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Voter Anger, Frustration Drove Duterte to the Presidency

Anger and frustration – the feeling of being totally fed up – has been consistent through the recent presidential campaign in the Philippines, leading to the victory of a guy viewed as an outsider to the political culture, a rebel, a political heretic. Johanna Son looks at why voters chose Rodrigo Duterte as their next president in this ‘Bangkok Post’ commentary.

Mekong Cooperation, China-style

The China-led Lancang-Mekong Cooperation (LMC) mechanism, which had its first leaders’ summit in March 2016, may sound boring but has big implications for water governance in the Mekong region, and for dividing ASEAN states in their dealings with China. In this commentary for the ‘Reporting ASEAN’ series, Johanna Son says that  the Beijing-dominated forum that is far from neutral for smaller states. LMC could also undercut the ASEAN centrality the organisation so values.

ASEAN: How About Accountability Beyond Borders?

We all know CSR. But as ASEAN integration picks up and regional companies do more business overseas, it’s time to go further and push the value of corporate accountability instead, Carl Middleton points out in this commentary for the ‘Reporting ASEAN: 2015 and Beyond’ series. Can companies in the region go for accountability across borders?

As ASEAN Chair, Laos Walks Tightrope Among Big Powers

A small and landlocked country, Laos has learned, throughout its long history, how to survive among big powers. As ASEAN chair this year, it handles summits with external powers courting the organisation – the US, Russia and China. So far, so good, writes Kavi Chongkittavorn in this commentary for the ‘Reporting ASEAN: 2015 and Beyond’ series.

Whose Healthy ASEAN Community?

In health, ‪#‎ASEAN‬ integration comes across as a double-edged sword. What could the cure by to the illness of approaching health more as a commercial rather than a social good? Rosalia Sciortino of Mahidol and Chulalongkorn universities delves into this in her commentary for the ‘Reporting ASEAN: 2015 and Beyond’ series.

Media Still Disconnected from the ASEAN Community

For too long, media communities in ASEAN have missed reporting on ASEAN’s journey to integration. But the ASEAN Community’s formation presents newsrooms with the challenge of crafting fresh routines to report on the story of integration in a region of 625 million people, argues Kavi Chongkittavorn in this commentary.

CSR in ASEAN: It’s About How You Make Money

CSR. That acronym causes some people’s faces to light up, but brings a sceptical frown to others’. To many, it reeks of less than genuine altruism and is little different from public relations. Today, talking about CSR touches on issues like inclusion, responsibility, transparent norms, all within the context that what’s good for a business […]

Letting the Puppets Tell an ASEAN Story

A rich mix of puppetry artists has been busy creating a joint ASEAN performance to tell a common story we can all identify with, Johanna Son reports in this Q & A. Coming soon — performance at the ASEAN Summit in Lao PDR, September 2016.

 

 

Universities Need to Learn ASEAN-mindedness Too

Thanh Le of Vietnam National University’s News Bulletin and a #reportingasean fellow, spoke to Associate Prof. Dr. Nantana Gajaseni, executive director of the Bangkok-based ASEAN University Network (AUN), about the progress in pushing student exchange programs across universities in ASEAN. Student exchanges nurture ASEAN-mindedness among young people as future ASEAN citizens, she said.

Q&A: ‘We’ve Become More Interested in ASEAN’

Myanmar’s weekly newspaper ‘The Voice’ is one of the survivors of the country’s transition to media freedom over the last decade. Today, Zeya Thu, deputy chief editor of the paper, says “we are in a transitional society” and that the country is now learning about ASEAN.

Q&A: ‘We Need to Be Understood Better’

ASEAN Deputy Secretary-General AKP Mochtan talks to Johanna Son about the need for media to tell more ‘complete’ stories about ASEAN issues, especially during the year the Community is to be put in place.

Hunting For (Missed) ASEAN Leads And Stories

BANGKOK, Dec 20 (IPS Asia-Pacific) – At the 21st ASEAN Summit in Phnom Penh in November 2012, there were over 1,500 journalists covering the two-day event. But their focus was on two issues: the South China Sea dispute and the Rohingya crisis.

Achievements of the 21st ASEAN Summit

SINGAPORE, 20 Dec 2012 (ISEAS Perspective) – The 21st ASEAN Summit was held in Phnom Penh, from 17 to 20 November 2012. I have not come across any balanced assessment of the achievements and shortcomings of the Summit. Several reports in the popular media have focused on one or two issues, such as, the disagreement over the sentence in the Chairman’s closing statement that there was an ASEAN consensus not to internationalise the South China Sea issue. In this essay, I wish to summarise what I consider to have been the most important achievements of the Summit as well as to indicate what ASEAN’s main challenges are.

Towards Disaster-resilient ASEAN Community

Dec 16 (The Star) – ONE of the key challenges in building the Asean community is coming up with tangible outcomes that benefit the people directly. This is a tall order, since many of Asean’s objectives are at the regional level.

Can ASEAN Keep Aiming For New Goals Without Having Reached Old Ones?

Dec 17 (ISEAS Perspective) – As the deadline of 2015 draws closer, it is apparent that ASEAN will miss many of its goals as stipulated in its three Blueprints of ASEAN Political-Security Community (APSC), ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) and ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community (ASCC). Yet, ASEAN has continued to embark on even more ambitious goals: creating an “ASEAN common platform” on major global issues by 2022 in order to play an increased role in the community of nations, and launching negotiations on a Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), which ASEAN hopes to complete by the year 2015.

Whither Women’s Rights In ASEAN?

MELBOURNE, Dec 4 (The Jakarta Post) – There have been two recent important moments to remember in relation to women’s rights in Southeast Asia: the adoption of the ASEAN Human Rights Declaration on Nov. 18 and the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women on Nov. 25. In the context of ASEAN, a fundamental issue to be borne in mind is the direction of women’s rights.

Why Thailand Is Crazy Over AEC

Nov 19 (The Nation) – These days in Thailand, not a single day passes by without AEC (Asean Economic Community) on the headlines. The billion-baht worth of AEC campaign is zeroed in on with one single issue: to prepare the country and Thai people to compete with other nine members in the Asean Economic Community by 2015. Under the government of Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra, the AEC platform has been accorded a top priority and morphed into a major populist policy. Any reference that has the word “AEC” in it would certainly get the government funding. That explains why there are hundreds of AEC seminars in the past several months.

What To Expect At The Upcoming 21st ASEAN Summit?

Nov 6 (ISEAS Perspective) – Cambodia will host the 21st ASEAN Summit and related summits in Phnom Penh from 18-20 November 2012. This Perspective article reviews what to expect from the 21st ASEAN Summit.

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