Since its inception in 2014, the Perth USAsia Centre has focused on building relationships and strengthening strategic thinking across the Indo-Pacific. Critical to this mission has been our network of experts and policy leaders from around the region, who bring a diversity of national and thematic perspectives to our research, dialogues and commentary.
Indeed, the importance of informed and reliable perspectives from the Indo-Pacific has never been higher. At no time in living memory have societies across the globe been under such intense social, economic and institutional pressures. And with many international connections severed by the COVID crisis, the need to reaffirm regional networks is of utmost importance.
In 2020, the Centre launched an Indo-Pacific Fellows program to help meet this challenge. Featuring a Non-Resident Fellow from five key countries, the program seeks to bring new and diverse perspectives on regional affairs into the Australian national debate.
After a successful year of research, reporting and commentary from our inaugural cohort of Indo-Pacific Fellows
, we are pleased to announce our “class of 2021”:
- India – Ritika Passi, Observer Research Foundation. Ritika works on connectivity, tracking developments across Eurasia and the Indo-Pacific; the changing global economic order and its geopolitical impact; and Indian foreign policy.
- Indonesia – Alisha Sulisto, Bower Group Asia. Alisha’s particular area of expertise is the financial services sector, ranging from banking, payments, fintech, insurance, microlending with great interests in other industries such as pharmaceutical, oil, gas, mining, agribusiness, higher-education, and digital.
- Korea – Dr Kyungjin Song, FN Global Issues Centre. Kyunjin specialises in global economic and foreign affairs issues, frequently writing for both the Financial News in Korea, and for the Korea Times.
- Malaysia – Dr Juita Mohamad, Institute of Strategic and International Studies. Juita’s research interests include trade, regional integration, protectionism, wage inequality and the informal sector.
- Singapore – Dr Kaewkamol "Karen" Pitakdumrongkit, Rajaratnam School of International Studies. Karen’s research interests include international economic negotiation, Indo-Pacific governance and integration, regional-global economic governance dynamics, ASEAN Economic Community, and ASEAN’s external relations (ASEAN-Plus frameworks).
Our 2021 Indo-Pacific Fellows are all foreign policy thought leaders, and will offer explanation and analysis of challenges facing both their country and the wider region.
The diversity of our Fellows’ expertise will offer a unique window into how countries of the Indo-Pacific are individually and collectively adjusting to these new and challenging times.
Over the coming months, our 2021 Indo-Pacific Fellows will be offering expert analyses of social, political, economic and security developments from the region. They will contribute analysis briefs, blogs, interviews, and explainers to the Centre’s programs. We will regularly feature their work in communications with our network from across the Indo-Pacific and beyond.
The Centre is very fortunate to be able to appoint such a high calibre and diverse group of experts for our 2021 Indo-Pacific Fellows program. Please look out for their work in the coming months.