Trans-Pacific Perspectives and the Princeton Experience

with Professor Ja Ian Chong
Mar 25, 2024, 4:30 pm6:00 pm
Princeton University Students, Faculty and Staff



Event Description

Ja Ian Chong *08 will discuss his experiences as a political scientist working on security issues covering Northeast and Southeast Asia, including U.S.-PRC ties and Taiwan. Drawing on experiences before arriving at, during, and after leaving Princeton, Chong's talk will cover his observations that arise from differing perspectives across the Pacific as well as the challenges of addressing tensions between academic research, policy-relevance, and public outreach. He will provide an overview of his current research on economic coercion, influence operations, disinformation, and cross-border nationalism in Southeast Asia and beyond.

About the Speaker 

Ja Ian Chong is a nonresident scholar at Carnegie China, Carnegie’s East Asia-based research center on contemporary China, where he examines U.S.-China dynamics in Southeast Asia and the broader Asia-Pacific. Chong is also an associate professor of political science at the National University of Singapore. He received his PhD from Princeton University in 2008 and previously taught at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. His research covers the intersection of international and domestic politics, with a focus on the externalities of major power competition, nationalism, regional order, security, contentious politics, and state formation. He also works on U.S.-China relations, security and order in Northeast and Southeast Asia, cross-strait relations, and Taiwan’s politics.
He was a 2019-20 Harvard-Yenching Visiting Scholar, 2013 Taiwan Fellow, 2012-13 East-West Center Asia Fellow, and a 2008-9 Princeton-Harvard China and the World Fellow. Chong’s current research examines how non-leading state behavior collectively intensifies major power rivalries, paying particular attention to the U.S.-China relationship. He has concurrent projects investigating how states react to sanctions on third parties by trade partners, and the characteristics of foreign influence operations. Chong has a longstanding interest in bridging academic, policy, and public discussions regarding these topics.
Chong is the author of External Intervention and the Politics of State Formation: China, Indonesia, Thailand, 1893-1952 (Cambridge, 2012), and a recipient of the 2013 International Security Studies Section Book Award from the International Studies Association. He has published in the China Quarterly, European Journal of International Relations, International Security, Security Studies, and Pacific Affairs, among other outlets. Chong is also an editor of AcademiaSG, which seeks to promote Singapore-related research.