Ben Bland

Director, Southeast Asia Program
Areas of expertise

Southeast Asian politics and foreign policy; South China Sea; regional economic trends; China-ASEAN relations; Indonesia; Malaysia; Vietnam; Hong Kong

Ben Bland
Biography
Publications
News and media

Ben Bland is a former Director of the Southeast Asia Program at the Lowy Institute. He is the author of Man of Contradictions: Joko Widodo and the Struggle to Remake Indonesia (Penguin Random House, 2020), the first English language political biography of Indonesia’s president, and Generation HK: Seeking Identity in China’s Shadow (Penguin Random House, 2017).

At the Lowy Institute, he also wrote analysis papers examining the state of Indonesian democracy and the potential for the Australia-India-Indonesia trilateral relationship, among other research projects.

Ben regularly writes opinion pieces for and provides expert comment to a wide range of international media organisations, including Bloomberg, Foreign Policy, the New York TimesNikkei Asia and Reuters.

Before joining the Lowy Institute, Ben was an award-winning foreign correspondent for the Financial Times, with postings in Jakarta, Hanoi and Hong Kong and experience reporting across China and Southeast Asia over the previous decade. He has an MA in Southeast Asian Studies from the School of Oriental and African Studies at the University of London and an undergraduate degree in History from the University of Cambridge.

Ben’s position was supported by the Lowy Institute’s Engaging Asia Project, which was established with the financial support of the Australian Government.

Policy Briefs
Emerging from COVID: Policy Responses to the Pandemic
Lowy Institute experts provide policy recommendations for Australia to address issues that are critical to our nation's — and the world's — successful emergence from the pandemic.
Commentary
Investors will lose as Beijing squeezes Hong Kong
Originally published in the Australian Financial Review.
Commentary
Why Beijing feels compelled to destroy Hong Kong’s freedom
Originally published in the Sydney Morning Herald. 
Commentary
Hong Kong's new 'Basic Law' is that whatever China says, goes
Judges alone cannot protect territory from Beijing's heavy-handed interventions. Originally published in Nikkei Asian Review.
New crackdown will deepen dividing lines in Hong Kong
New crackdown will deepen dividing lines in Hong Kong
Both the Chinese Communist Party and the Hong Kong democracy movement are settling in for a long and painful struggle.
Analyses
The World After COVID
How will the COVID-19 pandemic change the world? Lowy Institute experts provide their analysis.
COVIDcast Episode 6: Geopolitics and the pandemic
COVIDcast Episode 6: Geopolitics and the pandemic
The latest episode in a podcast to discuss the implications of coronavirus for Australia, the region, and the world.
The World After COVID‑19
Interactives
The World After COVID‑19
  How will the coronavirus pandemic change the world? Lowy Institute experts provide their analysis.
COVIDcast Episode 6: Geopolitics and the coronavirus pandemic
Podcasts
COVIDcast Episode 6: Geopolitics and the coronavirus pandemic
COVIDcast is a Lowy Institute pop-up podcast for anyone interested in understanding the effect of coronavirus on global politics. Each week for the next few weeks, Lowy Institute…
Top