In response to concerns about the country’s internal security challenges and in line with global trends, Papua New Guinea’s private security industry has grown substantially over the past few decades. However, relatively little is known about how the sector operates and its potential to help, or indeed exacerbate, the country’s complex security problems. Drawing on recent research, this seminar examines PNG's private security industry, situating it within the broader network of security actors comprising that country's plural security landscape. In so doing, we show that private security provision is not, as some suggest, discrete from other state (e.g. police) and community-based security providers. Indeed, private security organisations are dependent upon and contribute to a diverse network of actors and organisations that provide security across the county. While acknowledging the inherent limitations of private security provision, we consider the potential contribution that PNG’s flourishing private security industry might make to enhancing public security for all.
Sinclair Dinnen is an Associate Professor in the Department of Pacific Affairs. He has undertaken extensive criminological and law & justice research in PNG over many years.
Grant Walton is a Fellow at the Development Policy Centre and Chair of the Transnational Research Institute on Corruption and the author of Anti-Corruption and its Discontents: Local, National and International Perspectives on Corruption in Papua New Guinea.