Policy Ideas 2021-02-24T22:17:49+08:00
Policy IDEAS No 20: Malaysia’s Public-Private Partnerships in the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement: Alternatives to complete carve-out
Authors: Dr David Seth Jones

Date: June 2015

In the ongoing negotiations on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA), it is intended to incorporate public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) in the chapter on government procurement, thereby opening up mutual access to the PPP markets of the member states.

The New Face of KWAN: Proposals to improve Malaysia’s Natural Resource Fund
Authors: Sri Murniati

Date: March 2015

This paper discusses the Kumpulan Wang Amanah Negara (KWAN), Malaysia’s natural resource fund. Using good governance frameworks from research on Natural Resource Funds by the Natural Resource Governance Institute (NRGI) and Columbia Center for Sustainable Investment (CCSI), the paper evaluates the strengths and weaknesses of KWAN and suggests several improvements. Among them are revising the deposit and withdrawal rules to encourage saving and accountability, improving the oversight mechanism and public disclosure.

ICT in Classroom Learning: Exploring the Discrepancies Between Ideal Conditions and Current Malaysian Policy
Author: Jenny Gryzelius

Date:  February 2015

In 2011, the Ministry of Education launched the 1BestariNet programme – an ambitious initiative to equip all government schools in Malaysia with high-speed internet connectivity, Chromebooks and, a Virtual Learning Environment. This programme was also an attempt to bridge the urban-rural digital divide in the country.  The idea was to have ICT integrated as part of the teaching and learning processes in classrooms in order to enhance student outcomes. However, a closer look at the workings of the 1BestariNet programme unveils the shortcomings of a one-size-fits-all approach to planning and implementation of this initiative.  The main weaknesses identified in this paper are: lack of teacher training on how to integrate ICT into pedagogy, inadequate internet speeds and connectivity, and minimal involvement of school leadership when implementing ICT policies into their schools, all of which lead to minimal usage of ICT by teachers in classrooms. In light of these weaknesses this paper recommends that schools need to tailor make their own ICT training programmes, to determine what bandwidth is possible for their condition and what kind of devices would be most beneficial for their student body.

Setting up special needs centres: A focus on early intervention centres for the underprivileged
Author: Tamanna Patel

Date: Dec 2014

This paper looks at the gap in provision of early childhood care, education and therapy services for those with special needs with a specific focus on our experiences with the IDEAS Autism Centre (IAC), a full day child care centre for children with autism which includes education and therapy as well. The need for early intervention centres catering to parents from low-income households is not being adequately met by government or even private sector players. Based on the experiences of the IAC we believe that there are two main challenges to providing affordable early intervention services for low income households in Malaysia

Public Procurement in FTAs : The Challenges for Malaysia
Author: David Seth Jones

Date: December 2014

The paper examines opportunities and challenges for Malaysia if it accedes to a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) that has public procurement provisions. It examines the key provisions in the procurement chapter of an FTA, and the core principles that shape them, viz. non-discrimination, convergence, and transparency. The paper considers what suppliers must do to take full advantage of the opportunities offered by access to a much larger procurement market, and the consequent benefits to each partner country.

The benefits to Malaysia from the inclusion of procurement in an FTA are then identified, including the increased chances for Malaysian businesses to win contracts in foreign procurement markets, the resultant boost to exports, and improved procurement practices as a result of convergence and transparency.

School choice and school vouchers programmes: Why do they succeed and why do they fail – lessons for Malaysia?
Author: Jenny Gryzelius

Date: November 2014

This paper offers an exploration of the benefit of school choice and how school voucher programmes are a core feature of successfully bringing education choice to all segments of society. School vouchers are flexible arrangements for education funding, where the funding follows the student. By looking at three different school voucher programmes, the Milwaukee Parental Choice Programme in the US state of Wisconsin, and the nationwide voucher programmes in Sweden and the Netherlands, we seek to find a benchmark framework for what regulations and infrastructure need to be in place in order for a programme to be successfully implemented.

Policy IDEAS № 14: Dropping out of school in Malaysia: What we know and what needs to be done
Author: Tamanna Patel

Date: July 2014

In 2013, IDEAS conducted a survey on education, also known as Giving Voice to the Poor, to uncover the needs and aspirations of parents from low-income households around Malaysia. The survey covered over 1,200 respondents of which 150 respondents had at least one child who had dropped out of school. This paper takes a closer look at this group of 150 in an attempt to further understand issues that parents perceive as the reasons for a child dropping out.

Generating best value for taxpayers’ money: How to improve transparency and accountability in Malaysia’s public contracting system
Author: Sri Murniati

Date: July 2014

The Malaysian government has embarked on initiatives to improve transparency in government procurement since 2010. More information about procurement activities are now available for the public. However there is room for improvement. The paper proposes the following five steps to improve this initiative.