corner.

 

View my CV  Contact me

Australian aid and Cambodia’s troubled rail project

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has released a damning Compliance Panel Review (CPR) report of a controversial railway redevelopment project in Cambodia, which was supported by Australian aid.

Activists have long challenged the project’s forced resettlement of thousands of poor families who had made makeshift homes along disused railway tracks, alleging inadequate compensation, threats, harassment, inadequate facilities at resettlement sites and adverse impacts on livelihoods.

The CPR report [pdf], released on Friday, agreed with many of these concerns and found that the project was non-compliant with a number of ADB safeguards.

Read the full story on the Devpolicy Blog.