Source: (2009) Contemporary PNG Studies: DWU Research Journal. 11: 115-128.

Restorative Justice is one of the buzzwords, which people use when talking about conflict resolution today. For many it is any process, which reduces conflicts and builds the quality of life (Dinnen 2000, p. 1). This is the broad meaning of restorative justice. The particular meaning is a special process developed in the later decades of the twentieth century in North America, New Zealand and Australia. It has now, in a very short time developed globally (Johnstone & Van Ness 2007, p. 113) Its broad goal is to transform the way contemporary societies view and respond to crime and related troublesome behaviour. More specifically, it seeks to replace our existing highly professional systems of punitive justice and control with community based reparative justice and moralising social control (Johnstone & Van Ness 2007, p. 5). Melanesia used a form of restorative justice for thousands of years until the introduction of the legal system of the colonial powers overtook it (Paliwala 1982 p. 191ff). In part, this was an attempt to replace payback and blood revenge with a ritual punishment on the offender, and restore the victim offender and community (Narokobi 1989, p. 50ff). Domestic violence against women and children is very common. The reader is invited to make a judgment on the suitability of restorative justice as an alternative to the present failed system. (Author's abstract).