This paper compares the experience of two main attempts to accommodate secessionist pressures in Bougainville, a sub-national island unit of Papua New Guinea (PNG). In 1976 constitutionally based devolution was established on a largely uniform basis for Bougainville and PNG's 18 other provinces. A 2001 agreement to end a secessionist war has resulted in constitutionally guaranteed asymmetrical autonomy and a right to a deferred referendum on independence for Bougainville. The paper considers whether the Bougainville experience supports the view that autonomy creates pressure for secession and whether secessionist pressures might be accommodated by development of innovative economic policy and governance practices of the kind utilized by many other small non-sovereign island autonomies.
|Journal||The Round Table: The Commonwealth Journal of International Affairs|
|Publication status||Published - 2006|