During the year, RSIS staff continued to research into their respective areas of expertise, and shared their findings and insights through RSIS publications and external publications. Topical issues such as the Indo-Pacific concept and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), counterterrorism, cybersecurity, geopolitics, security, online falsehoods, and disinformation were particularly popular. RSIS scholars also published peer-reviewed books on their areas of research.
Flagship RSIS programmes were among the event highlights of the year. The Asia Pacific Programme for Senior Military Officers
(APPSMO) observed its 20th edition while the Asia-Pacific Programme for Senior National Security Officers (APPSNO) had its 12th run.
RSIS continues to serve key roles in security within the region, acting as Secretariat for both the Singapore National Committee of the Council for Security Cooperation in the Asia Pacific (CSCAP Singapore) and the Track II Network of ASEAN Defence and Security Institutions (NADI). These roles allow RSIS to actively contribute to discussions on regional security, support the ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting (ADMM) with relevant inputs and timely ahead-of-the-curve policy recommendations, and build the confidence of ASEAN think tanks and research institutions.
RSIS also acts as the Secretariat of the Consortium of NonTraditional Security (NTS) Studies in Asia. A network of 31 institutions and think tanks across Asia, NTS-Asia is a platform for academic and policy exchange on developments on NTS issues and research across the Asian region. The Centre for NonTraditional Security Studies staffs the secretariat. In 2018, it held its annual conference on “Resilience in the Face of Disruptions”, bringing together 50 participants from member institutions of the consortium to deliberate on disruptive implications relating to NTS issues in the region.
2018 is the year that Singapore took on chairmanship of ASEAN. This led RSIS to work closely with other organisations on ASEAN-related forums and seminars, such as the ASEAN Leadership Forum (ALF) and the ASEAN Media Forum (AMF).
When the Parliamentary Select Committee on Deliberate Online Falsehoods — Causes, Consequences and Countermeasures held its hearings in March 2018, RSIS experts gave oral evidence for their written representations to the committee. Among them were Asst Prof Michael Raska, Coordinator of the Military Transformations Programme of IDSS; Dr Shashi Jayakumar, head of the Centre of Excellence for National Security (CENS), and his team consisting Research Fellow Dr Gulizar Haciyakupoglu, Associate Research Fellow Jennifer Yang Hui, Senior Fellow Benjamin Ang (who is also Coordinator of Cyber and Homeland Defence Programme), Senior Fellow and Deputy Head of CENS Dr Norman Vasu, and Research Fellow and Coordinator of the National Security Studies Programme (NSSP) Dr Damien Cheong. CENS also produced two policy reports on this topic titled “Fake News: National Security in the Post-Truth Era” and “Countering Fake News: A Survey of Recent Global Initiatives” in 2018.
The 2019 Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) World University Rankings published in June 2018 once again delivered good news for Nanyang Technological University (NTU) Singapore and RSIS. NTU maintained its outstanding achievement of being one of the world’s top 15 universities, ranking 12th in the world and 2nd in Asia. NTU also remained the world’s top young university, ranking 1st in the QS Top 50 Universities Under 50 list. This remains an undeniable acknowledgement of NTU’s reputation, exceptional academic standards, and excellent offering of educational experience.
In AY2018/2019, our masters programmes attracted a cosmopolitan student body with a wide range of educational, professional, and cultural backgrounds. Over 200 students from more than 30 countries enrolled in RSIS’ MSc programmes in AY2018/2019.
In AY2018/2019, 26 students were offered scholarships and study awards, including the RSIS Scholarship, Lee Foundation Scholarship, Student Research Assistantships, Terrorism Analyst Study Awards, Research Analyst Study Awards, and ASEAN Graduate Scholarship.
RSIS continued to strengthen its marketing initiatives by organising information-sharing sessions on campus and participating in leading postgraduate education fairs such as the QS World Grad School Tours in Jakarta, Manila, Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur or Melbourne, and the Postgraduate Education Fair in Singapore. On top of that, RSIS faculty members continued to make marketing visits to selected regional countries. RSIS also engaged in online and print advertising in international magazines, advertising via social media, and engaged relevant
organisations to continue raising RSIS’ profile as a destination of choice for excellent professional education in the field of international affairs. RSIS will also be tapping on its alumni network to help promote its degree programmes. The overarching goal of these initiatives is to increase the number and quality of applications for AY2019/2020.
In AY2018/2019, RSIS is hosting visiting faculty members teaching courses in the MSc (Asian Studies), MSc (International Political Economy), and MSc (Strategic Studies) programmes. They are Prof Gavin Flood (teaching Managing Inter-Religious Dynamics in a Plural Context), Prof Lee Hwok Aun (teaching Globalisation and Development), and Assoc Prof Antonio Rappa (teaching Special Forces). We will continue to invite distinguished international scholars to teach at RSIS.
Annual Reviews / General
Last updated on 02/03/2020