Skip to main content
Image of a globe

ASEAN Forum 2017

Women in ASEAN

In the 50th year of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, ASEAN Forum 2017 explores the role of women in our region; acknowledging accomplishments and shedding light on the challenges faced by women in Southeast Asia.

ASEAN Forum 2017 will bring together leading academic thinkers, activists and policy makers to discuss and debate the political, economic and social position of women in Southeast Asia and what is being done to advance the standing of women in the region. The forum will focus on women’s involvement in three key domains: work, politics and development.

When: 12–5pm, Friday 6 October 2017

Where: New Law School, Camperdown campus, University of Sydney

As part of ASEAN Forum 2017, two additional events will be held on 5 October 2017.

View the program booklet here.










Professor Stephen Garton, Provost and Deputy Vice-Chancellor


Keynote address

Women in ASEAN: Creating substantive empowerment 

Dr Kelly Gerard





Three Minute Thesis grandfinal



Parallel sessions


  • Women and politics


  • Dr Khin Mar Mar Kyi
  • Ms Nava Nuraniya
  • Associate Professor Maznah Mohamad
  • Women and work


  • Dr Do Quynh Chi
  • Dr Mary Barby Badayos-Jover
  • Professor Michele Ford
  • Women in development
  • Ms Ivonia Pinto Tsia
  • Ms Vichhra Mouyly
  • Ms Karen Mae Bantang


Cocktail function



Dr Kelly Gerard, Department of Political Science and International Relations, University of Western Australia

Women in ASEAN: Creating substantive empowerment 

Dr Kelly Gerard is Senior Lecturer in Political Science and International Relations at the University of Western Australia. Kelly’s research interests lie at the intersection of political participation and development policy, focusing on ASEAN’s engagement of civil society, as well as the determinants of aid programming for women’s empowerment. Kelly completed postdoctoral training at the Asia Research Centre, Murdoch University, and the Southeast Asia Research Centre, City University of Hong Kong. Kelly is an Endeavour Cheung Kong Award recipient, and a research associate of the Asia Research Centre, Murdoch University, and the Sydney Southeast Asia Centre, University of Sydney. Her research has been published in Globalizations, The Pacific Review, Contemporary Politics, and Asian Studies Review. Kelly is the author of ASEAN’s Engagement of Civil Society: Regulating Dissent (Palgrave 2014) and co-editor of the Palgrave series, Studies in the Political Economy of Public Policy (with Toby Carroll, Darryl Jarvis and Paul Cammack). 

Listen to the full keynote here.

Chaired by Dr Aim Sinpeng, Government and International Relations, University of Sydney

Dr Khin Mar Mar Kyi, Research Associate in Anthropology, University of Oxford

Globalisation, religion and women's leadership in transitional Myanmar 

Dr Ma Khin Mar Mar Kyi (Dr Mar) is the Excellence in Gender Research award-winning anthropologist and the inaugural Burmese and female Senior Research Fellow, at Lady Margaret Hall at the University of Oxford.  She is also the Daw Aung San Suu Kyi Senior Gender Research Fellow. She is currently co-investigator on an ESRC-funded project entitled Gender, Buddhist Nationalism, and Violence in a Political Transition in Myanmar.

Dr Mar has been a convener of the gender studies series and workshops at University of Oxford. She has written articles and book chapters, while her latest article, based on her extensive research in Rakhine state, is Women and Myanmar’s Religious Protection Laws: why are women supporting Myanmar’s Religious Protection Laws. She is also co-editor of The Oxford-Myanmar Policy Brief Series, University of Oxford.

Dr Mar led the Oxford University delegation visiting Myanmar for four consecutive years (2013-2016) producing a landmark memorandum, pledging collaboration to develop higher education standards in Burma. Dr Mar has provided several research methodology-training workshops in Myanmar to university lecturers and showcased a Gender Education curriculum workshop at the 96th Yangon University Anniversary.  She is also a member of The Oxford Research Centre in the Humanities and a Research Associate of Lady Margaret Hall

In addition to her academic work, Dr Mar is a Senior Advisor to Government and Non-Government organizations including Myanmar and United Nations. She is a co-founder of the Oxford-Myanmar Academic Initiatives, One-Women-Myanmar, and Fight against Trafficking and Exploitation (FATE) of women and children. Dr Mar is a winner of many prestigious awards including, the ‘Unsung Hero Award’ and the ‘UN 100 Years 100 Women Award’, Dreams of Dutiful Daughters documentary film award (2013). She serves as a Trustee and Board Member of many organisations including Oxford-Myanmar Academic Initiatives, E-Tekkatho, the Australian Myanmar Institute and is a Regional Lead of Oxford Analytica. She was one of the few International Election Observers of the 2015 elections in Myanmar.

Ms Nava Nuraniya, analyst at the Institute for Policy Analysis of Conflict (IPAC), Jakarta

Gender politics in Indonesian extremist groups

Nava Nuraniyah is an analyst at the Institute for Policy Analysis of Conflict (IPAC). Prior to joining IPAC, she worked as a terrorism analyst at the Centre of Excellence for National Security (CENS), a research unit of the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS), Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. She holds a Master of Arts in International Relations, with Honours, and a Master of Diplomacy, with distinction, from the Australian National University (ANU), where she received the James Ingram Prize for Excellence in Diplomatic Studies. She obtained a BA in International Relations from Muhammadiyah University Yogyakarta. Nava is also trained in Arabic and Islamic studies at various pesantrens (traditional Islamic boarding schools) in Java. Nava has published a number of articles for both academic journals and newspapers and spoke at various international conferences. Her research interests include religiously motivated terrorism, online extremism, women in jihadi community, and anti-Shia campaign in Indonesia.

Associate Professor Maznah Mohamad, Department of Malay Studies and Department of Southeast Asian Studies, National University of Singapore

Getting more women into formal politics in ASEAN: Some models in electoral reforms and their challenges

Maznah Mohamad is currently an Associate Professor with the Department of Malay Studies and the Department of Southeast Asian Studies, National University of Singapore. She was formerly Associate Professor with Universiti Sains Malaysia, Penang and Visiting ASEAN Chair at the Munk Centre for International Studies, University of Toronto. Her areas of teaching and research include Gender Studies, Religion in Southeast Asia, Malaysian Politics and the Politics of Islamisation. Her published books include Feminism and the Women’s Movement in Malaysia (co-authored, 2006), Melayu: The Politics, Poetics and Paradoxes of Malayness (co-edited, 2011), and Family Ambiguity and Domestic Violence in Asia (co-edited, 2013). Her recent journal publications have appeared in Pacific Affairs (2015), JMBRAS (2016), Kajian Malaysia: Journal of Malaysian Studies (2016) and Inter-Asia Cultural Studies (2017).

Chaired by Trisha Gray, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade

Dr Do Quynh Chi, Research Centre for Employment Relations, Vietnam

Female migrant workers in industrial zones and labour activism in Vietnam

Dr Do Quynh Chi is the co-founder and director of the Research Center for Employment Relations (ERC). She earned her doctorate in industrial relations from the University of Sydney, Australia. She has got 16 years of experience researching labour relations in Vietnam and has been publishing frequently on international journal articles.

Dr Chi is currently researching labour relations in the global value chains, gender issues in manufacturing industries, and labour law reform. 

Professor Mary Barby Badayos-Jover,  Director of Gender and Development Program, University of Philippines Visayas

Recasting the net: A focus on women in fisheries in the Philippines

Professor Mary Barby P. Badayos-Jover, PhD is currently the Director of the University of the Philippines Visayas’ Gender and Development Program. She is also the Coordinator of Ugsad, the Regional Gender Resource Center of Western Visayas in the Philippines and the current Vice President of the National Network on Women in Fisheries in the Philippines, Inc. Professor Badayos-Jover is likewise a certified member of the Philippine Commission on Women’s GAD Resource Pool. She was a Fulbright scholar and earned her Dual-Title PhD in Rural Sociology and Women’s Studies from the Pennsylvania State University, USA. She also holds an MA in Health Social Science from De La Salle University, Manila and an MM in Rural Development Management from UP Visayas. She took her BA Political Science and Psychology in UP Visayas and started teaching in the same university right after college. She has long been involved in gender mainstreaming advocacy as a faculty of the University of the Philippines Visayas, as well as a member of some women’s advocacy groups. Her research and advocacy interests include the intersections of gender, class and ethnicity in climate change discourses and interventions; gender(ed) concerns in disaster contexts; women’s agency in extremely difficult circumstances; and institutional dynamics in gender and development (GAD) mainstreaming.

Professor Michele Ford, Director of the Sydney Southeast Asia Centre, University of Sydney

Women and work in Indonesia

Michele Ford is Professor of Southeast Asian Studies and Director of the Sydney Southeast Asia Centre at the University of Sydney, where she holds an Australian Research Council Future Fellowship. Michele’s research interests focus on Southeast Asian labour movements, trade union aid, and trade union responses to labour migration in East and Southeast Asia. Michele is the author of Workers and Intellectuals: NGOs, Unions and the Indonesian Labour Movement (NUS/Hawaii/KITLV 2009) and (co)-editor of several volumes including Beyond Oligarchy: Wealth, Power, and Contemporary Indonesian Politics (Cornell SEAP 2014) and Social Activism in Southeast Asia (Routledge 2013). In addition to her academic work, Michele has a strong record of disciplinary service and extensive consultancy experience for the Australian Government and the international labour movement.

Chaired by Dr Jacqueline Thomas, Humanitarian Engineering, University of Sydney

Ms Ivonia Pinto Tsia, Centre of Studies for Peace and Development, Timor-Leste

Timorese women are strong advocates against the corrupt behaviours that negatively impact upon the lives of them and their families.  

Ivonia is presently the Coordinator for Anti–Corruption Department at the Centre of Studies for Peace and Development (CEPAD) in Timor-Leste. Previously, she was the lead researcher for the Women’s Access to Justice in Plural Legal Systems Project which focused on women’s ownership to land and property in Timor-Leste. She has been working at CEPAD for the past five years. She has extensive experience working in advance policy analysis and evaluation. She has the innate ability to link theoretical approaches with pragmatic policy evaluations and recommendations.

Part of her work includes Adapting the Participatory Action Research  (PAR) tools, mechanisms and techniques that can best engage the participation of communities including individuals, women’s groups, government officials, youths, traditional leaders and the Church.

Ivonia works in coordination with the District Liaison Officers throughout the 13 Municipalities in Timor-Leste and with 38 KKN (Corruption Collusion and Nepotism) Focal Points. She organises dialogues including informal and formal meetings, thematic workshops at the Municipality and National levels for data gathering and empowering the community about their rights in relations to Corruption.

Ms Vichhra Mouyly, International Labour Organisation, Cambodia

Working conditions in Cambodian factories put high pressure on women’s reproductive role.

Ms. Mouyly Vichhra has nearly 10 years of professional experience in the apparel industry and three years of experience as a Trainer and Enterprise Advisor with International Labour Organization/ Better Factories Cambodia. Vichhra has a strong passion for fashion along with an excellent understanding of working conditions, industrial relations, and labour dispute settlement. Prior to her employment with BFC, she worked as a Legal Officer at the Arbitration Council Foundation where she provided support to hundreds of labour dispute cases from various sectors in Cambodia. Vichhra has also been invited as an international speaker in the areas of women and development on many occasions. She is a co-author of a famous journal article on employment relations and political transition in Cambodia, published by the Journal of Industrial Relations Australian Labour and Employment Relations Association. Vichhra hold a Master degree from the University of Melbourne (Australia) in Employment and Labour Relations Law, a Bachelor’s Degree of Law from the Royal University of Law and Economics, and a Bachelor’s Degree of English literature from the University of Cambodia.

Ms Karen Mae Bantang, Commission on Human Rights the Philippines

Women's empowerment and gender equality opportunities in all public policies and programs are the key to promoting and protecting the welfare and development of women in the Philippines

Karen Mae Bantang has been working for the Commission on Human Rights of the Philippines since 2009. She's been with the Strategic and Development Planning Office of the agency for 6 years before moving to the Center for Gender Equality and Women's Human Rights. She has been involved with the administrative support and technical tasks of the Center's activities for the last 18 months, including the conduct of trainings, meetings, referral of complaints and has also been part of the major activities such as the CHRP's National Inquiry on Reproductive Health Right with funding from the UNFPA, and a Consultation for the Amendment of CEDAW General Recommendation 19, in partnership with the Women's Legal Bureau. 

Karen completed a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science at the University of the Philippines, Manila and is currently taking up her Masters in Strategic Public Relations in the University of Sydney under the Australian Awards Scholarship. 

ASEAN Forum 2017 women

ASEAN Forum 2016 Keynote: Where China meets Southeast Asia

Dr Alice Ba, University of Delaware

0 sec /