Scholarship funds capitol experience in the United States

November 1, 2016

Dominic Rose

Dominic Rose attended the International Monetry Fund and World Bank Annual Meeting in Washington DC

A generous scholarship scheme has taken Murdoch masters student Dominic Rose to the heart of the world’s economic policymaking institutions.

As one of the winners of the Mal and Karyl Nairn Global Voices Scholarship for 2016, Dominic recently attended the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank Annual Meeting in Washington DC.

He met with activists, development experts, economists and politicians who are trying to solve local, national and global issues including how to rebuild trust in economic institutions.

“I’ve always been critical of the role the World Bank and IMF have played regarding some of their approaches to economic reform and the loans they make,” said Dominic, who has almost completed his Masters in Public Policy and Management at the Sir Walter Murdoch School of Public Policy and International Affairs.

“Being at the Annual Meetings hasn't really eased that criticism but it has given me a bit more context. Both institutions are full of good people who have the best intentions and I think it's always important to remember that.

“However, the meetings also illustrated that some in these big institutions are operating in their own little bubbles, inside multiple other bubbles. I think being self-aware of who you are, what you are doing and how you are being seen are very important especially for public institutions.

“Trust in our institutions has barely improved since the global financial crisis and a total lack of awareness of that will only make things worse.”

Dominic’s Global Voices experience began in July when he was announced as one of two recipients of the Sir Walter Murdoch School’s 2016 scholarships. The Global Voices organisation aims to bring Australia’s future leaders face-to-face with key Australian and international decision-makers, so Dominic was part of a delegation which met with politicians in Canberra in August.

The scheme also requires delegates to produce research into a pressing issue and Dominic recently completed a paper which investigates why and how citizens should be engaged in economic decision making.

“My paper makes the argument that increasing citizen engagement in the design of economic policy and the setting of economic agendas will lead to better outcomes, more trust in policy directions and policy that is better aligned with our values,” he said.

Being in Washington DC during the controversial Amercian presidential election race was also a highlight for Dominic, who combines his studies with working as a research officer for WA politician Amber-Jade Sanderson.

The timing of the World Bank IMF meetings just happened to coincide with the release of the ‘sex boasts’ recording of Donald Trump.

“When I first arrived, there was a palpable sense of dread that Trump could win, especially amongst those in DC,” said Dominic.

“Many were just exasperated about how he had gotten so far and no one could see how he had any support.

“Then the now infamous audio dropped and the second debate happened, and it was this simultaneous absolute disgust and sigh of relief amongst those people. The tide just turned and there was a real sense of optimism that everything will be okay.”

The other winner of the Mal and Karyl Nairn Global Voices Scholarship 2016 – Samuel Edge – will be attending COP 22, the United Nations international conference on climate change in Morocco in November.

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