pacific forum History of Pacific Forum

Comparative Connections Roundtable



Public Virtual Event


About This Event

The 10-member ASEAN bloc has come under strain. First in 2020 came the fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic and the restrictions used to contain it, both of which have had severe effects on Southeast Asian economies. Now, in 2021, with a post-COVID future in sight, the relevance of ASEAN as a decision-making body faces scrutiny, as the military coup in Myanmar and resulting instability threatens to spill over beyond the country’s borders. How does ASEAN view the crisis? What does the growing emphasis on the Quad and the attention to the South China Sea mean for Southeast Asia? Also, what can the administration in Washington do to promote stability in the region as it competes with China for influence? To answer these questions Pacific Forum has brought together an esteemed panel, authors of Comparative Connections chapters on Southeast Asia, for our first Comparative Connections Roundtable.


Dr. Catharin Dalpino is Professor Emeritus at Georgetown University, where she taught Southeast Asian Studies and launched the university’s Thai Studies Program. She has also taught at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies; George Washington University; Simmons College; Seton Hall University; and the State University of New York at Albany. From 1993 to 1997 Professor Dalpino was Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Democracy in the State Department’s Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor. She has also held positions at the United Nations in Geneva (1980) the World Bank (1981-2). Professor Dalpino has been a Fellow at the Brookings Institution; a Resident Associate at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace; an Associate at Georgetown University’s Institute for the Study of Diplomacy; a Visiting Scholar in Southeast Asian Studies at SAIS; and a Nonresident Senior Fellow at the Atlantic Council. From 1983 to 1993 she was a career officer with The Asia Foundation, and was the Foundation’s Representative for Thailand, Laos and Cambodia. She was the founding director of the Aspen Institute Program on Agent Orange in Vietnam (2007-2009).

Dr. Chin-Hao Huang is an Assistant Professor at Yale-NUS College. Chin-Hao Huang’s research and teaching focus on China’s foreign relations, the international relations of East Asia, and international security. He is the recipient of the Lee Kong Chian National University of Singapore-Stanford University Distinguished Fellowship on Contemporary Southeast Asia (2018-2019) and the American Political Science Association’s Foreign Policy Section Best Paper Award (2014). He is the author or co-author of three books, including his latest manuscript, Power, Restraint, and China’s Rise (Columbia University Press, 2022). His work has appeared or are forthcoming in International Organization, The China Quarterly, The China Journal, Asian Survey, Contemporary Southeast Asia, and International Peacekeeping, and in edited volumes through Oxford University Press and Routledge, among others. He has testified on China’s foreign affairs before the US-China Economic and Security Review Commission, US Congress. He has also served as a consultant for US and European foundations, governments, and companies on their strategies and policies in the Asia-Pacific. Until 2009, he was a researcher at the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, and prior to that worked with the Freeman Chair in China Studies at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, DC. His Doctor of Philosophy and Bachelor of Science are respectively from the University of Southern California and Georgetown University.

Dr. Robert Sutter is Professor of Practice of International Affairs at the Elliott School of George Washington University. He also served as Director of the School’s main undergraduate program involving over 2,000 students from 2013-2019. His earlier fulltime position was Visiting Professor of Asian Studies at Georgetown University (2001-2011). A Ph.D. graduate in History and East Asian Languages from Harvard University, Sutter has published 22 books (four with multiple editions), over 300 articles and several hundred government reports dealing with contemporary East Asian and Pacific countries and their relations with the United States. His most recent book is Chinese Foreign Relations: Power and Policy of an Emerging Global Force Fifth Edition (Rowman & Littlefield, 2021). Sutter’s government career (1968-2001) saw service as senior specialist and director of the Foreign Affairs and National Defense Division of the Congressional Research Service, the National Intelligence Officer for East Asia and the Pacific at the US Government’s National Intelligence Council, the China division director at the Department of State’s Bureau of Intelligence and Research and professional staff member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.