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SEA Studies Symposium 2013 – Keynotes

9 – 10 March 2013
University of Oxford


Mark Pritchard MP (Chair of the All-Party Group for ASEAN in the UK Parliament)

Keynote: “The ASEAN Region: Global Competitors, Challengers, and Opportunities”

Mark Pritchard

Mark Pritchard is the Conservative MP for The Wrekin. He is Chairman for the Parliamentary Group for ASEAN in the UK Parliament.

He is a member of the UK’s Joint National Security Strategy Committee and a Member of the UK delegation to the NATO Parliamentary Assembly.  He is Vice Chairman of the Conservative Parliamentary Foreign Affairs and Defence Committee and is a Member of the International Development (DFID) Select Committee. Between 2010 – 2012 – he served as Vice Chairman of the Conservative Party’s International Office and Secretary of the 1922 Committee of backbench MPs.

He is also known for his work on Human Rights and was a founding member of the Conservative Party Human Rights Commission with Rt Hon William Hague, Foreign Secretary.

Mr Pritchard was named as one of London’s 1000 most influential people by the London Evening Standard in 2011.

He is a graduate of the Armed Forces Parliamentary Scheme (AFPS) – having spent time attached to the British Army as part of his annual commitment to the scheme.

His hobbies include walking in Shropshire, running, reading, and writing comedy – and writing socio-political commentary.


Prof. Datuk. Dr. Khairuddin Abdul Hamid (Vice Chancellor, UNIMAS)

Keynote: “UNIMAS and Borneo Studies: Past, Present and Future”

Dr Khairuddin

Dr. Khairuddin Abdul Hamid is the fourth and current Vice-Chancellor of Universiti Malaysia Sarawak (UNIMAS). He graduated with a PhD degree from University of Essex, United Kingdom in the field of Electronic Systems Engineering. He has served as a visiting professor at Waseda University, Japan to collaborate in a research project on wireless technology for distance learning. In 2001, he was presented with the “Information Technology Teacher” award by the Malaysian National Computer Confederation (MNCC). Currently he is still active in research projects related to rural informatics and wireless technology. He is the Project Leader for the National Pilot Project “eBario” in bridging the digital divide in Malaysia. Also, he was the Founding Dean, Faculty of Engineering and Founding Director for the Centre of Excellence on Rural Informatics (CoERI) at UNIMAS in 1993 and 2007, respectively. He is a member of various international and national committees on telecommunications, ICT education, and professional body such as Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE), Malaysia Section. He has served as the Chairman of Working Group 3 (Policy, Regulations and Special Projects) under the Asian Info-communications Council (AIC) for 7 years since 2001. Presently, he is the Chairman of the National ICT Human Resource Task Force and Chairman of the Technical Committee on the Collaboration between Malaysia and Infosys Technologies Ltd., India. He is also a member of the Malaysian National Steering Committee on Bridging the Digital Divide.


Prof. Dr. Musliar Kasim, M.S. (Deputy Minister for Education and Culture, Indonesia)

Musliar Kassim

Prof. Dr. Musliar Kasim, M.S., a native of Padang Ganting – West Sumatera, became the Vice Minister of Education Affairs for the Ministry of Education and Culture of the Republic of Indonesia on 19 October 2011. In 1983, he was named as the Outstanding Alumnus of Andalas University when he received his Bachelor’s degree in Agriculture. In 1987 he received his Master’s degree from Andalas University (cum laude), and in 1992 he received his Doctorate degree from the University of The Philippines Los Banos.

Musliar Kasim served as the President of the Andalas University in 2005 – 2011. He was the Provost of the Financial and Administration Affairs at the Andalas University in 2002 – 2005, and served as the Secretary of the Research Center at Andalas University in 1994 – 2000. He became a full professor of Agriculture at the Department of Agriculture of Andalas University in 1994. Musliar Kasim has served as the Inspector General of the Ministry of National Education from July – October 2011. His primary interests and publications include the “Budidaya of SRI (System of Rice Intensification)”. He was the founder of the ongoing Research Team for Wheat at Andalas University, collaborating with Slovakia.


The Right Honourable the Earl of Cranbrook

Keynote: “Borneo: Cave Swiftlets and the Edible-Nest Industry”

The speaker for the Southeast Asian Studies Symposium dinner on 9 March 2013 will be internationally renowned zoologist and environmental biologist Gathorne Gathorne-Hardy, the 5th Earl of Cranbrook. He will be speaking on the environment and Borneo/Kalimantan.

Lord Cranbrook





Lord Cranbrook’s PhD concerned the biology of cave swiftlets – the Southeast Asian birds that build edible nests – and, from 1956, his first professional posts were at institutions in that region. He has worked as a Technical Assistant at the Sarawak Museum (1956 – 1958), where inter alia he was charged with (a) investigating the edible-nest swiftlets, and (b) sorting and (as far as possible) identifying animal remains from the Museum’s archaeological digs, two projects that have provided a lifetime of research interest. From this start, his research interests have focussed on the taxonomy and ecology of Southeast Asian mammals and birds, and zooarchaeological study of vertebrate remains from local excavations. He subsequently was a postdoctoral fellow in Indonesia, and then worked at the University of Malaya (1961 – 1970).

He returned to the UK in 1970. He has subsequently held a mix of part-time positions in the voluntary, public and private sectors, including service as an elected Parish and District Councillor, a member of the Natural Environment Research Council, the Royal Commission on Environmental Pollution, trustee of the British Museum (Natural History), chairman of the Institute for European Environmental Policy, environmental adviser to the Esmee Fairbairn Foundation, and policy roles in the water and waste management industries. He has also been a recurrent returnee to Southeast Asia, on projects of all sorts, most recently (since 2009) as external adviser to Yayasan Ulin, a small conservation trust based in Kalimantan Timur.

In 1978, on the death of his father, he succeeded to a seat in the House of Lords, becoming the sixth generation of his family in a direct line to sit in the UK Parliament. In this position, he concentrated on the interface of environment and politics, serving on select committees for science & technology, and European environmental issues (three times chairing the environment subcommittee), until excluded by the 1999 Act. In 1985, he led the first large appeal for funds by ITZN, and from 2001 – 2008 he served as chairman of the Trust.

His publications include many scientific papers on Southeast Asian regional biology and zooarchaeology, and a dozen books including Mammals of Borneo (1965, revised edn 1977), The Wild Mammals of Malaya (Peninsular Malaysia) and Singapore (1969, 2nd edn 1978), Birds of the Malay Peninsula, vol. 5. (with D. R. Wells 1976), Mammals of South-East Asia (1987, 2nd edn 1991), Key environments: Malaysia (Ed. & contributor 1988), Belalong: a Tropical Rainforest (with D. S. Edwards, 1994), Wonders of Nature in South-East Asia (1997), Sya’ir Jerjezang (The Ballad of Jerjezang) (2000, reprint 2008), Swiftlets of Borneo: Builders of Edible Nests (with Lim Chan Koon 2002, 2nd edn 2013).

Another interesting fact: Gathorne Gathorne-Hardy, the 1st Earl of Cranbrook, was educated at Oriel College, and was later Member of Parliament for the University of Oxford from 1865 – 1878.