Learn more about our governance and management

The Sydney Southeast Asia Centre is managed by the Centre Director, who is supported by an Executive Committee, Country Coordinators and a Board of Management.

Strategic and operational management is vested in a Director who is supported by an Executive Committee composed of academic members associated with the Sydney Southeast Asia Centre, and the Country Coordinators. The Centre’s operations are overseen by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) and the Pro Vice-Chancellor (Global and Research Engagement). 


The Director serves as the Sydney Southeast Asia Centre’s manager and academic head. She or he is a senior academic specialising in any area of Southeast Asia, and a Professor of the University of Sydney.

The Director is ultimately responsible for the Sydney Southeast Asia Centre’s performance, including the delivery of its mission and goals, and the effective management of its resources to sustain and enhance its academic and outreach roles.

Our people

Professor Greg Fox

Director (Interim)

Greg Fox is the Director (Interim) of the Sydney Southeast Asia Centre, and a Professor of Respiratory Medicine in the Faculty of Medicine and Health. He is an international clinical trialist and epidemiologist whose research focuses upon tuberculosis (TB) and chronic lung disease. Over the past fifteen years, he has established a clinical research group in Vietnam which has conducted multicentre studies into the prevention and detection of TB in resource-limited settings. His research, in combination with evidence reviews for the World Health Organisation, have contributed to changes in global TB policies and clinical practice. Professor Fox alsoworks clinically as a Respiratory Physician at Sydney’s Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, and is Area Director for Tuberculosis Services for Sydney Local Health District. He is also strongly committed to building research capacity in Australia and internationally.

Dr Natali Pearson

Curriculum Coordinator

Natali Pearson is President of the Indonesia Council and a proud alumni of the Australian Consortium for In-Country Indonesian Studies (2000). She has worked at the University of Sydney since 2018, where she researches and teaches at the Sydney Southeast Asia Centre. Her research focuses on maritime heritage in Southeast Asia, and she is affiliated with the Discipline of Archaeology. She is co-founder of Perspectives on the Past at New Mandala, and a regular contributor to the media. Her book, Belitung: The Afterlives of a Shipwreck, is published by University of Hawai‘i Press and NUS Press.

The Director chairs an Executive Committee consisting of academic staff drawn from the membership. The Executive Committee is appointed by the Provost on the recommendation of the Director, and will serve a three-year term unless otherwise indicated by the Provost. The Executive Committee meets on average four times per year to provide advice and make recommendations to the Director on the Sydney Southeast Asia Centre’s:

  • strategic directions, outcomes and priorities
  • annual operating and action plans
  • allocation of internal grants
  • performance against strategic and operating KPIs and outcomes.

In addition, each member of the Executive Committee takes special responsibility for one of five areas of operation (community outreach; curriculum; policy and regional outreach; research; research training). In this capacity, they advise on, but also contribute to, Southeast Asia-related activities in their designated area.

Community Outreach Adviser

Associate Professor Justin Beardsley

Faculty of Medicine and Health / Sydney Institute for Infectious Diseases

Dr Sandra Seno-Alday

The University of Sydney Business School

Curriculum Adviser

Dr Susan Banki

Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Department of Sociology and Social Policy

Dr Abdul Razeed

The University of Sydney Business School

Regional and Policy Engagement Advisers

Professor Tihomir Ancev

Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Department of Economics

Research Advisers

Professor Sonja van Wichelen

Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Department of Sociology and Social Policy

Dr Sabin Zahirovic

Faculty of Science, School of Geosciences

Research Training Advisers

Dr Sophie Chao

Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Department of Anthropology

Associate Professor Petr Matous

Faculty of Engineering, School of Project Management

The Country Coordinators serve as focal points for activities related to each country in the region, as part of a committee chaired by the Director. They advise on strategic developments in different countries and bring together researchers across the University of Sydney who work in the eleven countries of the region.


Professor Daniel Tan

Faculty of Science


Associate Professor Jeffrey Neilson

Faculty of Science


Professor Nick Enfield

Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences

Malaysia and Brunei

Associate Lecturer Jake Chen

Sydney Pharmacy School


Dr Louis Taborda

Faculty of Engineering

The Philippines

Dr Aaron Opdyke

Faculty of Engineering


Dr Yeow-Tong Chia

Sydney School of Education and Social Work


Dr Aim Sinpeng

Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences


Dr Lynda-Ann Blanchard

Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences


Professor Tihomir Ancev

Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences