CSIS Launches New Southeast Asia Roundtable Series

WASHINGTON, April 12, 2021: The Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) is pleased to announce the launch of the CSIS‐Derwin Pereira Southeast Asia Roundtable. This five-year initiative, established with the support of business leader Derwin Pereira, will provide a platform for U.S.-based policymakers and experts to candidly exchange views with visiting Southeast Asian officials, business leaders, and academics. These discussions will aim to inform U.S. policy toward the region—a zone of competition for U.S. and Chinese influence.

Gregory B. Poling, senior fellow for Southeast Asia at CSIS, will lead the new roundtable series. “This initiative comes at a crucial time. U.S. relations with partners in Southeast Asia are more important—and more complicated—than ever,” he said. “By bringing together leading voices from the region to share their insights with counterparts in Washington, this series will help shape strategic thinking during the important early days of the new U.S. administration. Derwin’s support makes possible this important framework for discussion and analysis.”

As a core part of this new initiative, CSIS will host a series of roundtable discussions examining topics of strategic significance to both the United States and its Southeast Asian partners, the first of which will take place in mid-2021. These conversations will cover security dynamics in Southeast Asia, economics and trade, technology, and more. Findings from these discussions will inform written analyses and publications by the CSIS Southeast Asia Program, the premier forum for high-level policy dialogue on U.S. relations with the region.

Derwin Pereira has followed developments in Southeast Asia since 1995. He was as an award-winning journalist and U.S. bureau chief with the Straits Times before founding Pereira International, a Singapore-based strategic advisory firm. CSIS previously partnered with him in 2012 and again in 2015 on the Derwin Pereira Indonesia Initiative, a speaker series focused on key issues relating to Indonesia’s foreign policy, trade and investment, and social development.

Pereira’s connection to Southeast Asia is more personal. “I discovered myself here,” he says. “Now, I want others to understand my region.”

###

The Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) is a bipartisan, nonprofit policy research organization dedicated to advancing practical ideas to address the world’s greatest challenges.