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SEA Studies Symposium 2018 – Call for Panels and Papers

“What is Southeast Asia? Exploring Uniqueness and Diversity”

22–24 March 2018

at Universitas Indonesia

in collaboration with

School of Environmental Science,
Universitas Indonesia

Indonesia Environmental Scientists Association


Project Southeast Asia invites proposals for Panels and Papers for the 7th Annual Southeast Asian Studies Symposium at Indonesian Medical Education and Research Institute (IMERI), Universitas Indonesia, from 22-24 March 2018.

The deadline for proposals has passed and no more proposals are being accepted.

You will find detailed instructions for submissions, and more detailed information about the conference below. If you have any questions, please email

Download a one page leaflet or the full Call for Panels & Papers instructions.

Please read the following carefully for more information:


Themes of the Symposium

The theme of the 2018 Southeast Asian Studies Symposium is “What is Southeast Asia? Exploring Uniqueness and Diversity”. While panels and workshops on this theme will be particularly welcomed, the Symposium will also accept panels and papers on any topic relating to Southeast Asia.

Sub-themes include (but are not limited to):

  • The Environment, Natural Resources, and Climate Change
  • Ecosystems
  • Sustainable Development
  • Urbanisation
  • Public Health
  • Migration and Refugees
  • Governance and Politics
  • Culture, Identity, and Regional Diversity
  • Gender and Community Engagement

Aims of the Symposium

The Symposiumt Asia has three aims:

  • To present solutions for contemporary Southeast Asian issues by bringing together the brightest minds from all fields and disciplines, and from around the world. Its core goal is to promote the integration of the humanities and social sciences with science, medicine, and business in order to create solutions which are effective, viable, and appropriate to culture and geography.
  • To build networks and relationships between current and future decision-makers in Europe and Southeast Asia, as well as connections among academia, government, civil society/NGOs, and business. Integral to the Symposium will be opportunities for Southeast Asian and European politicians, corporate leaders, academics, and NGOs to interact and build relationships.
  • To promote the research of the most talented scholars of Southeast Asia and offer a platform for young academics to present their work.

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Proposal Selection Criteria

Panels focusing on any topics relating to Southeast Asia are welcome. In particular, panels which focus on one or more of the following are highly encouraged:

a) Contemporary Southeast Asian issues, in particular relating to (but not limited to) the theme above;
b) Transnational Southeast Asian studies;
c) Interdisciplinary approaches and collaborations;
d) Methodological issues relating to Southeast Asian studies.

Multi-disciplinary and/or multi-institutional representation is strongly encouraged for all proposals. Young and emerging scholars are particularly encouraged to advance panel proposals.

The Organising Committee also supports innovative formats that will encourage effective communication, lively dialogue, and audience involvement. Some examples of novel formats:

  • Panellists are invited to post the full text of their papers online prior to the panel, and are allocated three minutes during the panel itself to summarise their arguments. This is followed by presentations by discussants, and then questions from the audience.
  • Commentators begin by summarising and commenting on papers. Paper authors then reply to these comments.
  • Knowledgeable members of the audience are encouraged to prepare comments of their own, with focused audience commentary early in the discussion.
  • A single major paper, film, or book launching is the subject of attention on which other papers and all commentary are focused.
  • Panels based on a clash of perspectives, interpretations, or methodologies.

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Proposal Guidelines

1. The Symposium is primarily a panel-based conference, and Academic Paper Panels, Roundtables, and Workshops will be given preference in the review process over Individual Paper proposal submissions.

2. Session length: Each session will last a minimum of 90 minutes. Double session panel proposals may be submitted, but each session requires a separate proposal which will be reviewed on its own merits; acceptance and/or sequential scheduling cannot be guaranteed. For an idea of the timing of sessions, please see the programme for the 2016 Symposium.

3. There are three session types:

a. Academic Paper Panels: Academic paper panels should consist of a minimum of three (3) and a maximum of four (4) paper presenters, and a chair and/or a discussant. Proposals should include panel and paper titles as well as abstracts of not more than 250 words. Abstracts are required for the overall panel and for each paper.

b. Roundtables should have a minimum of three (3) and a maximum five (5) discussants and one (1) chair. The goal of the roundtable is to foster a lively and informed discussion on a single issue from diverse viewpoints, especially practitioner and other non-academic views, with a maximum of audience participation – think along the lines of BBC’s “Question Time”. Proposals should include the roundtable title, an abstract of not more than 400 words detailing the roundtable discussion, and a description of how each panellist will contribute to the discussion.

c. Workshops are a more interactive format with a practical focus. They will bring together government, academic, business, and civil society leaders in a discussion centred on a specific issue that aims to produce concrete policy recommendations. Interactions from the audience are also highly encouraged. Proposals should list one (1) chair, one (1) rapporteur, a minimum of three (3) leaders from at least two of the above categories, a 250 word outline of the issue to be addressed, and a list of questions or an agenda to guide discussion.

Preference will be given to workshops which a) draw together a wider range of expertise from different fields and nationalities; and b) address a clearly defined, tightly focused issue. The rapporteur must submit a report that includes policy recommendations for governments and other interested parties, by 15 June 2018, to Project Southeast Asia. The report will be included in any Symposium report, downloadable from the website, and distributed to Symposium participants and other interested parties.

4. Individual paper proposals must include an abstract of not more than 250 words. It is not required to submit a full paper in advance. Please keep in mind that the Symposium is primarily a panel-based conference, and panels will be given preference in the review process over individual paper proposal submissions. Our experience from previous Symposia (as well as participant feedback) has also demonstrated that accepting individual papers produces highly unpredictable results. Thus our acceptance rate for individual papers is low. Acceptance rates for panels are significantly higher and we urge you to organise a panel in order to maximise your chances of acceptance.

5. If you are looking for a panel to join or for people to join your panel, we suggest you list yourself at our linkage page or our facebook page.

Please note: Individuals may present on one (1) panel session of each type only; they may, however, serve as Chairs or Discussants of an unlimited number of other panels. Organisers are not considered ‘participants’ and therefore may organise more than one panel session.

6. Proposals must be complete at time of submission. Minor changes to the title or abstract, or replacement participants are allowed but additional participants and adding co-authors are not allowed after the panel has been accepted. The Organising Committee reserves the right to reject panels if the final panel composition differs substantially from the original proposal. Final details of all panels must be confirmed by 15 January 2018.

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Timeline for Proposals

28 July 2017: Call for Panels and Papers opens.

15 October 2017: Call for Panels and Papers closes. ALL proposals, including Academic Paper Panels, Roundtables, Workshops, and Individual Papers, must be submitted by the 15 October 2017 deadline.

1 November 2017: Panel organisers notified of selection outcome.

20 November 2017: Registration for the Symposium opens.

15 January 2018: Final details of all sessions are due; Deadline for applications for registration waivers.

15 February 2018: Registration for the Symposium closes.

22-24 March 2018: Southeast Asian Studies Symposium 2018

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Registration Fee Waivers

Registration fee waivers are limited to participants in accepted panels. The submission, confirmation, and registration dates are designed to allow participants sufficient time to apply for grants from other sources.

Registration fee waivers will be considered on an exceptional case-by-case basis for those in genuine financial need. Proof of financial circumstances will be requested.

Participants must be nominated by their panel organiser to qualify for a registration fee waiver. Organisers may nominate one (1) panel member for a waiver. In order to apply for a registration fee waiver, panel organisers must first submit a complete proposal application. A registration fee waiver request maybe then be submitted after the proposal has been accepted by writing to All nominations for registration fee waivers must be received by 15 January 2018. Successful applicants will be notified by 1 February 2018.


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Frequently Asked Questions

1. Deadline for proposal submission

2. One-Appearance Rule

3. Proposal Submission & Acceptance

4. Travel Grants and Registration Fee Waivers?

5. Registration for Participants

6. Miscellany


When is the deadline for submitting a proposal for the 2018 Southeast Asian Studies Symposium?

The proposal submission deadline is 15 October 2017.

Can I participate on more than one panel?

Individuals may present on only one panel at the conference. You may act as Chair/Discussant on multiple panels and organise multiple panels.

Can I serve as a Chair/Discussant on one panel and present a paper on another panel?

Yes, provided you only present on one panel, you can act as Chair/Discussant for other panels.

Can I serve as Chair/Discussant and present a paper on the SAME panel?

Yes, you may serve multiple roles within one panel. For example, an individual may serve as Chair and Discussant, or Chair and Paper Presenter on the SAME panel.

I am an organiser of a panel. Can I present a paper on another panel?

Yes, there is no limit to the number of panels an individual can organise. Organisers may participate in the role of Chair, Presenter or Discussant on a separate panel from the original Organised Panel, but may present on only one panel.

We have submitted a “two-part”/”back-to-back” panel. Does the one appearance rule apply here considering this really is the same panel but scheduled in two parts?

The committee will treat a “two-part”/”back-to-back” panel as two separate panels. The acceptance of both proposed panels essentially takes a slot from another panel that, for example, may not have been accepted due to space constraints. Therefore in the effort of fairness, “two-part” or “back to back” panels cannot contain the same individuals from the related panel.

Why is the Symposium Organising Committee so strict regarding the one appearance rule?

The Organising Committee would like to give as many individuals the opportunity to participate each year. Limiting the number of appearances assists us in accomplishing this goal. Additionally, the Organising Committee has the challenge of balancing and scheduling dozens of panels. The one appearance rule also helps us to minimise scheduling conflicts.

I am an organiser of a panel. May I make changes to the panel abstract after I have submitted the proposal?

Yes, organisers are allowed to make changes to the panel proposal after submission anytime before the 15 October 2017 submission deadline. Please email to make changes. No changes to the abstract are permitted after 15 January 2018.

May panel members participate remotely, e.g. using Skype?

We strongly discourage this, as one fundamental goal of the Symposium is to bring people together. If the panel organiser decides to permit this, they are solely responsible for all technical aspects of the presentation and discussion.

Do I need to submit my full paper?

The Organising Committee does not require or accept full papers for the Symposium. We do not publish, print, or sell papers. However, the abstracts from upcoming panel sessions and those from previous Symposia are posted on our website.

How/when will I be notified if my proposal has been accepted?

The Organising Committee will meet and send out notifications in early October via e-mail.

My proposal has been accepted. What happens next?

All individuals whose proposals have been accepted by the Organising Committee for inclusion in the conference are now considered participants. All participants will receive an information pack regarding their participation and next steps, including registration information and full panel information.

May I make changes to my panel once it has been accepted by the Organising Committee?

The Organising Committee will only accept the following changes to panels after acceptance: 1) personal address and affiliation information, 2) panel/paper title and minor abstract edits and updates, 3) replacement names for participants who have withdrawn from the panel. We will not accept NEW and additional names to be added to the panel, including new co-author names that were not on the original submission. All changes must be sent to the Organising Committee directly at

Does the Symposium Organising Committee offer travel grants?


Does the Symposium Organising Committee offer registration fee waivers and how do I apply?

Panel organisers may nominate one (1) panel member to receive a fee waiver. Fee waivers are granted based solely on need (e.g. students/low-income/unwaged). All travel grant requests must be received by the 15 January 2018 deadline. A grant request should be submitted by the panel organiser to following the proposal submission. Organisers will receive a separate email confirmation of the grant request submission.

When is the registration deadline for participants?

All participants must register by 15 February 2018.

Why must all participants register in advance? Can a participant register on the day of the Symposium itself?

It is unfair to both presenters and other registered delegates to attend panels with only one or two presenters. Therefore, if presenters fail to register in advance, we will assume they are not coming. This will give us time to reschedule papers to ensure that all panels have at least three papers. Thus, we must insist that all participants register by 15 February 2018.

Does the Symposium provide audio-visual equipment?

All session rooms will have a LCD projector and screen. Microphones will be provided for larger rooms and for roundtable discussions.

It is the responsibility of panel participants to bring their own laptop computers (and in the case of Apple laptops, a VGA adapter to connect with the projector cord) and/or arrange and pay for additional equipment and services needed. The Symposium Organising Committee regrets it cannot assist in these preparations.

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How to Submit a Proposal

Submissions will be accepted in English only.

The deadline for submissions has passed and no more submissions are being accepted. Please read all the information above before submitting a proposal.

The Symposium will also offer alternative opportunities outside formal panel sessions. These include rooms for group meetings/discussions/project debates and an area for the display of posters or exhibitions. All suggestions are welcome. Please email if you are interested in any of the above.

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