Foreign Assistance For Foreign Aid

2092 Words Jun 6th, 2016 9 Pages

A recent national poll published in The Guardian revealed that the average adult Australian respondent believes that over 13% of the Australian federal budget is spent on foreign aid overseas . When asked what percentage of the budget should go to foreign aid, the average response proposed around 10.34% . This was clearly a gross overestimate considering that foreign aid makes up only 0.9% of the federal budget . This result suggests that the average Australian, despite having an inaccurate sense of the realities, would still propose a reduction in the amount that Australia contributes to foreign aid.

This dilemma raises questions regarding the motivations and beliefs behind public attitudes towards foreign aid. Specifically, whether these beliefs are related to opinions towards the reliability and trustworthiness of foreign aid or the organisations involved in its coordination. Furthermore, how and why does support for foreign aid fluctuate over time and how does this relate to public knowledge of the issue?

Not only is there a moral dilemma surrounding the causes of the inaccuracies of public knowledge, but as Mark Purcell argues, foreign aid reduction will negatively impact Australia 's national interests in the future . The Lowy Institute finds that Australia 's decision to reduce its expenditure on foreign aid means it will relinquish its spot within the top ten Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) donors of foreign aid and…

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