The East Asian International Relations (EAIR) Forum, established in August 2014 at Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM), aims to provide a platform for Malaysia-based academics, researchers, and policy practitioners to interact with renowned scholars and experts in International Relations and East Asian Studies on contemporary research and policy issues affecting Malaysia’s security and wellbeing as a sovereign nation. To enable as open a debate as possible, discussions are held under the Chatham House Rule. Past speakers include Amitav Acharya (American University), Alice Ba (Delaware), Aileen Baviera (UP Diliman), Nick Bisley (La Trobe), Brian Bridges (formerly Lingnan), Vannarith Chheang (Cambodian Institute of Strategic Studies), Don Emmerson (Stanford), Paul Evans (UBC), Jurgen Haacke (LSE), Ian Hall (ANU), Hiro Katsumata (Kanazawa), Yuen Foong Khong (NUS), David Lampton (Johns Hopkins), Satu Limaye (East-West Center in Washington), Tosh Minohara (Kobe), Victor Sumsky (MGIMO), Takashi Terada (Doshisha), Fei-Ling Wang (Georgia Tech), Makmur Keliat (University of Indonesia), T.V. Paul (McGill), David Shambaugh (George Washington), Lee Jones (Queen Mary), Zhang Feng (ANU), John Brandon (Asia Foundation), Aries A. Arugay (UP Diliman), Timothy J. Colton (Harvard), Michael Magcamit (Musashi), Bill Hayton (Chatham House), Huong Le Thu (Australian National University), David Martin Jones (King’s College London), Greg Moore (Monash), He Kai (Griffith), Eunjung Lim (Ritsumeikan), Chanintira na Thalang (Thammasat) and Evelyn Goh (ANU).



Authoritarianism in Thailand and the China Factor

Enze Han, Associate Professor Department of Politics and Public Administration, The University of Hong Kong

30th November 2023

Assessing the State of US-China Strategic Competition

Carla Freeman, Senior Expert in the China Program, United States Institute of Peace (USIP); and

Andrew Scobell; Distinguished Fellow for China, United States Institute of Peace (USIP)

23rd June 2023

Why do emerging market democracies support or mobilize against China? Southeast Asia, Xinjiang, and the South China Sea

Alvin Camba; Assistant Professor, Josef Korbel School of International Studies, University of Denver; and

Stephanie Kam; Research Fellow (China Programme), Institute of Defence and Strategic Studies, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore

15th May 2023

China’s Digital Silk Road in Southeast Asia: Opportunities and Risks

Dr. Ilaria Carrozza; Senior Researcher at the Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO); 10th May 2023

Middle Powers in the Changing International Order: Malaysia and Turkey in Comparative Perspectives

Yalkun Uluyol; 17th April 2023

MAFDC Forum on the South China Sea 2023

Sumathy Permal; Dr. Carl Thayer; Dr. Sato Yoichiro; Dr. Hu Bo; Richard Heydarian; Dr Collin Koh; Aristyo Darmawan; Dr Yan YAN; Cdr Mohd Rulashari Shah & Fikry A. Rahman (Discussants); 10th April 2023

China’s power in Asia: rising, falling, or remaining steady?

Susannah Patton; Director of the Southeast Asia Program at the Lowy Institute and the Project Lead for the Asia Power Index; 7th March 2023

To Change, Complete or Coexist? US-China Relations since the Bush Administration

Paul Haenle; Maurice R. Greenberg Director’s Chair at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace; 10th February 2023


Between the U.S. and China: Nationalism and Public Support for Hedging in the Philippines

Xiaojun Li, Associate Professor of Political Science at NYU Shanghai and University of British Columbia; 6th December 2022

Negotiating Coexistence? Indonesia and Malaysia’s Tacit Understandings vis-à-vis China

Emirza Adi Syailendra, Visiting Scholar at IKMAS; 25th November 2022

Seminar on Indo-Pacific: What’s in a Name?

Prof. Paul Evans, Professor at the University of British Columbia, the HSBC Chair in Asian Research, the 7th POK Rafeah Chair at IKMAS, the co-founder of the Council for Security Cooperation in Asia Pacific (CSCAP), the Canadian Consortium on Human Security, and the Canada-Korea Forum and a Canadian representative on the ASEAN Regional Forum’s Experts and Eminent Persons Group; 12th October 2022

Forum on Malaysia-U.S. Relations in the Biden Era
Prof. Dr. Sufian Jusoh; Assoc. Prof. Dr. Lai Yew Meng; Dan Cintron, Elina Noor; Thomas Daniel; 20th July 2022

MAFDC Forum on the South China Sea

Capt Mohd Yusri bin Yusoff RMN; Assoc. Prof. Dr. Cheng-Chwee Kuik; Mr. Julio S. Amador III; Dr. Tharishini “Tharry” Krishnan; Dr. Bill Hayton; Ms. Sumathy Permal; Prof. Geoffrey Till & Dr. Collin Koh Swee Lean (Discussants); 7th April 2022

Pakistan’s Bilateral and Multilateral Engagements with Southeast Asia under Imran Khan: The Politics of Diversification and Differentiation

Dr Mustafa Izzuddin, Associate Professor and Executive Director of the Nehginpao Kipgen Center for Southeast Asian Studies at the Jindal School of International Affairs, O.P. Jindal Global University; 19th January 2022


Confronting or Engaging the DPRK? “Fire and Fury”, Summit Diplomacy, and Declaration to End the Korean War

Dr. Hoo Chiew Ping; 25th November 2021

China, the UN, and Human Protection: Beliefs, Power, Image

Professor Emeritus Rosemary Foot; 15th November 2021

The Limits of Hedging and South Korea’s Place in the Indo-Pacific

Dr. Andrew Yeo, Professor of Politics and Director of Asian Studies at The Catholic University of America in Washington DC; 9th June 2021

Re-engineering Eurasia: Competing Visions for the Connectivity of the Future

Maria Adele Carrai, Assistant Professor
Global China Studies NYU Shanghai; 28th April 2021

The Myanmar Crisis & ASEAN’s Dilemma

28th April 2021

Myanmar’s foreign policy after the coup: back to negative neutralism?

Andrea Passeri; 17th March 2021;

South Korea between the United States and China: Why Countries Don’t Want to Choose Sides

Dr. David C. Kang, University of Southern California Dornsife Director, the USC Korean Studies Institute


The End of the Global Maritime Fulcrum? Defense and Foreign Policy in the Second Jokowi Administration

Dr. Evan A. Laksmana; Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), Indonesia; 25 February 2020

U.S. Grand Strategy in the Age of Great Power Competition: From Assertion to Implementation

Dr. Colin F. Jackson; U.S. Naval War College; 21 January 2020


Technology Offsets in International Defence Procurement: The Case of Southeast Asia

Dr. Kogila Balakrishnan; Business Development (East Asia), WMG, University of Warwick; 3 December 2019

The Evolving EU-ASEAN Relations in the Age of Uncertainty

Dr. Frederick Kliem; S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS), NTU; 21 November 2019

Why is China “Sitting on the Fence” on the North Korean Nuclear Negotations? Explaining China’s “Loud Silence”

Dr. Lee Seong-hyon; Center For Chinese Studies The Sejong Institute; 14 November 2019

China and the World in the New Era

Prof. Shen Dingli; Fudan University’s Institute of International Studies, China; 13 November 2019

Great Power Strategies in Muslim Southeast Asia: Indonesian and Malaysian Public Perceptions of the U.S., China, and Japan

Dr. Guido Benny; Taylors University; 5 September 2019

US-China Relations: A View from China

Dr. Ruan Zongze; China Institute of International Studies (CIIS); 20 June 2019

China’s Rise and U.S. National Security Interests

Professor Thomas J. Christensen; Columbia University; 17 June 2019

The Evolving PRC-DPRK Relations: Insights from New Data on Bilateral Interactions

Bonnie Glaser; Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS); 30 May 2019

Territorial Disputes, Gray Zone Challenges and Great Power Influence in East & Southeast Asia

Lyle J. Morris; RAND Corporation; 30 April 2019

Japan-China Relations in An Era of Growing US-China Competition

Professor Kawashima Shin; University of Tokyo; 13 March 2019

East Asia’s Strategic Responses to the Rise of China, 2011-16

Professor Chung Jae Ho; Seoul National University; 11 February 2019


Hedging or Not Hedging? Reassessing the Security Practices of Southeast Asian States

Professor Jürgen Haacke; London School of Economics and Political Science; 4 September 2018

Analyzing China’s Influence in the Developing Asia

Professor Evelyn Goh; Australian National University; 15 August 2018

The Southern Thailand Conflict: Complexities, Obstacles and Opportunities

Dr. Chanintira na Thalang; Thammasat University; 30 July 2018

The ‘Indo-Pacific’: What’s in a Name?

Professor Donald K. Emmerson; Stanford University; 5 June 2018

US-China Relations in the New Eras of Trump and Xi

Professor David M. Lampton; John Hopkins University; 31 May 2018

PyeongChang Winter Olympics and Inter-Korean Relations

Dr. Eunjung Lim; Ritsumeikan University; 7 March 2018

Myanmar’s Rohingya Crisis: Causes and International Responses

Dr. Lee Jones; Queen Mary University of London; 13 February 2018

Cambodia’s Worldview and Major Power Politics

Dr. Vannarith Chheang; Cambodian Institute for Strategic Studies (CISS); 12 February 2018

Political Survival and China’s Crisis Behavior: Three Maritime Cases

Dr. He Kai; Griffith University; 29 January 2018

The North Korea Issue and Its Impact on Sino-US Relations in the Xi-Trump Era

Dr. Greg Moore; University of Nottingham; 23 January 2018


UK’s Strategy in Asia Post-Brexit

Professor David Martin Jones; King’s College London; 19 December 2017

Vietnam-China-US Triangle: Navigating the Challenges in the Xi–Trump Era

Dr. Huong Le Thu; Australian National University; 18 December 2017

The Modern Origins of China’s South China Sea Claims

Bill Hayton; Chatham House; 5 October 2017

Small Powers and the Security Utility of Trade: The Cases of Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, and Taiwan

Dr. Michael Magcamit; Musashi University; 22 August 2017

A Trump ‘Reset’ with Russia? Implications for East Asia

Professor Timothy J. Colton; Harvard University; 14 June 2017

When Populists Perform Foreign Policy: The Case of the Philippines under Duterte

Dr. Aries A. Arugay; University of the Philippines; 25 May 2017

US-Southeast Asian Relations in a New Administration

John J. Brandon; The Asia Foundation; 22 May 2017

China’s South China Sea Policy After the Arbitration Ruling

Dr. Zhang Feng; Australian National University; 18 May 2017

The Rise of China, Southeast Asia and State Transformation

Dr. Lee Jones; Queen Mary University of London; 26 April 2017

Assessing China’s Future

Professor David Shambaugh; George Washington University; 21 April 2017

Soft Balancing and the Future of Asian Order in the Trump Era

Professor T.V. Paul; International Studies Association President (2016-2017), McGill University; 5 April 2017

Indonesian Foreign Policy under Jokowi and the Idea of Maritime Fulcrum

Dr. Makmur Keliat; University of Indonesia; 22 March 2017


Cambodia’s Foreign Policy: Determinants of a Small State’s Survival Strategy

Dr. Vannarith Chheang; Cambodian Institute for Strategic Studies; 14 December 2016


India-ASEAN Engagement Under Modi

Professor Baladas Ghoshal; Society for Indian Ocean Studies; 28 October 2016

Quo Vadis Pax Americana? The Emerging Power Shift in Asia and the Lessons of History

Professor Tosh Minohara; Kobe University; 27 October 2016

RCEP, TPP, AIIB and Strategic Regionalism in Asia: Great Power Competition and the Future of the ASEAN-Plus Framework

Professor Takashi Terada; Doshisha University; 29 September 2016

Russia-ASEAN Relations Under Putin: The Changing Global and Regional Contexts

Professor Victor Sumsky; MGIMO University; 19 September 2016

International Politics: The Rules of the Game

Professor Khong Yuen-Foong; National University of Singapore; 14 July 2016

The United States and China in an Era of Uncertainty

Professor David M. Lampton; Johns Hopkins University; 28 June 2016

Australia and the South China Sea Disputes

Professor Nick Bisley; La Trobe University; 18 May 2016


ASEAN between China and the United States: Issues and Prospects

Professor Donald K. Emmerson; Stanford University; 10 December 2015

China’s Hard Choice: Between the Korean Bombs and United States

Professor Fei-Ling Wang; Georgia Institute of Technology; 24 November 2015

Prawns and Whales: The Politics of Inter-Korean Relations

Professor Brian Bridges; formerly Lingnan University; 14 September 2015

Myanmar’s Foreign Policy under President U Thein Sein: Non-Aligned Once More?

Professor Jürgen Haacke; London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE); 13 August 2015

Can Asia Challenge Chinese Dominance and Avoid Europe’s Past?

Professor Amitav Acharya; American University; 12 August 2015

East Asian Transitions and Its Institutional Dimensions: The United States, China and ASEAN

Professor Alice D. Ba; University of Delaware; 8 June 2015

Dilemmas in Getting China Right: Canadian Policy and the Evaporating Middle Power Role

Professor Paul Evans; University of British Columbia; 5 February 2015

ASEAN’s Leadership in East Asian Community Building

Dr. Hiro Katsumata; Kanazawa University; 5 January 2015


India’s Unavoidable Entanglements in East Asia

Dr. Ian Hall; The Australian National University; 9 December 2014

The South China Sea as a Complex Maritime Security Domain

Professor Aileen Baviera; University of the Philippines; 31 October 2014

East-Asia and the United States: A View from Washington

Dr. Satu Limaye; East-West Center in Washington; 25 August 2014