Strengthening parliaments in the pacific region
2017-02-17T04:01:33Z (GMT) by
This qualitative study of five Pacific parliaments reports an investigation of the relationship between training and parliamentary performance. It draws on the theories from political science, adult education and training and human resources fields in an attempt to explain that relationship. The first part of the study identifies types of training programs available in the case parliaments. Then the study evaluates the impact of training on the performance of case MPs and their parliaments. It also conducts an across-case performance assessment. The results show that training programs provided to case parliaments are generally too didactic and have failed to produce a significant and positive impact on performance of case MPs and their parliaments. Parliamentary stakeholders interviewed in this study associate this failure with the manner in which training programs provided in the case parliaments are poorly designed and delivered. It is in this context that this study highlights the need for reforms and identifies approaches that could assist in reforming the way training programs for Pacific parliaments are designed, delivered and evaluated. In the case of Tonga, the need for training programs to be accompanied by other parliamentary strengthening techniques, such as embarking on relevant constitutional reforms, is examined. The thesis contributes to theory and practice by providing empirical evidence on the effectiveness or otherwise of previously published training models. Specifically, while it supports the applicability of the training model proposed in the adult education and training field, it raises questions on the compatibility of the training model suggested in the human resources field. The final chapter of the thesis provides donors and parliamentary practitioners with an education and training model that could be used to improve the effectiveness of parliaments in the Pacific region and beyond.