Ben Bland, 16 June 2021, 13.00
Ben Bland is the Director of the Southeast Asia Program at the Lowy Institute, an international think-tank in Sydney, and the author of two critically acclaimed books on Asian politics. His most recent publication is Man of Contradictions: Joko Widodo and the Struggle to Remake Indonesia (2020), the first English language political biography of Indonesia’s president. His first book, Generation HK: Seeking Identity in China’s Shadow (2017), highlighted the role of young people in pushing back against Beijing’s pressures on Hong Kong.
Ben, who is also a Senior Research Fellow at the UK’s Foreign Policy Centre, is currently pursuing research projects on Indonesian attitudes to foreign policy, internet governance in Southeast Asia and future development models for the region. Before joining the Lowy Institute, Ben was an award-winning correspondent for the Financial Times, with postings in Hanoi, Jakarta and Hong Kong, and experience reporting across Southeast Asia and China over the previous decade. He has an MA in Southeast Asian Studies from the School of Oriental and African Studies at the University of London and an undergraduate degree in History from the University of Cambridge.