Myanmar's ongoing political reorganization comes with an array of revitalized institutions and a brand new capital city, Naypyitaw. Dr. Nicholas Farrelly discussed the official logic of the city, the voting behavior of its residents in recent elections, and its emerging cultural and commercial life, including an analysis of the Defense Services Historical Museum, built to showcase the official story of the armed forces. Dr. David Steinberg moderated the discussion and shared some of his insights on this topic.
Dr. Nicholas Farrelly is a Research Fellow in the College of Asia and the Pacific at the Australian National University (ANU). His academic interests are Southeast Asian societies; particularly the study of ethnic politics in Myanmar's borderlands. In 2006 he co-founded an academic website called New Mandala. Based at the ANU, it provides daily analysis of social, cultural and political issues in the Southeast Asian region, with particular attention to Thailand, Malaysia and Myanmar. After graduating from ANU with First Class Honors, he received his masters and doctorate from Balliol College, University of Oxford, where he was a Rhodes Scholar.
Dr. David I. Steinberg is Distinguished Professor of Asian Studies at Georgetown University and visiting scholar at the School of Advanced International Studies, Johns Hopkins University. Previously he was a Representative of the Asia Foundation in Korea, Hong Kong, Burma, and Washington; President of the Mansfield Center for Pacific Affairs, and served in the Senior Foreign Service for the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). A specialist on Burma-Myanmar, Korea, Southeast Asia and US policy in Asia, seven of his fourteen books are on Myanmar/Burma. Dr. Steinberg was educated at Dartmouth College, Lingnan University (Canton, China), Harvard University, and the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London.
Recorded at the East-West Center office in Washington, D.C., September 6, 2013.