Thailand: A Nation in the Making

Thitinan Pongsudhirak, International Visitor 2009-10, Stanford Humanities Center,Chulalongkorn University and Institute of Security and International Studies, Thailand

NOTE: Open only to faculty, Stanford students and affiliates
Co-sponsored by the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies

Thailand is stuck in a protracted political crisis as the twilight of its ailing 82-year-old King Bhumibol Adulyadej's remarkable reign comes to an end. At stake in this unfolding endgame is a new nation in the making, with far-reaching ramifications for developing democracies elsewhere. As Thailand undergoes its most cathartic transformation in decades, a new consensus in its color-coated crisis will need to be found if the country is to regain its footing. This talk sets out to delineate the contours, dynamics, and prospects of what lies ahead for Thailand and why its fate matters to Southeast Asia and beyond.

Since 2006, Pongsudhirak has held an associate professorship in international relations at Thailand's premier institution of higher education, Chulalongkorn University, while simultaneously heading the Institute of Security and International Studies, the country's leading think tank on foreign affairs. For ten years, in tandem with his academic career, Pongsudhirak worked as an analyst for The Economist's Intelligence Unit. He has written on bilateral free-trade areas in Asia, co-authored a book on Thailand's trade policy, and is admired by Southeast Asianist historians for having insightfully revisited, in a 2007 essay, the sensitive matter of Thailand's role during World War II.

Friday, March 05, 2010 | 12:00 pm — 1:30 pm
The Board Room, Stanford Humanities Center

Stanford Humanities Center