RSIS Webinar Series on “Economic Multilateralism for Post-COVID-19 Recovery”
Economic Resilience and Security in Southeast Asia and ASEAN
The notions of ‘economic resilience’ and ‘economic security’ have risen in importance in recent years, especially in the wake of the increasingly complex transboundary challenges like climate change, cybersecurity, and the COVID-19 pandemic. How are these understood and addressed in Southeast Asia and ASEAN? What are the implications of debate over these issues for the engagement of Southeast Asian states in economic multilateralism and long-term trends in ASEAN, including on the food security, digitalisation, connectivity and smart city development fronts?
About the Series
The global economy and the liberal international economic order are at a critical juncture. The US-China “trade war” and COVID-19 have exposed the strengths and weaknesses of the global production networks that have increasingly become the foundation of our thriving global economy. They have also demonstrated the strengths and limits of international cooperation in times of crisis.
While many now feel that the global economy could not, and would not, go back to “business as usual” post-COVID-19, the future is however an open question. Will we see a retreat from globalisation and a concomitant rise in economic nationalism? Should we expect lower economic growth rates to be the new norm? Would capitalism look very different from before? How would such changes affect our economic opportunities, quality of life, and lifestyle? What will become of the liberal international economic order, and its associated economic multilateralism, that prevailed pre-Trump?
Lurking behind these events are two higher-order issues that should be confronted as we ponder an economic future beyond the current COVID-19 pandemic: (a) what are the implications of on-going changes in the hierarchy of global power, and (b) what should be the nature and character of our evolving globalised economy?
This CMS webinar series will address these major questions that confront us as we contemplate the state of economic multilateralism in a post-COVID recovery. This series adopts a unique perspective to these issues by focusing on voices from the Asian region, which has been identified as the region most likely to be both the driver of economic growth coming out of the COVID pandemic as well as the future locus of global economic power.
About the Panellists
Mr Simon Lacey is currently Senior Lecturer in International Trade at the University of Adelaide’s School of Economics and Public Policy. Prior to that, Simon served as Vice-President Trade Facilitation and Market Access at Huawei Technologies in Shenzhen, where he was responsible for monitoring, managing and mitigating the biggest trade and investment risks facing the company across a dozen of its most important markets internationally.
Simon has worked in government advisory and policy advocacy roles in more than 30 countries supporting both sovereigns and corporates. It was in this capacity that Simon spent four years in Jakarta advising the Indonesian government on a broad range of issues in connection with the country’s membership of ASEAN, the WTO, and various preferential trade agreements and bilateral investment treaties.
Simon obtained his bachelor’s in laws from the University of Fribourg (Switzerland), and an LLM from the Georgetown University Law Center in Washington DC. He is currently completing a PhD in international economic law at UNSW Law.
Ms Sunny Park currently leads the Corporate, External & Legal Affairs (CELA) Department for Microsoft APAC with a team of professionals across the region. Her responsibilities span across a wide variety of cutting-edge issues synonymous with 4th industrial revolution and technology, such as AI and ethics, cyber security, privacy, data governance, antitrust, trade, ecommerce, telecommunication regulations, cloud computing and internet governance, as companies and governments are on a journey to digitally transform. In addition to supporting digital transformation of Microsoft’s customers within the APAC region, her responsibilities also include engaging and advancing Microsoft’s IT policy, ensuring regulatory compliance and anti corruption, and representing Microsoft externally with governments, academia and various industry associations. Ms Park is passionate about this dynamic region and brings a balanced perspective of “east and west” in her approach. She is a strong advocate of women’s issues and female leadership and has served in many capacities to advance women’s issues and advancements both internally and externally, including as the Chair of Microsoft’s CELA Global Diversity & Inclusion initiative.
Dr Jayant Menon is a Visiting Senior Fellow at ISEAS–Yusof Ishak Institute, Singapore. Following his early retirement from ADB, where he was Lead Economist in the Office of the Chief Economist, Dr. Menon joined the ISEAS – Yusof Ishak Institute in 2020 to continue his work on trade and development in the Asian region. He began work life as an academic in Australia, spending almost a decade at the Centre of Policy Studies at Monash University at its original campus in Clayton, Melbourne. He has worked at several other academic institutions including the University of Melbourne, Victoria University, the American University in Washington, DC and the ADB Institute in Tokyo. He has served as a Board Director of CDRI, Cambodia, and on the Advisory Board of the University of Nottingham, Malaysia. He holds adjunct appointments with the Australian National University, University of Nottingham, UK and IDEAS, Malaysia. He has authored/edited 15 books, 40 chapters in books and 80 articles in peer-reviewed journals.
Dr Kai He is Professor of International Relations and Director of the Centre for Governance and Public Policy, Griffith University, Australia. He was an Australian Research Council (ARC) Future Fellow (2017-2020). He is the author of Institutional Balancing in the Asia Pacific: Economic Interdependence and China’s Rise (Routledge, 2009) and China’s Crisis Behavior: Political Survival and Foreign Policy (Cambridge, 2016). His latest book includes Contesting Revisionism: China, the United States, and Transformation of International Order (with Steve Chan, Huiyun Feng, Weixing Hu, Oxford, 2021).
His peer-refereed articles have appeared in top journals, such as European Journal of International Relations, European Political Science Review, International Affairs, Political Science Quarterly, Review of International Studies, and Security Studies. He has received several internationally competitive fellowships, such as the Princeton-Harvard China and the World Program Postdoctoral Fellowship (2009-2010), an EAI fellowship (2011-2012) from the East Asia Institute in Seoul, an Asia Studies Fellowship (2012) from the East-West Center in Washington D.C.. His research is also funded by the Australian Research Council (2017-2020; 2021-2023), the MacArthur Foundation, USA (2016-2018), and the Korea Foundation (2016/2020).