Digital Conference: The Indo-Pacific Operating System
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Digital Conference: The Indo-Pacific Operating System

The digital conference The Indo-Pacific Operating System: Power, Order and Rules for the 21st Century was hosted by the Lowy Institute on 1-2 December 2021.

Opening Session: Kurt Campbell in conversation with Michael Fullilove

The White House Indo-Pacific Coordinator Kurt Campbell speaks with Lowy Institute Executive Director Michael Fullilove about US-China relations, AUKUS and Australia's bilateral relationship with China.

Panel 1: Competing visions

Panellists discuss convergences and divergences in Indo-Pacific countries’ conceptions of regional order. They debate US and Chinese approaches to the region with particular focus on Taiwan, the India-China border dispute, and centrifugal pressures on ASEAN.


Ben Scott, Director, Australia’s Security and the Rules-Based Order Project, Lowy Institute


Elina Noor - Director, Political-Security Affairs and Deputy Director, Washington, D.C. Office Asia Society Policy Institute

Professor Wu Xinbo -  Director, Center for American Studies, Fudan University Professor and Dean, Institute of International Studies, Fudan University

Tanvi Madan - Director, The India Project; Senior Fellow, Project on International Order and Strategy, The Brookings Institution

Panel 2: New rules?

Panellists debate whether the Indo-Pacific needs new institutions, rules and norms to accommodate or constrain power shifts in the region with particular focus on the US, China, the EU, Japan and Australia. They discuss the ASEAN-centred regional architecture, AUKUS, the Quad, the Law of the Sea, the South China Sea, liberal democratic values and free trade.


Hervé Lemahieu, Director of Research, Lowy Institute


Akiko Fukushima - Senior Fellow at the Tokyo Foundation for Policy Research and Nonresident Fellow, Lowy Institute

Dr Bec Strating - Executive Director of La Trobe Asia, Associate Professor in Politics and International Relations, Department of Politics, Media and Philosophy

Richard Maude - Executive Director Policy, and Senior Fellow, Asia Society Policy Institute

Lecture: China's vision for a new world order

Nadège Rolland outlines China’s dissatisfaction with the current order, objectives for change and views of Australia.


Nadège Rolland, Senior Fellow, Political and Security Affairs The National Bureau of Asian Research and Nonresident Fellow, Lowy Institute

Panel 3: Hard power and regional order

This session opens with a speech from Australian Defence Minister Peter Dutton, followed by panellists discussing how military power supports and weakens regional order as well as how regional institutions and groupings shape the deployment of military power.


Hon. Peter Dutton MP, Minister for Defence

introduced by Dr Michael Fullilove AM, Executive Director, Lowy Institute

Panel discussion - convenor

Lesley Seebeck - Honorary Professor, Cybersecurity Australian National University


Lisa Curtis - Fellow and Director of the Indo-Pacific Security Program Center for a New American Security (CNAS)

Evan Laksmana - Senior Research Fellow, Centre on Asia and Globalisation at the National University of Singapore’s Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy

Greg Moriarty - Secretary, Australian Department of Defence

Areas of expertise: Strategy and geopolitics; global governance; Australian foreign policy; Southeast Asia; Data analysis
Areas of expertise: Australian national security policy; International rules and norms; US foreign policy; the Middle East
Areas of expertise: Disinformation, inauthentic behaviour, grey zone operations, propaganda, soft power, information warfare, broadcast and social media, information resilience.