Select Page

Robert Anderson, Development & Sustainability Program, Faculty of Environment, Simon Fraser University, Vancouver

Late this year Myanmar will stage elections, again. There are welcome changes which make this time quite different from the earlier two contests. Reflecting further back ten years, however, even those limited changes were very hard to foresee. Anderson will review some of the factors which brought about the new political phase (2010-2014), risk an analysis of the next nine months, and try to forecast the long game. However, the Asian neighborhood in which Myanmar’s development occurs has become even more complicated than it was during the ‘new phase’ (2010-2014). As a specialist in the political-economy of resources and environment, Anderson will explain why Myanmar’s long game has to depend on a very different approach, even if environmental policy and law are currently taking a back seat.

Anderson will also briefly describe the creation of an Environmental Studies Program at the University of Yangon, and a national Climate Change Working Group. These efforts reveal that although it is difficult to negotiate change, it is nevertheless possible.

Robert Anderson (PhD in anthropology, University of Chicago, 1971) is working to build a network of young environmentalists in Myanmar. He has spent a month in the country every year since 1999. His published work includes books on tropical forestry in India and the World Bank, rice cultivating systems and the green revolution in Asia, and the nuclear history of India.

Lunch will be served.

Cosponsored with the Harvard Asia Center Modern Asia Seminar