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Monday 21 Aug 2017 | 07:19 | SYDNEY

Reader riposte: Our aid review blog

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7 January 2011 15:19

A reader has a question about my post of yesterday, in which I announced a new Lowy Institute blog, 'Interpreting the Aid Review', to be launched next week:

You say below that AusAID 'co-funds' the forum, and infer that submissions will be vetted. This does not appear to welcome what may be viewed by the co-funder as controversial or oppositional. Am I misinterpreting' I think a few word of clarification could be useful to address  censorship!

Thanks for writing in, and let me clarify. As with the Lowy Institute and The Interpreter, the editorial stance of 'Interpreting the Aid Review' will be independent, non-partisan and directed towards informing and deepening the debate about development and Australia's aid program.

Just as with The Interpreter, we do not want to host potentially defamatory or offensive material, and we would like to keep the quality of writing and debate at a high standard. We want to ensure that 'Interpreting the Aid Review' maintains the reputation that The Interpreter has developed over a long period of time. The Interpreter has always hosted robust debate on Australian foreign policy, including on the aid program. 'Interpreting the Aid Review' will be no different.

The stance taken by a blogger on any particular issue will not impact on their chance of getting their post published; we strongly encourage a wide variety of views. There is absolutely nothing wrong with pieces that are controversial or oppositional. In fact, often such pieces are advantageous in that they spark important debates.

If we don't receive submissions from a wide variety of individuals and organisations that contain different, interesting and well-expressed views on Australia's aid program, then we could suffer the worst fate possible in the blog world – being boring.

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