Mahathir should focus on institutions, not personalities

Former Malaysian prime minister Mahathir Mohammad reading an anti-Prime Minister Najib Razak declaration during a media conference in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. (Photo: AAP)

Author: Shankaran Nambiar, MIER

Mahathir Mohamad, Malaysia’s former prime minister, seems to have missed the mark with the Citizen’s Declaration that he has so vigorously supported. The bulk of the Declaration is directed at Prime Minister Najib Razak and his alleged wrongdoings in connection with the beleaguered 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB). Therein lies its fatal flaw.

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The limits to Chinese political power

Chinese President Xi Jinping is displayed on a screen as Chinese battle tanks take part in a parade commemorating the 70th anniversary of Japan's surrender during World War II on 3 September 2015. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Editors, East Asia Forum

As China has become a larger player in the world economy and its influence in world political affairs has grown, the need to understand the Chinese political system and how political power is exercised within it has grown commensurately. Read more…

Is China’s authoritarianism decaying into personalised rule?

Chinese President Xi Jinping looks on in Prague, Czech Republic, 29 March 2016. At home, Xi Jingping has consolidated his personal power since taking office in 2012. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Carl Minzner, Fordham Law School

China is experiencing the most sustained domestic political crackdown since Tiananmen Square. Much attention has been devoted to the increasing state repression being directed at lawyers, journalists and civil society activists. But there is a separate and more fundamental concern. Read more…

Sarawak political machine will keep propping up Najib

Author: James Chin, University of Tasmania

On 7 May residents of Sarawak, the larger of the two Malaysian states located on Borneo island, will be going to the polls. Sarawak is the only one of Malaysia’s 13 states to hold its state and federal polls separately. Read more…

Grading Vietnam’s higher education reforms

Delegates attend the opening ceremony of the 12th National Congress of Vietnam's Communist Party in Hanoi, Vietnam, 21 January 2016. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Tran Van Hoa, Victoria University and University of Wollongong

Vietnam has announced a bold new higher education reform agenda. The government of Vietnam will offer up to 10,000 government scholarships for overseas doctoral study between 2014 and 2020 (or 1300–1500 per year) to tertiary and research institute staff. Read more…

China’s leadership model goes back to the future

Chinese paramilitary policemen perform a flag-lowering ceremony near a portrait of Mao Zedong on Tiananmen Gate in Beijing, Monday, 9 March 2015. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Nathan Attrill, ANU

This year marks the 40th anniversary of the death of Chairman Mao and with it one of the lowest points in the political history of the People’s Republic of China. Read more…

Assessing Modi’s third budget

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi addresses business leaders as he launches his ‘Make in India’ initiative in New Delhi, India. (Photo: AAP).

Author: Ashima Goyal, IGIDR

When India voted in the Narendra Modi government with a stable majority in the last election in 2014 it was widely expected to pave the way for major changes. But political obstacles and a tendency to follow the path of least resistance has limited progress. Read more…