Social Media

Starbucks in Cambodia 

A Great Leap Forward? Mobile Internet for the Next Generation in Cambodia

October 19, 2016


This month, the global coffee giant, Starbucks, expanded its operations in Cambodia with a shiny new 7,000 square feet, two-story shop in the capital, Phnom Penh, just one year after entering the country—now one of the fastest growing economies in the world. This may lead some to ask: what is one of the largest Starbucks in Southeast Asia doing in… Read more


Facebook and Politics in Cambodia: Not All ‘Likes’ Are the Same

October 5, 2016


Following the surprising outcome to Cambodia’s 2013 general election, when the ruling Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) lost 22 seats at the National Assembly, Prime Minister Hun Sen pushed members of his government to take reform more seriously in order to secure popular support for the forthcoming 2017 commune and 2018 general elections. Not surpris… Read more

On April 30, In.CoDe hosted a day-long event in Jakarta that included a “speed date” involving over 140 participants as well as short panels and three-minute pitches by the top 10. 

Breaking Down Silos of ‘Innovation for Development’

May 4, 2016


Innovation is a tricky word to define. It has a whiff of excitement as well as – increasingly –inevitability, since technology is coloring our work and our lives. Development partners are adapting to explore the enormous potential of information and communication technologies. This, in turn, is introducing new actors, partnerships, approaches – suc… Read more

Supporters great VP candidate Leni Robredo. For the first time, the Commission on Elections partnered with print, broadcast, and online outlets to mount a series of presidential and VP debates ahead of the election. Photo/Leni Robredo Facebook 

Social Media: A Game Changer in Philippine Elections

April 27, 2016


Less than two weeks before May 9 presidential elections in the Philippines, it is still anyone’s ballgame and no one knows who will emerge as the frontrunner. With such a tightly contested race, it is bound to be a “last two minutes” kind of game, with each candidate scrambling to make the winning shot. How exactly will the candidates swing the vot… Read more


The Rise of Smart Phones in Cambodia Challenges Social Norms

December 16, 2015


According to a new study, nearly 100 percent of Cambodians now own a mobile phone. In what is perhaps an even more significant trend, as a subset of mobile phones, smart phone ownership grew by 41 percent in the past year.


New Economic and Social Landscape in Cambodia Attracts More Users to the Internet

January 21, 2015


In 2014, internet usage in Cambodia grew at a rate of 42.7 percent, according to a report released by the Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications last year. This sharp growth rate is being driven by an increasingly dominant youth demographic that aspires to connect to each other…


Youth Essential to Future Sustainable Development in Cambodia

September 3, 2014


Despite a remarkable economic growth average of 7.9 percent in Cambodia over the last decade, and a drop in the poverty rate from 53 percent in 2004) to 20.5 percent in 2011, experts at the first Enrich Forum on Sustainable Development 2014 held on August 23 in Phnom Penh raised important questions about what makes such growth sustainable.


After a Lively Election, What’s Next for Indonesia’s Mobilized Civil Society?

August 13, 2014


Just weeks after election results declared former Jakarta governor Joko Widodo (“Jokowi”) as Indonesia’s presidential front-runner, the president-elect’s team of volunteers announced that he would be crowdsourcing his cabinet. Through an online survey, anyone can choose…


Indonesian Election: Picking up the Pieces From a Toxic Campaign

July 9, 2014


After being inundated by months of campaigning, it now looks like it will be some time before Indonesian electors can come up for air and focus on repairing some of the damage of a divisive election season. Indonesia has witnessed the tightest and most polarized presidential election in the democratic era…


Media Campaign Ignites Push for Local Elections in Pakistan

July 9, 2014


There is much talk these days in Pakistan about democracy. Just over a year since national elections marked the first transition in the country’s history from one democratically elected federal government to another, some are already calling for new elections for reasons ranging from alleged malpractice at the 2013 polls…


Decoding India’s Historic Election Results

May 21, 2014


Nearly two months, 930,000 poll booths, 1.7 million voting machines, and over 500 million voters later, India’s marathon election concluded last Friday. Across the country, people were glued to their TVs as the results began to come in. By the evening, the outcome was clear – the Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP), in opposition for the last 10 years, had won a landslide victory. Capturing a staggering 284 out of 543 parliamentary seats, this is the first time in India’s independent history that a non-Congress party has won a clear majority in the lower house of parliament. On May 26, chief minister of the Indian state of Gujarat and BJP leader, Narendra Modi, will be sworn in as India’s 14th prime minister.


Rise of Social Media Transforms Philanthropy in China

April 30, 2014


In 2011, renowned investigative journalist Deng Fei went on a reporting trip to Guizhou province, a remote area in southwestern China, where he visited rural schools and spoke with students and teachers. He came away shocked that many schools did not provide lunch…


India’s Youth in the World’s Biggest Election

April 9, 2014


Election fever is at an all-time high in India as polling for the 16th general elections began on Monday. In sheer numbers, the election is the largest in the world, with 814 million people registered to vote for 543 representatives of the lower house of parliament at nearly a million polling stations between April 7 and May 12.


Draft Media Bill Threatens Press Freedom in Timor-Leste

March 19, 2014


Google “newest democracy” and you are likely to find the young island nation of Timor-Leste among the top hits. Do the same for “media censorship,” however, and the top results are of nations not exactly known for promoting democratic values such as Russia and China. However, right now, Timor-Leste’s national parliament…


Global Trends in Social Media: An Interview with Blogger Beth Kanter

April 10, 2013


In Asia editor Alma Freeman recently caught up with author and social media expert Beth Kanter after a talk held at The Asia Foundation’s headquarters, organized by the Asian Americans/Pacific Islanders in Philanthropy. Named one of the most influential women in technology by Fast Company


SBS Shakes up Voter Malaise in Korea

March 13, 2013


The inauguration ceremony of South Korea’s new president, Park Geun-hye, was held on February 25 with mixed feelings among Koreans about her election. She is the daughter of the controversial former president, Park Chung Hee…

The Asia Foundation Vietnam 

Despite Rapid Modernization in Vietnam, Survey Reveals Gender Bias Persists Among Youth

March 6, 2013


In Vietnam, a remarkable 95 percent of young people between the ages of 15 and 24 have access to the internet, with social networking growing so rapidly that Vietnam is Facebook’s fastest growing market in the world, with an estimated 8.5 million users, according to a We Are Social report. No doubt, rapid economic growth in the past two decades has contributed to tremendous social transformation in Vietnam, while global integration and the communications revolution have connected young Vietnamese to outside information and views like never before. Despite these trends, a brand new survey reveals that traditional gender roles remain deeply embedded in Vietnamese society and institutions, permeating work, home, and the public arena.


USAID Honors Asia Foundation’s Visualizing Afghanistan

February 27, 2013


USAID honored The Asia Foundation’s in-house film “Visualizing Afghanistan: A Survey of the Afghan People  last week at its Social Media Week 2013 event, “#Popcorn + International Development,” held at USAID Headquarters in Washington, D.C. “Visualizing Afghanistan” allows users to interact with survey data digitally, exploring by region, year, or… Read more


Jakarta Governor’s Race Goes Online, With Mixed Results for Indonesia’s Democracy

September 19, 2012


The residents of Jakarta, Indonesia’s chaotic, smog-choked capital, head to the polls on Thursday, September 20 to elect a new governor, rounding off what has been a surprisingly engaging, and at times messy, new chapter in the country’s maturing democracy. This is not the first time that Jakartans have voted in free elections, but it is the first time that social media has played a prominent role in the campaign. Indonesia has more than 43 million Facebook users, and Jakarta was recently named the most active Twitter city in the world.