Matthew Allen joined SSGM as a Fellow in November 2012. Prior to that he spent five years with the Resource Management in Asia-Pacific Program (RMAP), also in the ANU College of Asia and the Pacific. Matthew works at the interstices of geography, political science and anthropology. The unifying theme for his scholarly and policy work in the Western Pacific over the past 15 years has been the relationships between social, political and environmental change.
He has conducted long-term fieldwork in Vanuatu (1997) and Solomon Islands (2005-2006), and consultancy work in Papua New Guinea (including as an AusAID adviser in Eastern Highlands, 1999-2001) and Solomon Islands (intermittent since 2004). Matthew’s research interests include resource conflict and extractive resource industries, agrarian change and rural development, local-level governance, and state-society relations.
He has published several book chapters and articles stemming from this work, and is an author of Pillars and Shadows: Statebuilding as Peacebuilding in Solomon Islands (2010). His doctoral research on the conflict in Solomon Islands has resulted in his first book, Greed and Grievance: Ex-militants’ Perspectives on the Conflict in Solomon Islands, 1998-2003, (University of Hawaii Press, 2013).
In addition to his scholarly research, Matthew Co-Convenes the ANU’s Pacific Studies program and teaches the course Environment, Conflict and Development in the Western Pacific. He has undertaken research consultancies for AusAID, the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank, and contributes regularly to policy dialogues and briefing sessions for Australian public servants and volunteers.