Research Consultant, Cybersecurity ASEAN and Thailand Country Program

Location: Thailand
Program area: International Cooperation

*** This position will remain open until filled ***

The start date for this position is immediate; please apply as soon as possible.

The Asia Foundation, in cooperation with the Australian Government, is initiating a program to support enhanced regional security cooperation in Southeast Asia. The program will support ASEAN-led initiatives on maritime security, cybersecurity, women peace and security, and transnational crime. The program is likely to focus on cross-sectoral, civil-military cooperation, including support for future regional initiatives, dialogues, and meetings. In preparation for this program, The Asia Foundation will be conducting analysis and research on current trends in regional cooperation in these areas, with a focus on enhancing ASEAN’s role.

Under cybersecurity, The Asia Foundation will explore potential areas where our project could make a unique contribution. Given the sheer number of actors involved in this policy area, and the sensitivities, it will be essential to have a comprehensive picture of current regional initiatives and possible entry points for future assistance. The Foundation is still at the early stages of defining the program, in conversation with ASEAN stakeholders, Australian government, and experts in this field. The Foundation is also in need of technical advice in the area of cybersecurity cooperation.

The project team will explore the cross-cutting area of civil-military, interagency cooperation on cybersecurity and awareness. In preliminary discussions, it has become clear that the siloed approach to cybersecurity between various government agencies at the national level and among multiple ASEAN sectoral bodies, tends to lead to inadequate response and ineffective preparedness. There may be scope for using Australian (and/or Singaporean) examples of interagency cooperation as a way of bringing civilian and military officials together from across ASEAN to discuss methods for future cooperation at the national level. While effective regional cooperation may be several years down the road, there may be value in first focusing on national level coordination/cooperation as an entry point to eventual regional cooperation.

The Asia Foundation’s Thailand office is seeking an expert in cybersecurity to contribute to research efforts, and to serve as an expert advisor for the project. the Foundation plans to engage a consultant with extensive expertise in cybersecurity to help develop a refined program strategy aimed at strengthening interagency cooperation, as a way of bringing officials from multiple policy areas together across ASEAN to discuss methods for future cooperation at the regional and national levels.

JOB RESPONSIBILITIES

  1. Serve as an expert resource person on technical and policy aspects of cybersecurity in ASEAN, through participation in meetings, and responding to requests.
  2. Conduct an assessment of ASEAN bodies that focus on cybersecurity, focusing on the role and mandate of each sectoral body, and their regularly organized forums, track records, and impact. This short report will describe the nature of cybersecurity cooperation by various ASEAN and affiliated bodies, with a focus on their strengths and weaknesses, and potential areas for Australian/the Foundation engagement. The research should also focus on current practices in civil-military cooperation on cybersecurity, monitoring, and enforcement. In particular, the study will examine the structures and processes intended for coordination, and how well they work in reality. The assessment should include candid analysis and comparisons of ASEAN sectoral bodies and ongoing efforts. The assessment will also provide a general overview of other (i.e., non-ASEAN) initiatives that focus on cybersecurity cooperation in Southeast Asia. The output would be a one-time report, and briefings for the Foundation and other relevant counterparts.
  3. Maintain a watching brief on cybersecurity issues and developments within ASEAN institutionally and within individual ASEAN Member States. This would likely entail a regular written update analyzing recent developments within relevant ASEAN bodies involved in cybersecurity.
  4. Support in the design and implementation of future regional meetings and activities on cybersecurity, as needed.

QUALIFICATIONS

  • Demonstrable knowledge of cybersecurity technical elements (systems, codes, methods of attack, means of defense, etc).
  • Practical work experience in cybersecurity in the public and/or private sector(s); degree in relevant field.
  • Knowledge of the policy aspects of cybersecurity in one or more ASEAN countries.
  • Familiarity with the laws and norms governing cybersecurity, both globally and within ASEAN.
  • Ability to explain specialized and technical aspects of cybersecurity in a manner understandable to non-specialized audiences.
  • General knowledge and understanding of ASEAN as a regional body.
  • Proficiency in writing, reading, and speaking publicly in English.
  • Ability to travel occasionally within ASEAN, and possibly to Australia or the United States.

HOW TO APPLY

Interested applicants should submit a cover letter and CV by to benjamin.zawacki@asiafoundation.org with the position title listed in the subject line. The Asia Foundation is an equal opportunity employer, EOE/M/F/D/V. No phone calls, please.