I was at the University of Sydney for a total of 4 1/2 years, for both my Masters in International Studies and PhD in International Relations. This period was an important formative phase for my academic career. So when I was invited to moderate two forums consisting of Australian graduates for the Down Under Camp 2017, I was happy to oblige.
I am fortunate to be the co-Principal Investigator for a three-year British Academy Grant for a project entitled “The Design, Communication and Impact of Evidence-Based Forestry in Indonesia”. Other members of the group include Assoc. Prof. Dr Adam Tyson (co-PI) from Leeds University, Dr. Shofwan Albana from Universitas Indonesia, and Ms Ratih Indraswari, Mr Apresian Risadi Stanislaus, and Mr Albert Triwibowo from Universitas Katolik Parahyangan.
I was invited by the ASEAN Studies Centre at Universitas Gadjah Mada, Yogyakarta to give a public lecture on “The Environment and Political Economy in ASEAN: Haze, Indonesia and Beyond”. The talk largely covered issues discussed in my 2016 book, but also provided some new analysis of latest developments on the issue, including Singapore’s new Transboundary Haze Pollution Bill and recent efforts by Joko Widodo. The Prezi from the lecture can be found here.
Following the 16th International Peat Congress (IPC) in Kuching (Sarawak), Malaysia, widely read media reported that the congress supported the view that current agricultural practices in peatland areas, such as oil palm plantations, do not have a negative impact on the environment. However, this view is not shared by many of the participants, and does not reflect the broad message conveyed by the research presented at the congress.
In an effort to correct these statements, a number of the world’s leading researchers researchers and practitioners from around the world (including myself) have come together to publish a letter in Global Change Biology, one of the world’s leading environmental science journals. The 139 authors represent 115 government, academic, industry and non-governmental organizations from 20 countries. Forty of these organizations are based in Malaysia, Indonesia and Singapore; the countries most directly impacted by the adverse consequences of unsustainable management of tropical peatlands.
I was invited to share my views on ASEAN Regional Governance over Haze with a group of Urban Studies majors at the Yale-NUS College, Singapore on 27 September 2016. The Prezi of this presentation, entitled “Regional Governance in Response to Haze: Arguments For and Against” can be found here. I also shared the same presentation with a group of International Relations majors from UniSZA that visited the Department of International and Strategic Studies on 22 September 2016.
I was fortunate to be selected to be a participant in the KASEAS (Korean Association of Soitheast Asian Studies) ASEAN-Korea Academic Exchange Programme 2016. The programme this year was held at Sogang University, South Korea, from 26-27 August 2016, with the theme “ASEAN Centrality in the Multilateral Regional Architecture of East Asia”. I presented a paper entitled “Dust and Sandstorms in Northeast Asia: Potential for Enhancing ASEAN Centrality”. The Prezi for this paper can be found here.
I was invited by the Nanyang Technological University Centre for Contemporary Art to give a talk on the ‘crime’ of haze, as part of their Exhibition (de)Tour public talk series. This talk was scheduled in conjunction with (and to draw parallels to) an exhibition by Amar Kanwar currently on display at the CCA, entitled The Sovereign Forest, which offers a creative response to the understanding of crime, politics, human rights and ecology in the context of the village of Odisha in India. As a follow up to the talk, a series of workshops entitled “The Haze: An Enquiry” is onging at The Lab, in the CCA. Do contact the CCA if you are interested to join this research project.