Policy and Society

The Policy & Society research cluster promotes interdisciplinary research on social, economic and policy issues, with a focus on Southeast Asia and other parts of Asia. Research will explore interactive dynamics between local, national, regional, and global actors, and unveil the forces and mechanisms behind social change, economic development, and governance transformation. While recognising the importance of rigorous research, we pay special attention to policy implications of our research and foreground the efforts to connect researchers and policy stakeholders, such as governments, NGOs, and communities. The cluster members work on a wide range of issues, including, but not limited to, trade, politics, security, new industries, food, migration, ethnicity, religion, social justice, social institutions, and popular movements.

Cluster Coordinators
Assoc. Prof Zhan Shaohua (Sociology) Zhan Shaohua's research interests include land politics, food security, labour migration, and international development, with a focus on China and other Asian countries. He is the author of The Land Question in China: Agrarian Capitalism, Industrious Revolution, and East Asian Development (Routledge, 2019). His current research compares Chinese and Indian Immigrants in Singapore, Los Angeles and Vancouver. Another research project examines food politics in China and its global implications.
Asst. Prof Kei Koga (PPGA) Kei Koga's research interests include international security, international institutions, institutional changes, and East Asian/Indo-Pacific regional security, Japanese Foreign Policy, and ASEAN. He is the author of Reinventing Regional Security Institutions in Asia and Africa (Routledge, 2017), and his articles appear in International Affairs, International Studies Review, The Chinese Journal of International Politics, The Pacific Review, and Contemporary Southeast Asia. His current research focus includes Strategic Alignments and Institutional Dynamics in the Indo-Pacific region, particularly focusing on Japan and ASEAN.
Cluster Members
Assoc. Prof Sulfikar Amir (Sociology) Sulfikar's research interests primarily focus on examining institutional, political, and epistemological dimensions of scientific knowledge and technological systems. He has conducted research on technological nationalism, development and globalisation, nuclear politics, risk and disaster, design studies, city and infrastructure, and resilience. Sulfikar is currently working on a number of research projects that look into the resilient nature of urban-situated sociotechnical systems. These includes a series of risk perception surveys and mitigation on the Covid-19 pandemic. 
Asst. Prof Stephen Campbell (Sociology) Stephen Campbell’s research addresses labour, migration, and development in Myanmar and Thailand. His previous projects have focused on the regulation of mostly undocumented migrant workers in Mae Sot, Thailand, and dynamics of informal labour on the outskirts of Yangon. Currently, he is developing a new project on migration and border dynamics at a coastal town in southern Thailand. He has also published on critical theory and Burmese postcolonial literature.
Assoc. Prof Lim Khek Gee, Francis (Sociology) Francis Lim is Associate Professor at the School of Social Sciences, Nanyang Technological University (NTU) and Deputy Director, NTU University Scholars Programme. His research interests revolve around religion and culture in various Asian cultures and societies. He has conducted research in Nepal, Singapore, and Tibet and other parts sites in China. His current project looks at vernacular shrines in Singapore as religious cultural heritage and sites of local community formation. 
Prof Joseph Chin Yong Liow (CoHASS) Joseph Chin Yong Liow is Tan Kah Kee Chair and Professor of Comparative and International Politics, School of Social Sciences, and Dean, College of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences, Nanyang Technological University. His research interests encompass Muslim politics and social movements in Southeast Asia and the geopolitics and geoeconomics of the Asia Pacific region. Joseph is the author, co-author, or editor of 14 books, including Religion and Politics in Southeast Asia (Cambridge 2016) and Ambivalent Engagement: The United States and Regional Security in Southeast Asia after the Cold War (Brookings 2017). He is currently completing two manuscripts, a Cambridge Element titled Movement, Party, Politics: The Role of Tarbiyah and Dakwah in the Evolution of Islamism in Indonesia and Malaysia, and a fifth edition of Dictionary of the Modern Politics of Southeast Asia.
Prof K.K. Luke K.K. Luke is President’s Chair Professor of Linguistics and Chair of the School of Social Sciences at Nanyang Technological University. His research areas include Chinese Linguistics, Conversation Analysis, Grammar and Interaction, and Sentence-final Particles. His research is interdisciplinary in nature, exploring the ways in which joint actions are achieved through talk and ‘body language’ and tackling the fundamental question of what makes communication possible. Prof Luke has a close working relationship with specialists in such diverse fields as Psychology, Sociology, Cognitive Neuroscience, and Natural Language Processing in many parts of the world. Among his publications are Utterance Particles in Cantonese Conversation, Language and Society in Hong Kong, and Telephone Calls: Unity and Diversity in the Structure of Telephone Conversations across Languages and Cultures. 
Assoc. Prof Kamaludeen Mohamed Nasir (Sociology) Kamaludeen has published articles which focus on cultural sociology, social theory, the sociology of youth, and deviance and social control. He is the author/co-author of six books including Muslims in Singapore: Piety, Politics and Policies (2010), The Future of Singapore: Population, Society and the Nature of the State (2014) and Representing Islam: Hip-Hop of the September 11 Generation (2020). His latest book, which is being published this fall, is called The Primordial Modernity of Malay Nationality: Contemporary Identity in Malaysia and Singapore (forthcoming with Routledge’s Advances in Sociology series).
Prof Liu Hong (PPGA) Liu Hong is Tan Lark Sye Chair Professor of Public Policy and Global Affairs at the School of Social Sciences and Director of Nanyang Centre for Public Administration, Nanyang Technological University. His research interests cover ethnicity, Chinese diaspora, international migration, nationalism and transnationalism, China, and Southeast Asia. His current projects include “Transnational Knowledge Transfer and Dynamic Governance in Comparative Perspective,” "Plural Co-existence and Sustainable Development," and "Globalization, Brain Circulation and Competition for International Talents."
Asst. Prof Loh Ming Hui Dylan (PPGA) Dylan’s research focuses on Chinese diplomacy, ASEAN regionalism and the political effects of new technologies. He has two ongoing research projects. The first examines non-states and contested states conduct diplomacy and the second investigates the socio-political effects of cryptocurrencies and Central Bank Digital Currencies.  
Asst. Prof Nilay Saiya (PPGA) Nilay Saiya’s research interests include religion and global politics and religious violence. He has written on the connections between religious repression and various forms of political violence. He is author of Weapon of Peace: How Religious Liberty Combats Terrorism (2018), which argued that the suppression and not the expression of religion leads to violence and extremism. He is currently involved in a project examining how politics shapes rates of religious growth and decline.
Assoc. Prof Teo You Yenn (Sociology) Teo You Yenn's research interests are in poverty and inequality, governance and state-society dynamics, gender, and class. Ongoing projects focus on care/welfare regimes and how they shape ordinary people's lives, and household budgets for meeting basic needs. Teo is the author of Neoliberal Morality in Singapore: How family policies make state and society (Routledge, 2011) and This is What Inequality Looks Like (Ethos Books, 2018). She is a founding editor of AcademiaSG, which promotes Singapore scholarship and public discourse. More information about her work at: https://teoyouyenn.sg
Asst. Prof Ye Junjia (Sociology) Ye Junjia’s research and teaching interests lie at the intersections of migration studies, cultural diversity, and the political-economic development of urban Southeast Asia. Her recent work looks at the production of migrant subjectivities through state and community surveillance. Her work has been published in Progress in Human Geography, Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers, Annals of the American Association of Geographers and Environment and Planning D: Society and Space. Her first monograph, Class inequality in the global city: migrants, workers and cosmopolitanism in Singapore (2016, Palgrave Macmillan) won Labour History’s annual book prize.