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International Development

 

Virtual Event – Insights from North Korean Refugee Entrepreneurs

Washington, DC, Thursday, February 4, 2021

Events Post

Seventy-five years after the onset of Asia’s Cold War, the world remains focused on the geopolitics of inter-Korean relations. Meanwhile, an emerging community of more than 33,000 refugees from North Korea currently live in South Korea; half aspire to become entrepreneurs. Despite the potential insight the refugee community could offer, there is in… Read more

 

Virtual Event – The Asia Foundation Taskforce Report: Urgent Issues in U.S.-Southeast Asian Relations

Washington, DC, Tuesday, February 2, 2021

Events Post

Southeast Asian leaders are accustomed to fluctuating levels of attention from the United States, but U.S. policy for Southeast Asia in the past four years might be described as more than a fluctuation. Changes in diplomatic direction and trade policy have led to a loss of U.S. focus and influence in the region, while heightened U.S.-China tensions… Read more

 

Asia Foundation’s Political Economy of Data Workshop at Global Digital Development Forum

May 15, 2020

News Post

The international development community is adapting to the new challenges and opportunities presented by a growing digital ecosystem and digital data. As part of the Global Digital Development Forum virtual conference on May 6, The Asia Foundation hosted the “Not a Drop to Drink: Towards a Political Economy of Data in Asia” workshop. The Global Dig… Read more

 

Growing It Alone: Images of Rural Timor-Leste

November 6, 2019

Blog Post

Just a little over two months ago, Timor-Leste celebrated the 20th anniversary of the referendum that brought the country its independence. The Asia Foundation’s governance director, Nicola Nixon, sends these reflections from a visit to a project site in the historic town of Maubisse, 70km from the capital. View to the hills outside Maubisse, Timor… Read more

 

Monitoring, Evaluation, and Learning in Adaptive Programming: Expanding the State of the Art

September 12, 2018

Blog Post

No matter how you slice it, implementing a project in the field of international development ultimately boils down to this: is the project helping the people it intends to reach, and how do you know? That translates directly into the essential nuts and bolts of project management and how to measure results. Are you achieving what you had hoped? How… Read more

Screenshot of Devex article 

Devex: What Role is There for Development Actors in Thailand?

February 5, 2018

Media Coverage Post

Devex features an in-depth interview with Thomas Parks, The Asia Foundation’s country representative in Thailand, on the role of international development actors in Thailand. Asia Foundation has worked in Thailand since 1954, adapting its program as the country rapidly developed: “Today, Thailand doesn’t need the support or kind of things we do in… Read more

 

Environmental and Social Impacts of Chinese Investment Overseas

June 1, 2016

Blog Post

On June 5, China marks its second national “Environment Day,” first established as part of the revised Environmental Protection Law in 2014. Along with the increased focus on environmental issues at home, more and more attention is being paid to the social and environmental impacts of China’s investments abroad. Outward foreign direct investment (O… Read more

 

Q&A: An Evolving Paradigm of South-South Cooperation

April 6, 2016

Blog Post

In March, The Asia Foundation’s director of International Development Cooperation program, Anthea Mulakala, joined more than 500 renowned scholars and experts from around the world for an international conference on South-South Cooperation (SSC) in New Delhi. In Asia editor Alma Freeman caught up with Mulakala to discuss how SSC is changi… Read more

 

2016 Australasian Aid Conference Convenes Leading Researchers on Global Development

January 27, 2016

Blog Post

It’s not often that Canberra can be described as an international crossroads. But on February 10-11 it will be a hotbed of discussion when researchers and practitioners from across Asia, the Pacific, and beyond converge on The Australian National University…

 

How Behavioral Insights Can Nudge Voter Turnout in Bangladesh

January 20, 2016

Blog Post

On Dec. 30, 2015, Bangladesh held its first-ever local-level elections in which political parties were able to nominate and field their own candidates for mayoral positions. Amid sporadic irregularities, millions lined up to vote in 234 municipalities across the country. While the election commission has yet to release official results…

 

Responding to Conflict in Asia: Why Good Data is Needed

December 16, 2015

Blog Post

The new set of post-2015 Sustainable Development Goals includes for the first time a target that specifically sets out to promote peaceful and inclusive societies, marking an increase in awareness that peace and security is critical for sustainable development.

 

Local Pathways to Disability-Inclusive Governance in Indonesia

December 16, 2015

Blog Post

“Nothing About Us Without Us” has become a familiar slogan used by the international disability movement and relies on the principle of full participation for all. However, in Indonesia, where people with disabilities (PWDs) still face enormous barriers…

 

Asia Foundation Hosts Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop for Innovation Talk

October 14, 2015

Blog Post

On October 9, Asia Foundation President Arnold hosted Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop, along with Australian Ambassador to the U.S. Kim Beazley, and former U.S. Ambassador to Australia Jeffrey Bleich at the iconic Fairmont Hotel in San Francisco.

 

China and the United States: A Conversation with David M. Lampton

July 29, 2015

Blog Post

David M. Lampton is Hyman Professor and Director of China Studies at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, where he also heads SAIS China, the school’s overall presence in the PRC. He joined The Asia Foundation’s Board of Trustees in 2006, and became Chairman of the Board in 2014.

 

To Be or Not To Be Part of AIIB

July 22, 2015

Blog Post

June 29, 2015, may have marked a turning point in multilateral development financing in the Asia-Pacific region. On that day, 50 countries signed the articles of agreement of the $50 billion, China-led Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB). While there is a lot of excitement about the potential of this new multilateral financing institution…

 

Karl Eikenberry: A Role for China?

July 8, 2015

Blog Post

Ambassador Karl Eikenberry is the Oksenberg-Rohlen Distinguished Fellow at the Asia Pacific Research Center at Stanford University, and a trustee of The Asia Foundation. He served as the U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan from 2009 to 2011, where he led the civilian surge directed by President Obama to set the conditions for transition to full Afghan sovereignty.

 

A Conversation with KOICA President Kim Young-mok

June 17, 2015

Blog Post

South Korea, a once-impoverished and war-torn nation that has grown to become an economic powerhouse and a provider of international assistance, is one of Asia’s great success stories, and The Asia Foundation has been a partner in that remarkable transformation since 1954.

 

American Foreign Policy and American Education

May 13, 2015

Blog Post

Two reports with ungainly titles and ostensibly nothing to do with each other were released by U.S. federal agencies last month. Together, these two reports should provoke a moment of reflection by anyone interested in the future of U.S. foreign policy.

 

Doing Development Differently: Report from Manila

April 29, 2015

Blog Post

On Monday and Tuesday in Manila, The Asia Foundation, along with Harvard University and the Overseas Development Institute (ODI), and with media partner DevEx to get the message out, hosted the second Doing Development Differently forum (DDD).

 

A Conversation with Dr. Rajiv Shah

April 29, 2015

Blog Post

Recently retired after five years at the helm of USAID, Rajiv Shah brought new energy and improved morale, and earned bipartisan Congressional support as director of the United States’ premier development agency. Shah emphasized measurement, transparency, and outcomes in development spending, and he championed the idea that development dollars should build local institutions within developing countries.

 

Post-2015 Development Agenda Needs Standalone Goal on Gender Equality

March 4, 2015

Blog Post

It has been more than a century since the world first celebrated March 8 as International Women’s Day. This year also marks the 20th anniversary of the Fourth World Conference on Women when representatives from 189 governments signed the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action…

 

A New Era of Development Finance

February 11, 2015

Blog Post

The global development landscape has changed dramatically in the last 15 years. In 2000, bilateral Development Assistance Committee (DAC) donors (UK, U.S., Japan, France) and multilateral institutions like the World Bank dominated the provision of aid. Today, the face of aid is increasingly Asian.

 

Asia’s Cities Poised to Lead in Climate Change Adaptation

January 28, 2015

Blog Post

With support from the Rockefeller Foundation’s 100 Resilient Cities challenge, a number of cities across Asia are beginning to confront the impacts of climate change. Cambodia’s capital, Phnom Penh, recently selected as one of Resilient Cities’ newest member cities and home to 1.5 million people, is one. Due to its low elevation and proximity to the Mekong River…

 

Can Mongolia’s Digital Revolution Help Meet Service Delivery Challenges?

January 28, 2015

Blog Post

Last month, Mongolia celebrated the 25th anniversary of its democratic revolution, a moment that would catapult the country’s transformation from a communist regime to a dynamic power in the region. But more recently – and more quietly – the country has also been undergoing a digital revolution.

 

Ten Reasons Not to Miss This Year’s Aid Conference

January 21, 2015

Blog Post

We held our first Australasian Aid Conference a year ago. In fact, we called it a workshop, because we thought it would be a rather small affair. Instead, we got 50 papers and 250 participants, and we’re doing it again this year, from February 12-13 at Australian National University…

 

How Practitioner-Academic Research Collaborations Can Improve Development Outcomes

January 14, 2015

Blog Post

“Theories of Change,” as Craig Valters argued recently on In Asia, offer development practitioners a potential way to grapple with the complexity of social change. But understanding how to get the most out of the tool is still a work in progress.

 

Mapping Mongolia’s Urban Ger Areas in Ulaanbaatar

December 17, 2014

Blog Post

Infrastructure in Mongolia’s sprawling capital Ulaanbaatar has not kept up with the rapid growth of unplanned ger areas within the city, leading to harsh conditions for newcomers. 1.5 million people now live in Ulaanbaatar, more than twice as many as the city was built to sustain. Since July 2012, The Asia Foundation has been implementing an urban services project…

 

Using Evidence to Improve Development Assistance

December 10, 2014

Blog Post

Development assistance is founded on countless theories about how foreign taxpayers’ money can be harnessed to instigate and catalyze economic and social development and provide humanitarian benefits abroad. Basic arguments for how positive change can be achieved…

 

Modern Conflict is Not What You Think

December 10, 2014

Blog Post

Research has transformed medicine, agriculture, and sanitation, and has helped lift many millions out of poverty. Most of the extremely poor people in the world now live in states suffering from conflict. Scholars have studied wars for millennia, but are usually concentrated on how to win them.

 

Academics, Practitioners, and Donors: Whose Evidence Counts and For What?

December 10, 2014

Blog Post

There is a difficult tension in the evidence-seeking agenda: on the one hand, donors seek short-term, project-related outcomes to support claims about their impact on a grand scale in a society; on the other hand, society-level impact does not seem measurable…

 

Can Theories of Change Help Us ‘Do Development Differently?’

December 10, 2014

Blog Post

Where next for debates and practice of Theories of Change? In my last blog on this topic, I argued that we need to be wary of Theories of Change simply becoming another corporate stick to beat people with: to prevent this, there is a considerable onus on likeminded donors…

 

Afghans Aren’t Giving Up

November 19, 2014

Blog Post

Afghanistan’s newly inaugurated president, Ashraf Ghani, appears to be off to a good start with the Afghan people. He has announced a series of new initiatives and adopted a hands-on style of governing, including surprise visits to military posts…

 

Former Korea Country Representative David Steinberg Reflects on A Nation in Transition

November 12, 2014

Blog Post

The Asia Foundation marked its 60th anniversary with a special day-long event and gala on November 6 in Seoul, Korea, hosted by former Foreign Minister Han Sung-Joo…

 

Trade, Private Sector, Soft and Hard Infrastructure to Top Beijing APEC Agenda

November 5, 2014

Blog Post

Wednesday marked the first day of the week-long Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Forum, hosted this year in Beijing. This year’s summit, themed “Shaping the Future through Asia-Pacific Partnership,” brings together ministerial leaders, CEOs of global corporations, and other leading voices in the private and public sectors to discuss the challenges facing Asian-Pacific economies. The week will culminate with the 22nd APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting on November 10-11. Heads of states from all 21 member economies, including U.S. President Obama, Chinese President Xi Jinping…

 

Myanmar’s National Museum Reveals Country’s Dynamic Past

October 29, 2014

Blog Post

Next month, Myanmar will host the ninth annual East Asia Summit, marking the conclusion of the country’s highly anticipated leadership role as 2014 ASEAN chair. Over the last three years, Myanmar has made strides in moving forward…

 

Q&A with Leading China Expert, Asia Foundation Trustee Elizabeth Economy

October 29, 2014

Blog Post

In Asia editor Alma Freeman recently sat down with new Asia Foundation trustee Elizabeth Economy, Council on Foreign Relations’ C.V. Starr Senior Fellow and director for Asia Studies, to discuss China’s environmental challenges, the country’s role as a donor, and her new book co-authored with Michael Levi…

 

Discussion Series Examines Myanmar’s Path to Decentralization

October 29, 2014

Blog Post

Since Myanmar’s President U Thein Sein took office in April 2011, the country has embarked on a dramatic set of reforms that have shifted the nation from one of the world’s most repressive regimes to this year’s Chair of ASEAN…

 

One Year After Bohol Earthquake, Partnerships Thrive Amid Rehabilitation Efforts

October 15, 2014

Blog Post

One year ago today, an earthquake reported to have the energy equivalent of 32 Hiroshima bombs struck Bohol and nearby provinces in south central Philippines. Generated from a fault in the northwestern sector of Bohol Island, the earthquake registered 7.2 on the Richter scale…

 

Mongolia’s Capital Leads Charge to Improve Transparency and Fight Corruption

October 8, 2014

Blog Post

Ahead of a major forum on transparency and corruption in Mongolia’s capital of Ulaanbaatar this week, Capital City Governor and Mayor Bat-Uul Erdene set the tone for the discussions: “In Mongolia, corruption is so common that it has become a kind of social norm.” …

 

A Conversation with UN Human Development Report Author Khalid Malik

October 8, 2014

Blog Post

Khalid Malik, lead author of the UNDP Human Development Report, sat down with The Asia Foundation’s Global Communications assistant director, Eelynn Sim, on a recent visit to the Foundation’s headquarters in San Francisco and on the heels of the release of the 2014 report.

 

Civil Society Organizations in Asia Press for More Open Environment

September 24, 2014

Blog Post

Indonesians have spoken out about a contentious bill to be voted on today that would eliminate direct elections for local mayors and district heads. Leading the charge against the bill, tabled just a month before President-elect Joko Widodo assumes office…

 

One Year After Siege, Zamboanga Critical to Success of Any Peace Agreement

September 10, 2014

Blog Post

On Sept. 9, 2013, Zamboanga City woke to an unfolding nightmare. Some 200 Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) fighters under the charismatic commander Ustadz Habier Malik had landed. They professed, despite the fact that they were fully armed, an intention merely to have a peaceful march in support of independence for Muslim-dominated areas in the southern Philippines. When government security forces halted their march, MNLF forces took hostages as a string of human shields, tying them together with rope. As a nightmare, this was a recurrence…

 

WEF Declares Philippines Most Improved Country in Global Competitiveness

September 10, 2014

Blog Post

The Filipino workforce has long been considered to be internationally competitive, exemplified in its impressive performance in the business process outsourcing and overseas labor markets. However, it is only recently that Philippine competitiveness has been recognized on a global scale.

 

Framing Human Trafficking to Address Commoditization of Human Beings

August 13, 2014

Blog Post

The U.S Government’s latest Trafficking In Persons (TIP) Report makes some critical observations in relation to how 187 countries are addressing human trafficking, and how this relates to the larger issues of labor migration and its manifestation into forced labor.

 

Subnational Conflict: New Approaches Needed

August 13, 2014

Blog Post

In last week’s In Asia, I examined how the rise of Asia in recent decades has been accompanied by a growth in deadly subnational conflicts (SNCs). These conflicts are occurring across the continent, including in middle-income and otherwise stable states. Democratization has not been a cure. Asia’s subnational conflicts last twice as long as those elsewhere in the world.

 

China’s Second White Paper on Foreign Aid Signals Key Shift in Aid Delivery Strategy

July 23, 2014

Blog Post

On July 10, 2014, China released its much-awaited white paper on foreign aid on foreign aid. In recent years, Chinese foreign aid has been a subject of scrutiny and even controversy. As the world’s fastest rising power, China has sharply expanded its foreign aid spending in both scale and scope over the last decade.

 

Conversation with Burmese Publisher, Library Advocate U Thant Thaw Kaung

July 9, 2014

Blog Post

Publisher U Thant Thaw Kaung, head of the Myanmar Book Aid and Preservation Foundation and the mobile library project under the Daw Khin Kyi Foundation, recently visited The Asia Foundation’s headquarters in San Francisco as part of a three-week study tour…

 

Integrating Disability in Pakistan’s Development Approach

June 11, 2014

Blog Post

Last month, over 1,000 students, journalists, civil society representatives, and activists walked from the Roshan Khan Complex to Jinnah Stadium in Pakistan’s capital, Islamabad, to raise awareness of exclusion of persons with disabilities in education. At the walk, UNESCO’s director…

 

5 Predictions for India’s Development Cooperation Under New Government

May 28, 2014

Blog Post

On Monday, Narendra Modi took the oath as India’s new prime minister, offering a new, more conservative government that has come to power after winning an electoral landslide. The new leadership has also raised questions about the implications for India’s foreign assistance program.

 

A Conversation with Tsagaan Puntsag, Chief of Staff of the President of Mongolia

May 21, 2014

Blog Post

As The Asia Foundation recently marked its 20th anniversary in Mongolia, Country Representative Meloney Lindberg sat down with Tsagaan Puntsag, chief of staff of the President of Mongolia and former Asia Foundation grantee in the Government Palace…

 

Photo Blog: Myanmar Parliamentary Study Tour to Korea

May 14, 2014

Blog Post

The first session of the Myanmar’s Parliament was held in January 2011, but the legislative body has been extraordinarily busy catching up on a long list of laws that need to be updated, revised, or established anew to meet the country’s democratic transition…

 

Picturing: The Promise of Libraries in Myanmar

April 2, 2014

Blog Post

Libraries and reading have a special place in Myanmar society. Yangon, the country’s largest city, is teeming with book vendors and libraries. The American Center and British Council libraries were venerated sources of up-to-date publications…

 

New Study Examines Policing in Timor-Leste

April 2, 2014

Blog Post

The Asia Foundation just released a new study that examines key features of police development in Asia’s youngest country, Timor-Leste. As part of the Overseas Development Institute’s global “Securing Communities” project, the case study reveals a unique process of development of community policing, influenced by historical legacies of occupation a… Read more

 

How Politics Can Outmaneuver Reform in the Philippines

March 12, 2014

Blog Post

Over the past two years, the Philippines has achieved the distinction of being the fastest growing of the ASEAN-6 economies with growth rates of 6.8 percent in 2012 and 7.2 percent in 2013. The official poverty rate in the Philippines was 27.9 percent in 2012 and 28.8 percent in 2006; levels which were interpreted this way…

 

The Rise of Asia’s Southern Providers in East Asia

February 12, 2014

Blog Post

Today, there’s no doubt that the global aid landscape is changing. Aid from traditional donors to Asia is declining, with total global aid falling by 6 percent since its high point in 2010. Meanwhile, the volume of development cooperation from non-OECD Development Assistance Committee (DAC) members is increasing.

 

Two Months After Yolanda: Lessons from the Bunkhouse Controversy

January 15, 2014

Blog Post

The recent controversy about temporary shelters – or bunkhouses – for victims in Yolanda-hit areas offers some lessons not only in emergency response but also in reconstruction efforts. These are not new lessons…

 

Corporate Philanthropy in Vietnam: Promise Among Challenges

December 18, 2013

Blog Post

Giving in Vietnam is strongly rooted in its culture and tradition. Tax breaks for rich people who helped the poor were implemented as far back as the 15th century. Today, the public discourse is full of references to community spirit and the philanthropic impulses of Vietnamese. In addition to quoting the musketeers line, “One for all and all for one,” in his address…

 

Research Effectiveness: The Case of the Mindanao Conflict

December 18, 2013

Blog Post

Research is most useful for development practitioners when it is embedded in the entire endeavor, directing and directed by actions and reflections throughout implementation, rather than being something done initially to design a project and at the end to evaluate it.

 

Making the Evidence Agenda in Development More Plausible

December 18, 2013

Blog Post

“What is the evidence?” This must be the most common question in development programming and policy these days. Donors are pressing practitioners to present evidence that their programming approaches are working – themselves under pressure to show measurable results and the evidence for those.

 

Getting Academics and Aid Workers to Work Together

December 11, 2013

Blog Post

Aid workers and academics would seem natural collaborators. Development studies courses are common and it is routine to find academics who oscillate between the academy and the field as aid workers. In turn, the aid world often calls upon academics to provide expert advice and looks to their literature for guidance.

 

The Yolanda Tragedy: 7 Lessons in Early Emergency Response

November 20, 2013

Blog Post

Last month, when the 7.2 earthquake struck the Philippine provinces of Cebu and Bohol, I was in the southern city of Zamboanga facilitating dialogues between Muslim and Christian leaders to alleviate possible religious tension following the September siege that displaced thousands and threatened the good relationship of the city’s two faith communities. It was the furthest thing from my mind that an even more devastating disaster would happen just a month later, right in Tacloban City, where I had left my wife and kids in safety (or so I thought) and in the province of Eastern Samar where I grew up playing in the gentle edges of the mighty Pacific Ocean.

 

Despite Double Disasters, Bohol’s Local Response Strong

November 20, 2013

Blog Post

Less than one month after a magnitude 7.2 earthquake destroyed areas of Bohol province in the Central Visayas region of the Philippines, Typhoon Yolanda (international name Haiyan), said to be one of the most powerful storms ever to hit land…

 

Devastation in the Philippines

November 13, 2013

Blog Post

On November 8, Typhoon Yolanda (known internationally as Haiyan) struck central Philippines, particularly the eastern coasts of the islands of Leyte and Samar, carrying winds close to 200 mph and causing a massive storm surge that flattened entire towns and devastated communities in its wake. Yolanda is said to be one of the most powerful storms ever to hit land. The official death toll stands at more than 2,300, but local officials warn that number could increase significantly. An estimated 8 million people have been affected and 600,000 are displaced. Most visible is the plight of residents of coastal Tacloban – Leyte’s capital city and regional economic hub – who are struggling to find the most basic of services: food, water, shelter, and electricity.

 

Relocation a Boon for Bangladeshi Leather Sector

November 13, 2013

Blog Post

The government of Bangladesh and the two primary Bangladeshi leather industry trade associations reached a historical agreement last month to transfer the leather industry from central Dhaka to Savar, a new, environmentally compliant industrial zone on the outskirts of the city. According to the president of the Bangladesh Tanners Association, the new location could boost the industry’s export revenues from $1-5 billion. Economists predict that if the leather industry continues its impressive growth, it may even challenge the ready-made garment sector as one of Bangladesh’s most valuable exports.

 

Community-Driven Development: A New Deal for Communities in the Asia-Pacific

November 13, 2013

Blog Post

The Asia Foundation, in partnership with Australian Aid, World Bank, and SMERU, a leading Indonesian research institute, recently hosted a four-day regional conference…

 

What Does Community-Driven Development Deliver? Lessons from a Balinese Village

November 13, 2013

Blog Post

Early this month, I boarded a bus to visit the Balinese village of Sobangan to see in action the impact from a decade of Community-Driven Development (CDD), an approach that delivers public funds directly to the village level and allows citizens to determine priorities for social services and economic development.

 

The Asia Foundation Co-Hosts Regional Conference on Community-Driven Development

October 30, 2013

Blog Post

On Oct. 28, The Asia Foundation, Australian Aid, World Bank and SMERU hosted a 4-day conference in Indonesia on “Sustaining and Mainstreaming Community-Driven Development Programs (CDD).” In contrast to standard development approaches, CDD programs provide funds directly to the village level, allowing communities to decide for themselves what devel… Read more

 

New Texts Boost Timor-Leste’s Legal Capacity

October 30, 2013

Blog Post

Justin Bieber may not have visited Asia’s newest state, Timor-Leste, yet, but as six Stanford law students found out earlier this year, his popularity has preceded him at the National University of Timor-Leste (UNTL). The Stanford students were visiting UNTL with the Timor-Leste Legal Education Project (TLLEP), a partnership among The Asia Foundation…

 

Civil Society Leaders Gather in Seoul for Inaugural Asia Democracy Network Assembly

October 30, 2013

Blog Post

As civil society in Asia has made significant progress over the past several decades, the need for a forum that brings together the major players to focus on key challenges to inclusive and participatory democracy has become increasingly important.

 

Mapping Ulaanbaatar’s Ger Districts

October 23, 2013

Blog Post

Mongolia is now one of the world’s fastest growing economies, and nowhere is this growth more evident than the bustling and energetic capital, Ulaanbaatar. Expensive high rises, luxury stores, and modern apartment buildings are common in this city of 1.5 million; tower cranes dot the rising skyline, harbingers of even more cutting-edge development projects to come. But in the shadows of the cranes and high rises, are the city’s ger districts, where more than half of the capital’s residents live without access to basic public services like water, sewage systems, and central heating.

 

A Conversation with Capital City Governor and Ulaanbaatar Mayor Bat-Uul Erdene

October 23, 2013

Blog Post

On Friday, the Ulaanbaatar city municipality will celebrate Ulaanbaatar City Day to highlight the various works being undertaken to improve the capital of Mongolia, home to more than 50 percent of the population.

 

Back from APEC, Pres. David Arnold Discusses Private Sector & Sustainable Development

October 16, 2013

Blog Post

Last week, Asia Foundation President David Arnold joined over 1,200 CEOs and 10 heads of member economies at the annual APEC CEO Summit in Indonesia to discuss inclusive and sustainable development, with a special focus on the importance of women in Asia’s growth trajectory.

 

Photo Blog: Zamboanga City Begins Recovery Through Inter-Faith Efforts

October 16, 2013

Blog Post

October 15 was a national holiday in the Philippines to celebrate Eid’l Adha, the Muslim festival of the sacrifice. The day was also tragically marked by an earthquake in central Philippines, one consequence of which was considerable damage to historic churches…

 

Obama’s Asia Pivot on Shaky Ground

October 9, 2013

Blog Post

Asia-Pacific leaders gather in Brunei this week for the 8th East Asia Summit (EAS) and the 23rd ASEAN Summit, on the heels of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in Bali on Monday. While a number of critical issues were set to be discussed, President Obama’s last minute cancellation…

 

Marking 20 Years in Mongolia

October 9, 2013

Blog Post

This week in Ulaanbaatar, celebrations are in full swing to mark The Asia Foundation’s 20th anniversary in Mongolia. In 1993, we opened our resident office in the building that is fondly remembered as the “Log Cabin,” becoming one of the first international nongovernmental organizations…

 

The Contested Corners of Asia: Subnational Conflict and International Development Assistance

October 7, 2013

Publication

Subnational conflict is the most widespread, enduring, and deadly form of conflict in Asia. Over the past 20 years (1992-2012), there have been 26 subnational conflicts in South and Southeast Asia, affecting half of the countries in this region. Concerned about foreign interference, national governments limit external access to conflict areas by jo… Read more

 

In Myanmar, an Evolving Discourse on Decentralization

October 2, 2013

Blog Post

With a much-heralded democratic transition underway in Myanmar, the future holds the potential for impressive gains but also significant challenges. Among the latter, decentralization and state-local relations as mandated by the 2008 constitution are emerging as a critical issue…

 

First-Ever Research Tool for Measuring Gender Equality in Environmental Governance

October 2, 2013

Blog Post

The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Global Gender Office enjoys worldwide recognition for the extensive work it has carried out over the past 12 years addressing gender equality issues within the environmental sector.

 

Photo Blog: Relief Efforts in Zamboanga City

October 2, 2013

Blog Post

The ongoing conflict in Zamboanga City, on the southern Philippine island of Mindanao, which started on Sept. 9, 2013, has displaced 110,687 people, damaged more than 10,000 homes, and left more than 200 dead, among them soldiers, rebels, and civilians…

 

Engaging China in International Development Cooperation

August 21, 2013

Blog Post

As the world’s fastest rising power, China has sharply expanded its foreign aid spending in both scale and scope over the last decade. As China emerges as a major player in the field of foreign aid, longstanding “established” Western donors have begun to seize the opportunity to engage China in development cooperation in an effort to form new joint-venture programs and facilitate mutual understanding. Such cooperation and linking of resources could play a significant role in improving aid quality and effectiveness throughout the developing world. It could also help both China and established Western donors learn from each other in the rapidly evolving aid landscape.

 

A Conversation with U.S. Ambassador to Vietnam David Shear

July 10, 2013

Blog Post

In June, The Asia Foundation hosted U.S. Ambassador to Vietnam, David B. Shear, at its headquarters in San Francisco. In Asia editor Alma Freeman sat down with him to discuss expanding economic and diplomatic ties, negotiating the Trans-Pacific Partnership, progress in human rights, and Vietnam’s lively but circumscribed social media landscape.

 

Rapid Pursuit of GDP Growth in Lower Mekong Region Threatens Environment

June 26, 2013

Blog Post

Next week, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry will join leaders from the Lower Mekong Initiative (LMI) partner countries – Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, and Vietnam – for the sixth LMI Ministerial Meeting in Brunei, Darussalam. The meeting will be held on the margins of the ASEAN Regional Forum Ministerial Meeting…

 

New Round of Talks Gives Hope for Peace in Thailand’s South

June 19, 2013

Blog Post

After nearly a decade of deadly conflict in Thailand’s Deep South, Thai officials and insurgent groups met in Kuala Lumpur last week for the third round of peace talks in hopes of finding common ground to end the violence. While both sides agreed to reduce violence during the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan, which starts next month, few concrete solutions emerged. The Thai government has been requesting a cessation or reduction of violence since discussions began on March 28, 2013, but judging from the ongoing violence on the ground, and the apparent inability by the self-proclaimed separatist leaders to influence the militants on the ground, this upcoming Ramadan is likely to be a significant test for the Barisan Revolusi Nacional (BRN) separatist movement.

 

Confidence in Mindanao Peace Process Fragile

June 19, 2013

Blog Post

While the peace process in Mindanao has made tremendous progress over the past year, including the signing of a Framework Agreement on the Bangsamoro, there is still a long way to go. The current stage can be described as a “fragile transition,” where there is significant progress in the negotiation of a final settlement to the conflict…

 

Myanmar’s Speaker of the Lower House Shwe Mann: Economic Reforms Needed Ahead of 2015 Election

June 19, 2013

Blog Post

On June 10, Myanmar’s speaker of the Lower House of Parliament, Thura U Shwe Mann, during the first official visit to the U.S. by Myanmar’s Parliament since the reform process began two years ago, confirmed he would run for president in 2015. Shwe Mann, a former general and widely considered a “key architect” of recent reforms…

 

The Right Kind of Development: Building Peace in Thailand and Beyond

June 12, 2013

Blog Post

The Asia Foundation’s new study, “The Contested Corners of Asia,” highlights the growing importance of conflicts that occur within rather than between countries. In recent years, subnational conflicts between national governments and local rebel groups…

 

Lessons from Aceh: Early Focus on Institutions Critical to Cementing Peace

June 12, 2013

Blog Post

Aceh – Indonesia’s western-most province which endured three decades of a secessionist civil war that left at least 15,000 dead – is frequently cited as the best recent example in Asia of a successful peace process. However, eight years after the Helsinki accord brought an end to the conflict, new forms of localized violence are now emerging.

 

Data Visualization Site Examines Asia’s Subnational Conflicts

June 12, 2013

Blog Post

In conjunction with The Asia Foundation’s new study, “The Contested Corners of Asia: Subnational Conflict and International Development Assistance,” a just launched data visualization website provides further insight into one of the most pressing challenges in Asia today.

 

A Conversation with Lotus Circle Founding Member Masako Shinn

June 5, 2013

Blog Post

The Asia Foundation’s third annual Lotus Leadership Awards luncheon takes place this week on June 6 at New York’s Boathouse in Central Park, and In Asia sat down with Lotus Circle founding member and advisor, Masako Shinn, who joined the Foundation’s board in 2012

 

Nandita Baruah Examines Realities & New Approaches to Combating Human Trafficking

June 5, 2013

Blog Post

Ahead of The Asia Foundation’s third annual Lotus Leadership Awards luncheon on June 6 in New York, which highlights work to end human trafficking in Asia, In Asia editor Alma Freeman caught up with counter-trafficking expert Nandita Baruah from her office in Nepal.

 

A New Aid Order in the Asian Century

May 29, 2013

Blog Post

The future of “traditional” aid is increasingly and rather suddenly in question. Why? Several reasons: rapid transformations in the global economic and political order, the growth and diversification of private financial flows to developing countries…

 

Luce Scholars Program Marks 40 Years

May 29, 2013

Blog Post

Since its launch in 1974, The Asia Foundation has had the honor of administering in Asia the signature program of the Henry R. Luce Foundation, the Luce Scholars program, a major effort to provide an awareness of Asia among future leaders in American society.

 

New Study to Reveal Impact of Foreign Aid on Asia’s Enduring Subnational Conflicts

May 29, 2013

Blog Post

On June 3 in Bangkok, The Asia Foundation will release a major new study, “The Contested Corners of Asia,” that examines subnational conflict, now the most deadly, widespread, and enduring form of violent conflict in Asia.

 

In 21st Century Asia, Civil Society Blossoms

May 22, 2013

Blog Post

With ongoing tensions in Northeast Asia – North Korea threatening war, pervasive struggles over island territory, and disputes over history and trade – there is a temptation to grow impatient with dialogue and diplomacy. But for more than 60 years, economic growth, peace, and stability in this region…

 

Cambodia’s Small Businesses Serve as Backbone of Sustainable Economy

May 15, 2013

Blog Post

Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen announced in late March that the nation was on target to move from the status of a low-income to a lower-middle-income nation by the end of 2013, ranking it the 15th country that obtained high economic growth in the world in the last 10 years.

 

Asia Foundation Signs MOU with Government of Myanmar

May 15, 2013

Blog Post

Last week in Nay Pyi Taw, H.E. U Zin Yaw, Myanmar’s Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, and Asia Foundation President David Arnold signed an MOU marking the Foundation’s expansion of programs to support Myanmar’s democratic transition and plans to re-establish a resident office in the country. The Foundation also announced the appointment of Dr. Ki… Read more

 

Muslim Mindanao’s Cadre of New Leaders and Managers

May 1, 2013

Blog Post

When we hear about the current slow pace of negotiations between the government of the Philippines and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, we can lose sight of the many concrete achievements made over the years. As peacemakers on both sides of the negotiating table try to learn lessons from past peace efforts…

 

7th Ministerial Conference of the Community of Democracies Showcases Mongolia’s Democratic Transition

May 1, 2013

Blog Post

Against the background of Mongolia’s famous blue sky, around 1,215 delegates from 104 countries gathered in Ulaanbaatar to participate in the 7th Ministerial Conference of the Community of Democracies (CD) from April 27- 29, 2013, organized under Mongolia’s Presidency of the CD, which started in July 2011.

 

Cambodia Must Up its Game in Rice Exports

May 1, 2013

Blog Post

Cambodia announced two major bilateral trade agreements last month, with the Philippines and Thailand, that are expected to further expand the country’s rice export sector. Over the last few years, Cambodia has emerged as a major rice exporter in the region, due in large part to the Royal Government of Cambodia’s recent expansion of its agricultural sector.

 

Korea Leads Way for Asia’s Green Growth

April 24, 2013

Blog Post

The conference in the Asian Approaches to Development Cooperation dialogue series convened in Seoul, South Korea, this month, and brought together development experts and senior government officials to discuss climate change mitigation, green growth, and adapting to and building resilience to natural disasters. This dialogue series, co-organized by The Asia Foundation and the Korea Development Institute (KDI), brings together both “emerging” and “traditional” development actors to discuss international development challenges. This year’s focus on effective cooperation for deterring the impacts of climate change was launched in Seoul, fittingly, as South Korea is playing a leading role in low-carbon development in the Asia-Pacific region.

 

Climate Change Games Crystalize Complexities

April 24, 2013

Blog Post

People were standing up and sitting down, intense negotiations were underway, funding decisions were being made, and a lot of commotion was coming from a crowd of over 300 policymakers, scientists, and practitioners from over 40 countries. We are gathered in Dhaka, Bangladesh…

 

A Platform for Asian Emerging Donors

April 24, 2013

Blog Post

As discussions on the federal budget and sequestration continue here in Washington, D.C., The Asia Foundation’s Washington office sponsored an event to discuss how various Asian nations are approaching and, in some cases, expanding their development assistance programs.

 

Elevating Education for Cambodia’s Growth

April 24, 2013

Blog Post

Yesterday marked the 18th World Book and Copyright Day, first introduced by UNESCO in 1995, in celebration of books, authors, and the joys of reading. It’s also an occasion to reflect on the importance of education, especially as a driver of poverty reduction.

 

Dignity in International Relations

April 24, 2013

Blog Post

Recent vituperative comments by the North Korean regime can normally be dismissed as the ravings of a state that either misinterprets their negative external impact, or as rhetoric that is intended for consumption by a remarkably unsophisticated internal audience.

 

A Green Model for Mine Reclamation in Mongolia

April 17, 2013

Blog Post

Mongolia sits on some of the world’s largest mineral deposits, primarily coal and copper, as well as rare earth and precious metals. While the country’s abundant resources have driven Mongolia to the top of Asia’s economic performers, the rapid growth has not happened without serious concern…

 

Remembering Adrian Leftwich: Professor and Intellectual Leader on International Development

April 17, 2013

Blog Post

The Asia Foundation honors the memory of Dr. Adrian Leftwich, highly regarded political scientist, activist, and international development expert, who passed away early this month. Adrian was the research director of the Developmental Leadership Program (DLP)…

 

New Asian Approaches to Development Cooperation

April 17, 2013

Blog Post

In recent years, Asian countries have emerged as game changers in the development assistance arena, challenging traditional notions of aid, reshaping global aid architecture, and placing new challenges on the global development agenda.

 

Asian Approaches to Development Cooperation Dialogue Series in Seoul

April 17, 2013

Blog Post

With a special focus on climate change, The Asia Foundation and the Korea Development Institute last week convened 25 government officials, policy specialists, and development experts from more than 10 countries in Seoul for the 8th meeting of the Asian Approaches to Development Cooperation (AADC) dialogue series. Stay tuned for analysis in next we… Read more

 

Lessons from India’s Pop-Up Megacity: The Kumbh Mela

April 10, 2013

Blog Post

On February 10, 36 people were killed in a stampede at the Allahabad railway station. Allahabad, located in the north Indian state of Uttar Pradesh, is the second-oldest city in India and plays a central role in the Hindu scriptures. Most of those caught in the stampede were devotees traveling to attend the sacred Maha Kumbh Mela, a massive Hindu religious festival held every 12th year in Allahabad. While planning to travel to the festival ourselves, news of the stampede was concerning. Taking in the reports from our offices in Delhi, we became increasingly skeptical that the authorities could pull off an event of the Kumbh’s magnitude. We were surprised by what we found.

 

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

April 10, 2013

Blog Post

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

 

How an Electronic Database is Dramatically Reforming Indonesia’s Prisons

April 3, 2013

Blog Post

Kiki, a registrations clerk at Cipinang Prison in Jakarta, glanced at his pile of paperwork with a degree of resignation. It was April 2009, and he was responding to three summons letters from the prosecutor’s office and the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) for 92 inmates to appear in court the next day.

 

Building a Technology Future in Burma/Myanmar

April 3, 2013

Blog Post

Driving from the airport down the gridlocked streets of Yangon – with people of all ages going about their business in patterned longyis – it’s hard not to notice the dozens of billboards jutting out at eye level advertising web services and brand name mobile devices. Though mobile and internet penetration rates are still very low (no higher than four and two percent, respectively, of Burma’s 50 million people), senior leadership in the government, NGOs, and the private sector is increasingly focused on improving the country’s existing technology infrastructure. These collective efforts to loosen censorship laws, extend telecommunications licenses to foreign operators, and develop new legal frameworks for eGovernment and information and communications technology (ICT) are likely to not only ramp up mobile penetration rates, but also bring greater access to information for Burma’s citizens.

 

Despite Odds, Mongolians Hopeful for a Less Corrupt Society

April 3, 2013

Blog Post

Recent reforms in legislation and institutions have helped demonstrate Mongolia’s strong commitment to combating corruption, and the effects are noticeable in some areas: in Transparency International’s 2012 Corruption Perceptions Index, Mongolia’s ranking improved from 120 to 94, up 26 places from 2011.

 

The Next Asian Tiger? A Conversation with U.S. Amb. to Bangladesh Dan Mozena

March 27, 2013

Blog Post

The Asia Foundation recently hosted U.S. Ambassador to Bangladesh, Dan W. Mozena, for an informal lunch discussion at its San Francisco headquarters, followed by a public event organized by the Foundation’s Washington, D.C., office.

 

As Sri Lanka’s Economy Grows, Commercial Disputes Heat Up

March 27, 2013

Blog Post

Despite decades of internal conflict, Sri Lanka now boasts high-income growth and a notable reduction in human development index shortfall, according to the just-released

 

Inaugural LankaCorps Alumni Share Experiences with Sri Lankan Diaspora

March 27, 2013

Blog Post

In July 2012, five strangers – Ann Selvadurai, Sabina Martyn, Seshma Kumararatne, Sahani Chandraratna, and Sivashankar Krishnakumar – boarded a plane to Sri Lanka’s capital, Colombo, under the auspices of a unique Asia Foundation fellowship program.

 

Gender-Based Violence Still Presents Greatest Need in Nepal

March 27, 2013

Blog Post

Gender-based violence (GBV) affects nearly half of women in Nepal, according to a recent survey by The Asia Foundation. The results of the survey, included in a recent field report from Asia Foundation program officer and Give2Asia’s field advisor to Nepal, Diana Fernandez, showed that 48 percent of women…

Small island in the ocean 

Dispatch from Micronesia: Mitigating Water Insecurity through Disaster Preparedness

March 20, 2013

Blog Post

My colleague Lisa Hook and I are currently in the Pacific Island countries of the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) and the Republic of the Marshall Islands (RMI), two small island states that face some of the highest risks of natural disasters and climate change.

 

Study: Community-Based Development in Conflict Areas of the Philippines

March 20, 2013

Blog Post

Over the past decade, community-based development (CBD) programs have become among the most common and widely accepted methods for providing assistance to conflict-affected regions. To help inform future programs and stimulate new thinking and dialogue…

 

Q&A: Douglas Bereuter Examines Global Food Security & Sustainability

March 13, 2013

Blog Post

As the world population approaches 9 billion by 2050 and demand for food rises, tackling food security and sustainability is one of the most critical challenges. In Asia editor Alma Freeman spoke with former Asia Foundation president and member of Congress, Douglas Bereuter…

 

Cambodia’s Women Local Leaders Take Charge

March 6, 2013

Blog Post

This year, the Cambodian Ministry of Women’s Affairs’ 5-year strategic plan, known as the Neary Rattanak III, which aims to ensure gender equality for women, comes to a close. While serious obstacles remain, women have made great strides in Cambodia, particularly in the area of political participation.

 

Forensic Science Enhances Access to Justice and Human Rights Protection in Thailand

February 27, 2013

Blog Post

Among the array of international television series aired by cable networks in Thailand, “CSI,” “Bones,” and other dramas that highlight the work of forensic pathologists are especially popular. While Thai audiences are exposed to the dramatized investigative techniques applied by forensic specialists working in cooperation with law enforcement agencies…

 

USAID Honors Asia Foundation’s Visualizing Afghanistan

February 27, 2013

Blog Post

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

 

Civil Society More Ready Than Ever to Play Role in Forging Peace in Mindanao

February 20, 2013

Blog Post

In a study I wrote a number of years ago, I quoted a peace activist in Mindanao lamenting the lack of success in ending the war between the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF). He was speaking in the wake of President Estrada’s 2000 “all-out war” offensive that overran fixed positions of the MILF.

 

New Report Reveals Distinct Barriers to Women in Business in APEC Developing Economies

February 20, 2013

Blog Post

Women make up more than half of the population in Asia, and the UN estimates that the Asia-Pacific economy would earn an additional $89 billion annually if women were able to achieve their full economic potential in these countries. To examine this disparity, The Asia Foundation, in partnership with the U.S. Department of State…

 

A Conversation with Author and Governance Expert Clare Lockhart

February 13, 2013

Blog Post

New Asia Foundation trustee Clare Lockhart, author of the acclaimed book, Fixing Failed States: A Framework for Rebuilding a Fractured World and co-founder (with Dr. Ashraf Ghani) of the Institute for State Effectiveness (ISE), spoke with In Asia editor Alma Freeman on state effectiveness, Afghanistan’s unsung progress, engaging youth for change, and why we are living on the cusp of a third industrial revolution. A Foreign Affairs article on the 2012 Failed States Index claims that, “most countries that fall apart … do so not with a bang but with a whimper.” What are your thoughts on this statement? There are examples of seemingly gradual deterioration: where a vicious cycle of state weakness generates a spiral of decline, with deepening corruption and reducing public service, leading to an increasing loss of trust from the population. We’ve seen this in countries including Haiti, Somalia, Liberia, and Zimbabwe.

 

International Perspectives: Asia’s Development Challenges

February 13, 2013

Blog Post

This week, the International Policy, Development and Practice Speaker Series [at UC Berkeley] welcomed David D. Arnold, the President of The Asia Foundation. Seen through the lens of his work at The Asia Foundation, Mr. Arnold delivered a talk on “Asia’s Development Challenges.”

 

Shaking up Global Fight to End Human Trafficking

February 6, 2013

Blog Post

Over the weekend, academics and practitioners from across the U.S. gathered at the University of Southern California for a conference that aimed to challenge some of the bedrock assumptions and rhetoric that underpin the movement against trafficking in persons.

 

Indonesia Makes Strides in Budget Transparency Despite Political Patronage

January 30, 2013

Blog Post

Two new publications showing very different profiles of the quality of governance in Indonesia landed on my desk this week, prompting debate and consternation. The just-launched International Budget Partnership’s “2012 Open Budget Survey” painted an encouraging picture…

 

U.S.-ASEAN Relations Mature, but Pitfalls Abound

January 30, 2013

Blog Post

For Southeast Asia, 2012 brought both challenges and opportunities to the region – from Cambodia’s chairmanship of ASEAN and further political opening in Burma (also known as Myanmar) to tensions in the South China Sea and the adoption of the ASEAN Declaration of Human Rights (ADHR).

 

Ulaanbaatar’s Ger Residents May See Improvements Under New Leadership

January 16, 2013

Blog Post

Mongolia enters 2013 as one of the world’s fastest growing economies, with forecasters predicting GDP growth of 18-20 percent. Driven by a boom in mining revenues, the impact of this growth is clearly visible in Mongolia’s capital city, Ulaanbaatar…

 

China’s Charity Sector Poised to Expand In 2013

January 9, 2013

Blog Post

Last November, when a new leadership team stepped forward in Beijing, they confronted a very different set of challenges than their predecessors had faced. Among the most urgent of these is the challenge of providing adequate basic social services for all of China’s 1.3 billion people…

 

Proving that Good Governance is Good Politics: A Tribute to Secretary Jesse Robredo

August 22, 2012

Blog Post

Secretary of the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) Jesse Manalastas Robredo – a highly-regarded, multi-awarded public servant, and an internationally recognized expert in local governance – died after the small plane…

 

Legislating Against Witchcraft Accusations in Nepal

August 8, 2012

Blog Post

In Nepal’s Chitwan District, a 40-year-old widow and mother of two was

 

How Do You Get Reform in a Country Like the Philippines?

April 25, 2012

Blog Post

In previous posts, the nature of politics in the Philippines has been explored from many angles. We’ve examined the history of a weak state, how local politicians have difficulty making a national impact, and trials and techniques of Philippine presidents in the face of this situation.

 

Taking a Hard Look at Formal and Informal Justice Systems in the Philippines

April 11, 2012

Blog Post

It is always exciting to be able to take a break from program implementation to think more deeply about the theories that underlie development practice on the ground. That is of course the whole point of a teaching sabbatical, and it is what we both enjoyed about the “Experts’ Roundtable on Local-Level Justice in Conflict-Affected and Fragile Regions.”…

 

Asia: The World’s Most Water-Stressed Continent

March 21, 2012

Blog Post

Tomorrow is World Water Day. Tragically, by the end of the day, 4,300 children somewhere in the world will have died because of contaminated water and poor sanitation. That’s one child every every 20 seconds. This is an appalling statistic, but still represents a marked improvement from 12 years ago…

 

Early Feminism in the Philippines

March 7, 2012

Blog Post

The Philippines has been noted as having one of the smallest gender disparities in the world. The gender gap has been closed in both health and education; the country has had two female presidents…

 

Have Philippine Presidents Overcome the Governance Impact of the ‘Hollywood Years?’

February 15, 2012

Blog Post

The Philippines has many cultural similarities to the rest of Southeast Asia. Some similarities, take cockfighting for example, puzzle some Filipinos and give great pride to other Filipinos (particularly males). Cockfighting is pre-colonial (as the chronicler of Magellan’s voyage when it arrived in the Philippines, Antonio Pigafetta observed) and is shared with Southeast Asia…

 

The Philippines in the Context of Southeast Asia’s History

February 8, 2012

Blog Post

One of the interesting things about team-teaching a course on “The Domestic Politics of Southeast Asia: The Philippines and Thailand” is that I myself have never taken a course on Southeast Asia. I was an American politics specialist as a graduate student, with a dissertation on “Interpretation and American Electoral Studies.” On the Philippines in particular…

 

U.S. Military and the Philippines: What do Philippine Citizens Really Think?

February 1, 2012

Blog Post

No sooner did I warn in last week’s blog on my way to Washington, D.C., that there is “a danger that U.S.-Philippine relations will be viewed entirely through the lens of ‘the rise of China'” than I was greeted upon arrival by the morning front-page story in The Washington Post entitled, “Philippines may allow greater U.S. military presence in reaction to China’s rise.” The article stated that “the sudden rush by many in the Asia-Pacific region to embrace Washington is a direct reaction to China’s rise as a military power and its assertiveness in staking claims to disputed territories, such as the energy-rich South China Sea.”

 

Social Media in the Philippines is Widespread, but what is its Impact?

October 12, 2011

Blog Post

The Philippines long had a terrible reputation for telecommunications, with Singapore’s Lee Kuan Yew famously saying that in 1992, 99 percent of the population in the Philippines was waiting for a phone and 1 percent was waiting for a dial tone. However, beginning with the administration of Fidel Ramos (1992-1998) and followed by President Estrada (1998-2001), the telecoms industry was liberalized, and phone ownership skyrocketed.