Torres Strait Islanders and Papua New Guinea nationals living in the PNG–Australia borderland have relatively unrestricted access across the border for traditional activities under the legal framework of the Torres Strait Treaty. This makes this borderland region unique and yet prior research has typically focused on one side of the border only.

In this research, we are examining the policies in place in the PNG-Australia Borderland region and how these affect the lives of people living there. We are undertaking policy reviews of both Australian and PNG governments and the Australian Aid program and exploring new policy solutions and international innovations that are enhancing development in other borderlands.

We are also assessing the impact of funding frameworks on the wellbeing and mobility of the borderland population. There is an influence of both public and private finance expenditure in this region, particularly from the different levels of government in Australia. This, in turn, profoundly affects the wellbeing and mobility of the borderland population. Working closely with government and other organisations on both sides of the border, we are engaging stakeholders in important and complex discussions.


  • Determine how to better manage the flow of public finances and people across international borders


  • Academic Research Publications
  • Policy Briefs

Project team

  • Professor Mark Moran - Project leader
  • Professor Jennifer Corrin

Project details

Duration: January 2016–December 2018

Partners: UQ Faculty of Business, Economics and Law

Funding: ARC Discovery Project

Contact: Professor Mark Moran (