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Politics

Global

What Needs to be Done to Improve Government Accountability

Thursday, July 5, 2018

Governments come and go. A country's vision or strategy tries to tie these governments' policies together to tell a story about how a country will progress economically, culturally, and socially. Auditors play a key, if little understood role, in these strategies' success. More of these plans, and the centers of government that oversee them, should be audited. Public audit reports can also attract research and practical interest in these plans' successes and failures.

Global

Corruption Eats Away at Asia-Pacific Growth

Thursday, June 28, 2018

Corruption has long been a prominent problem in the Asia-Pacific, but many countries have seemingly lacked the will to combat it. Until measures are enacted to increase transparency and accountability in governance, corruption will continue to gnaw away at economic gains.

ASEAN

A Matter of Trust: Media and Politics in Southeast Asia

Thursday, June 21, 2018

Southeast Asians have dwindling confidence in traditional journalism. As a result, social media platforms such as Facebook and WhatsApp have become the main source of information for voters. A combination of wider access to the internet and declining trust in longstanding news sources is changing the dynamics of democracy across the region.

China

The Politics of Corporate Social Responsibility in China

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Corporate social responsibility (CSR) has been a popular topic, and many countries have provided incentives for corporations to contribute more to the public good. China has joined such efforts as part of its campaign to achieve sustainable growth. But more coherent incentives are needed to encourage Chinese businesses to join the party.

Asia Pacific

How Can Asia Boost Philanthropy?

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Wealth in Asia is growing rapidly, but philanthropy has not kept pace. Governments should improve regulation and change tax and fiscal policies to make it easier for Asians and corporations to give in a systematic way. They should also ensure donations can efficiently reach organizations working to meet society’s needs.

China

China Stuck in the Success Trap

Thursday, May 17, 2018

China’s development model has brought great economic success but also serious social and environmental problems. Can Xi Jinping’s major governance changes make the Chinese model more sustainable?

China

Trust in Ratings: China's Social Credit System

Thursday, May 17, 2018

China has launched its "social credit system," hoping to increase social trust. But when value is calculated by opaque algorithms using vast amounts of personal data, what will happen to China, and indeed, what might it mean for the world?

ASEAN

Facebook is Hurting Democracy in Myanmar

Thursday, May 10, 2018

In Myanmar, Buddhist nationalist groups have used Facebook to swamp public opinion with anti-Muslim speech. As elected representatives are pressed to follow these extreme views, Myanmar is showing the world how unreined social media can hurt democracy.

Global

The New Tech of Epidemic Surveillance: A Magic Bullet?

Thursday, May 3, 2018

Technology is transforming epidemiology. However, algorithms, satellites, and drones offer no easy solution. Ethical and political issues need to be considered to ensure that everyone reaps the benefits of these new technologies.

ASEAN

Anti-Fake News Remedies Worse than the Disease in Asia

Thursday, May 3, 2018

False information sways elections, and social media makes it worse. So governments are rushing through laws to block “fake news.” But in Southeast Asia, these laws will do more harm to elections than fake news.

China

China and the Building of Africa’s Information Societies

Thursday, April 26, 2018

Despite suspicions, China's engagement in developing Africa's telecom infrastructure has not led to an imposition of an authoritarian model of information control on the continent. Concerns should rather focus on the promotion of a top-down governmental model of development, which has proved inefficient.

China

What Is in China's 13th National People’s Congress for the World?

Thursday, April 5, 2018

Last month, the first session of China's 13th National People's Congress enacted a much discussed constitutional change, opening up a path for Xi Jinping to be president for life. Beyond this spectacular measure, promotions and appointments indicate the direction of the winds for China's foreign partners and competitors.

China

Can America Bounce Back in Asia?

Thursday, March 29, 2018

In tandem with China’s rise, America's geopolitical predominance in Asia has been waning, and this decline in influence has accelerated under the presidency of Donald Trump. Looking further ahead, however, it is not obvious that this "new normal" will be sustained in light of America’s deep economic and security interests in Asia and China’s fundamental fragilities.

Global

Trump and the Nuclear World Order

Thursday, March 22, 2018

In its Nuclear Posture Review released in February 2018, the Trump administration introduced new types of weapons and expanded the circumstances for justifying their use. This reverses nuclear arms control gains acquired through decades of delicate global negotiations.

ASEAN

Fighting Piracy on the ASEAN Seas

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Almost half of the world's pirate attacks happen in Southeast Asia. Among the most common locations for attacks is the Strait of Malacca, where tankers carry oil from the Gulf region to China, Japan, and South Korea, and via Singapore's refineries. As piracy becomes more prevalent, collaboration across the ASEAN region is more necessary than ever.

ASEAN

The Philippines Beyond the Dark Spell

Thursday, March 8, 2018

Despite his questionable, often violent leadership, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte enjoys an astounding 80% approval rating. In actuality, this support is carefully weighed and highly conditional. While Duterte won the presidency by speaking to the anxieties and hopes of the citizens, he now has to deliver on his promises, and the people are keeping tabs.

Asia Pacific

Without America and Without a Plan

Thursday, February 8, 2018

What if the United States withdrew its strategic commitment to allies in the Indo-Pacific? Taking that hypothesis seriously, Hugh White's latest essay, "Without America: Australia in the New Asia," suggests that Australia does not have any other option than engaging China—and neither does the rest of Asia.

China

The Korean Games, Olympic and Otherwise

Thursday, February 8, 2018

North Korea has agreed to march alongside South Korea and to have a joint women’s hockey team with its neighbor at the 2018 Winter Olympic Games in Pyeongchang. The sports diplomacy of North Korea is often unpredictable, but could this particular instance signal a geopolitical détente in an East Asia gripped by nuclear fears?