Asan Plenum

Session: Session 6 / Grand Ballroom I
Date/Time: May 1, 2013 / 15:30-16:45

Panel Description

Democratization in Southeast Asia has long drawn much academic and policymaking attention. Indonesia has been one of the favorite topics of democratization theorists. Similarly, Malaysia and Singapore, often described as “neither democratic nor authoritarian,” have been studied extensively. The Philippines is also an interesting case of enduring democracy, but with less than satisfactory governance. Most recently, Myanmar has surprised observers with its political liberalization. This panel reviews the current status of democracies in individual Southeast Asian countries and their future prospects. It will also investigate the overall trend of democratic change and progress in the region as a whole. The national perspectives and regional overview should be incorporated into the theoretical discourses of democracy and democratization for a better world, and in Southeast Asia in particular.

Guiding Questions

  1. 1. Where do individual Southeast Asian countries stand on the democratic spectrum?
  2. 2. Are new democracies in Indonesia and the Philippines making improvements toward fuller democracy?
  3. 3. How do we interpret the cause and consequences of the unexpected political change in Myanmar?