ISEAS Library Selects
Monthly Journal Articles on the
Southeast Asian Region
Extracted from Internet Sources
June 2019

This issue of Monthly Articles Alert contains one article contributed by Dr Ooi Kee Beng, Senior Fellow, ISEAS - Yusof Ishak Institute. You can click his name to go to the article directly.

This is an information alert service put together by the ISEAS Library that contains links to commentaries, blog and journal articles extracted from Internet sources covering Southeast Asia and special topics relevant to the research interest/direction/agenda of ISEAS.  

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Working Paper on China-Cambodia Relations - Assessing the Impacts of Chinese Investments in Cambodia: The Case of Preah Sihanoukville Province
[22-page PDF document]

Cambodian Institute for Cooperation and Peace



Penjara kembali rusuh di Langkat dan Siak. Solusinya bukan bangun penjara baru tapi kurangi tahanan dan perbaiki manajemen penjara [Riots in Langkat and Siak happen again. The solution is not to build a new prison but reduce detention and improve prison management]

Choky R. Ramadhan, Dosen Hukum Acara Pidana/ Ketua MaPPI FHUI, Universitas Indonesia


Banjir bandang jelang kemarau: absennya data dan mengapa sering berulang? [Flash floods ahead of the dry season: the absence of data and why does it often repeat itself?]

Yopi Ilhamsyah, Lecturer in Meteorology, Universitas Syiah Kuala; Cut Azizah,
Dosen Teknik Sipil, Universitas Almuslim

Understanding intolerance with a better research method: Using a statistical analysis method called structural equation modelling (SEM), my team and I identified that strong religious and ethnic identity is a factor in someone having intolerant attitudes.

Sari Seftiani, Researcher at Research Center for Population - Indonesia Institute of Sciences, Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI)

Indonesia dan ancaman bioterorisme antraks: Beberapa hal yang perlu diketahui agar bisa mencegahnya [Indonesia and the threat of anthrax bioterrorism: Some things to know in order to prevent it]

Kambang Sariadji, Researcher in Bacteriology, National Institute of Health Research and Development (NIHRD), Ministry of Health Indonesia

The Role of Credit Guarantee Schemes for Financing MSMEs: Evidence from Rural and Urban Areas in Indonesia
[32-page PDF document]

Adhitya Wardhono, Mohamad Ikhsan Modjo, and Eka Wahyu Utami
Asian Development Bank Institute


Jokowi ingin pindahkan ibu kota ke Kalimantan karena posisinya yang di tengah. Apakah ini tepat? [Jokowi wants to move the capital to Kalimantan because of its central location. Is this accurate?] ...saya berpendapat bahwa untuk menentukan lokasi ibu kota, pemerintah perlu menimbang bukan hanya posisi lokasi tersebut di dalam ruang wilayah negara, tapi juga menimbang kemampuan lokasi tersebut untuk berkembang secara organik menjadi pusat baik dari segi aksesibilitas fisik maupun budaya. Oleh karena itu ibu kota sebaiknya dilihat sebagai ruang yang organik bukan yang ideal atau letaknya harus di tengah.

Dwiyanti Kusumaningrum, Researcher, Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI)


Does Indonesia really need to move its capital? The government argues that moving the capital out of Java will support equitable development in eastern Indonesia. But to support growth in less developed areas the government needs to distribute more new centres of growth and economic opportunities, chiefly to eastern Indonesia. Moving the capital city alone will not be enough.

Rendy A. Diningrat
Researcher, SMERU Research Institute

Indonesia's presidential election dispute: Prabowo's plan to challenge election result may be in vain: The article will describe the legal process that Prabowo must undergo for his case, and why it will likely fail.

Josua Satria Collins, Researcher at Indonesia Judicial Monitoring Society (MaPPI), Faculty of Law University of Indonesia, Universitas Indonesia

Perceptions and Readiness of Indonesia towards the Belt and Road Initiative
[contains link to a 52-page PDF document]

Yose Rizal Damuri, Vidhyandika Perkasa, Raymond Atje, Fajar Hirawan
Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS)


Poor fishery management costs Indonesia $7 billion per year. Here's how to stop it

Mulia Nurhasan, Researcher, CGIAR System Organization


Can Transparency and Accountability Programs Improve Health? Experimental Evidence from Indonesia and Tanzania

Jean Arkedis, Jessica Creighton, Akshay Dixit, Archon Fung, Stephen Kosack, Dan Levy, and Courtney Tolmie
Center for International Development at Harvard University


The Ongoing Problem of Pro-ISIS Cells in Indonesia
[15-page PDF document]

Institute for Policy Analysis of Conflict



Malaysia: Another Crisis Looming? Malaysia has travelled far away from the aspirations of Tunku Abdul Rahman when the Jalur Gemilang was raised for the first time over a free Malaya in 1957. Malaysia's economic prosperity is relatively declining in the region and the nation is increasingly strangled by the need to conform. Malaysia appears to be a ship without a rudder, its reform agenda locked away under the Official Secrets Act.

Murray Hunter
Geopolitical Monitor

Malaysian Property Market: Affordability and the National Housing Policy: This paper divide to 4 section, the first section of the present work summarises the previous findings and extends them, taking into account development. In section 2, the paper discusses the approach to affordability and analyse the recently released national housing policy. In section 3, policy recommendations are presented, both with reference to the downturn phase of the property market and to the issue of affordability, with special attention to the possibility offered by the rental market. Section 4 concludes the paper.
[28-page PDF document]

Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs (IDEAS) (Malaysia)

After a Year in Power, Has Pakatan Harapan Learnt Enough to Save Malaysia from Itself? The big debate in Malaysia one year after the change in government on May 9, 2018, concerns the unfolding nature of Pakatan Harapan (PH). No one seriously doubts that it has charted a vastly different path for the country from that set by BN, which had ruled the country for over six decades. The question is whether it will be bold enough and united enough to break the country's path dependence where governance and politicking are concerned. More to the point, the key question is whether it knows what needs to be done.

Ooi Kee Beng
Penang Monthly

ICT and e-Commerce in Numbers

Lee Siu Ming
Penang Monthly

Is Penang Daring and Techy Enough for the Digital Age?

Timothy Choy
Penang Monthly

Mosques Between Two States: Some mosques in Penang are unique in that they straddle state borders and open their doors to the faithful, be they from Penang or from without. Penang Monthly explores three such mosques.

Nidhal Mujahid
Penang Monthly

Need for Speed: Penang's Broadband Dilemma: Given how essential an internet connection is, it is troubling to know that Malaysians pay more for less internet speed compared to consumers in other countries. Within the Asean region, Singapore and Thailand have much faster download speeds while Malaysia's is comparable to Vietnam, a country which has significantly lower per capita income.

Timothy Choy
Penang Monthly


The Boria Laughs at the Powerful, the Greedy, the Lecherous, the Losers - and at Each of Us

Julia Tan
Penang Monthly

The Holiday Home of the Last King of Setul: Segara Ninda, the centuries-old Anglo-Malay mansion at the corner of Jalan Penang and Lebuh Farquhar, is a poignant reminder that a Malay king once ruled southern Siam. It belonged to Tengku Baharuddin bin Ku Meh, or Ku Din Ku Meh - the last king of Setul. Setul, at one time known as the Kingdom of Setul Mambang Segara, was a Malay kingdom established by the cadet branch of the Kedah royal house in the wake of a partition that took place in 1808.

Enzo Sim
Penang Monthly

Becoming Malaysia Baru: Much has been said about "Malaysia Baru" and, more often than not, the concept has been discussed in terms of the destination - Malaysia should be "this" or "that". What about the processes that need to be undertaken to reach that destination? ISIS Focus reached out to YB Khairy Jamaluddin, Member of Parliament for Rembau, Negeri Sembilan, to share some of his thoughts concerning the nation.

Firdaos Rosli
Institute of Strategic and International Studies (ISIS) Malaysia

Debt & Despair: Economists were quick to point out that actual government debt stood at merely RM687 billion in 2017 - only a bit more than half of the widely-reported RM1 trillion gure. The remainder actually consists of non-debt contingent liabilities, such as government debt guarantees as well as committed future payments for Public-Private-Partnership (PPP) projects. But many others did not make this distinction. Before long, a nationwide fetish for debt reduction became ingrained in the public psyche. The fears of a looming public debt crisis were widely overstated. The Malaysian government has never defaulted on its sovereign debt, and it likely never will anytime in the near future...Historically, national debt crises are usually triggered by defaults in private sector debt - and in select cases of sovereign debt defaults, they are more often than not the result of political upheaval or losses in monetary sovereignty. But there may be other reasons to be concerned. Elevated levels of public debt do carry other, more inconspicuous hazards, even if a sovereign debt crisis is unlikely.

Calvin Cheng
Institute of Strategic and International Studies (ISIS) Malaysia


Reality Check: The End of Identity Politics? The Pakatan Harapan (PH) coalition is perceived to be more multiracial and practising less racial politics than the Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition it unseated. The two largest component parties in PH, Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) and the Democratic Action Party (DAP) are as multiracial as political parties get in Malaysia. Even Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (PPBM), labelled the "new UMNO", is marginally more multiracial than the party it splintered from, by virtue of it allowing non-Bumiputeras to become associate members. Although the definition of a Bumiputera includes other non-ethnic Malay natives, in the political sense it has almost always exclusively referred to the Malays.

Harris Zainul
Institute of Strategic and International Studies (ISIS) Malaysia


Back To The Past? Mahathir Mohamad's return as Malaysia's prime minister has brought important shifts in foreign policy priorities and partnerships from that of his predecessor Najib Tun Razak. Framed through a nationalist lens and by Mahathir's earlier tenure as premier from 1981 to 2003, these changes are predominantly coloured by the past and do not fully reflect an appreciation of the new global environment and a calculated positioning of Malaysia for future regional uncertainties.

Bridget Welsh
ISIS Malaysia


Synergy among Stakeholders is Key to the Sustainability of Cultural Tourism in Penang
[7-page PDF document]

Pan Yi Chieh
Penang Institute

Sarawak: Promises Kept or Broken? Sarawak, the largest state in Malaysia, has found herself in uncharted waters. For the first time in history since the formation of Malaysia, the Land of the Hornbills, which had always been coined as Barisan Nasional's " fixed deposit", is now an opposition state and governed by an independent state-based coalition.
Subsequent to the fall of the Barisan Nasional (BN) government following Malaysia's 14th General Election (GE14) on 9 May 2018, Sarawak Barisan Nasional, the state's government made a unanimous decision to pull out from the Barisan Nasional coalition to form a state-based pact, named Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS - Sarawak Parties Alliance). The Pact composed of parties of the state ruling coalition - Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Persatu (PBB), Sarawak United People's Party (SUPP), Parti Rakyat Sarawak and Parti Demokratik Progresif.

Salina Salleh
Institute of Strategic and International Studies (ISIS) Malaysia


Tough Questions: Myanmar's Aung San Suu Kyi visiting Czech Republic and Hungary: Myanmar's State Councillor Aung San Suu Kyi is visiting the Czech Republic and Hungary - her first visit to Europe since the mass expulsion of the Rohingya. This could be a first step to reopen dialogue between Myanmar and the West - but tough questions need to be posed about her handling of the Rohingya question and other human rights concerns.


Financing Affordable Housing in Yangon
[90-page PDF document]

Asian Development Bank


Financial Development in Myanmar and the Role of Japan: Since 2011, under the Thein Sein government, Myanmar has started to build financial institutions almost from scratch. Japan has played a leading role in this effort, writing off debt, opening the Yangon Stock Exchange, vying for the entry of Japanese banks, and laying out finance-related laws. Myanmar's weak institutions present considerable challenges. By examining common features of financial markets in Southeast Asia, this paper identifies the preconditions for financial development to be a vehicle for Myanmar's industrialisation as well as the rationale for Japan's public and private involvement in Myanmar.
[21-page PDF document]

Tomoo Kikuchi, Takehiro Masutomo
S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS)


Credit Financing for Local Development: The Subnational Debt in the Philippines
[35-page PDF document]

Niño Raymond B. Alvina
Asian Development Bank Institute

ASEANASEAN/Southeast Asia

Indonesia-Singapore Young Leaders Scenario Planning Workshop: On 7-9 November 2018, the Indonesia Programme at the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies, Nanyang Technological University, in partnership with the Temasek Foundation, organised the "Indonesia-Singapore Young Leaders Scenario Planning Workshop" for next generation Indonesian and Singaporean leaders in their respective fields. The capacity-building workshop sought to bring together these leaders to envision how the two countries, their bilateral relations, as well as the Southeast Asian region in general, would evolve in the next two decades.
[42-page PDF document]

S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS)

ASEAN & UNSCR 1325: What Explains the Limited Engagement? (Part-II): Part 1 of this series demonstrated how ASEAN's gender mechanisms have failed to engage the central tenets of UN Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 1325 on facilitating substantial and meaningful participation of women in politics and security governance. This failure can be attributed to a combination of factors such as entrenched patriarchy, lack of political will, structural deficiencies, and limited capacities among the ASEAN member states. That said, these factors could be grouped into two broad categories-challenges of institutionalisation, and implementation.
[Link to Part 1]

Akanksha Khullar
Institute of Peace & Conflict Studies (IPCS)

Hydrogen for ASEAN Countries' Clean Energy Transition in Road Transport Sector

Dr Yanfei Li
Economic Research Institute for ASEAN and East Asia (ERIA)

Southeast Asia's Democratic Option: For the past half century, East Asia has been a crucible of change demanding global attention because of its promise. Most notably, countries in northeast and southeast Asia have posted high rates of economic growth for decades. And for most of this period, East Asia has also enjoyed peace and stability. As a region, East Asia has been the home of several "miracle" economies and still holds the greatest promise for growth despite volatile phases of the global economy. But what about the politics? After the economic rise of post-imperial Japan came the rise of the Asian tiger economies, followed by China's. The surging regional "tide" also lifted the economic fortunes of the other "boats" of neighbouring countries. However, only in Japan did economic transformation follow political transformation, as industrialisation and national development progressively built on a postwar democracy that displaced the militarism of Imperial Japan.

Bunn Nagara
Institute of Strategic and International Studies (ISIS) Malaysia


What is New in Policies toward Southeast Asia? A View from Japan: Rather than take a winner-take-all approach to developing markets in Southeast Asia where it competes head-on with China, Tokyo is looking for a more conciliatory approach to growth whereby it can partner with Beijing in regional projects of mutual interest. Although specific projects have yet to be identified, this approach adds a new twist to Abe's focus on Southeast Asia, previously seen as at odds with China's.

Shihoko Goto
ASAN Institute for Policy Studies


What is New in Policies toward Southeast Asia? A View from Southeast Asia on South Korea: When Moon Jae-in announced the "New Southern Policy" (NSP) during his visit to Indonesia in November 2017, the Korean foreign policy watchers scrambled to find out whether there was a "Southern Policy" before. Though it is obvious that no president ever announced a policy of engagement with Southeast Asian countries as a "southern policy," almost every president since Park Chung-hee had undertaken high-level visits to the region.

Chiew-Ping Hoo
ASAN Institute for Policy Studies


AsiaAsia Pacific

Ecotourism: A Sector where Sustainability is Everything
[7-page PDF document]

Negin Vaghefi
Penang Institute

Determinants of International Remittance Inflows in Middle-Income Countries in Asia and the Pacific
[121-page PDF document]

Naoyuki Yoshino, Farhad Taghizadeh-Hesary, and Miyu Otsuka
Asian Development Bank Institute

ANZUS and alliance politics in Southeast Asia
[15-page PDF document]

William Tow
Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI)


Malaysia Demands Belt and Road Transparency

Frank Ching
YaleGlobal Online


Trade in Trouble: How the Asia Pacific Can Step Up and Lead Reforms
[21-page PDF document]

Wendy Cutler, Peter Grey, Kim Jong-Hoon, Mari Pangestu, Yoichi Suzuki, and Tu Xinquan
Asia Society Policy Institute

India in APEC: Views from the Indo-Pacific: At present, India is not fully integrated with IndoPacific economies. India is negotiating party to RCEP, prospectively the first trade agreement to have a truly Indo-Pacific scope, one which will knit India into the regional trading system. However, India is absent from APEC, the region's premier economic forum. With India and the region in the midst of a major geopolitical and geoeconomic realignment, global stability and prosperity requires cooperation overcoming competition. This includes in discussing, formulating and abiding by the rules of the road on trade, investment and economic liberalisation. It is in this context that the prospects and implications of Indian accession to APEC should again
be considered.
[44-page PDF document]

Editor: Hugo Seymour
Authors: Peter Varghese AO, Amitendu Palit, Chu Minh Thao, Juita Mohamad, Pankaj Jha, Ritika Passi, Ryosuke Hanada, Shaun Star and Zikri Basir
Perth USia Centre


SCSEast/South China Sea

Gridlock in Global Ocean Governance: Diverging National Interests in the South China Sea: This paper identifies the origins of gridlock in global ocean governance by identifying the diverging national interests of the actors involved in the South China Sea dispute that hinder cooperation in the region. Furthermore, this paper will show how the legacy of UNCLOS has stifled its own ability to mediate this contemporary conflict. In conclusion, this paper asserts that the key to resolving the South China Sea dispute is through multilateral natural resource extraction between the actors involved in the conflict, aided by the legal and diplomatic support of UNCLOS.

Wesley Nappen, Temple University


What is New in Policies toward Southeast Asia? A View from the United States: In this commentary, I focus on US policies toward Southeast Asia, above all the South China Sea: What is unchanged? How is policy oscillating? And what has been gradually shifting?

Ketian Zhang
ASAN Institute for Policy Studies




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