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Collaborative Governance in the Assoc. of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN)

By Carlo Delantar, Sam Ramos-Jones and Kevin dela Cruz

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A multi-awarded serial and social entrepreneur, philanthropist and humanitarian based in the Philippines. A political researcher, writer, and digital content curator, advocating for the democratization of public policy discussions in the Philippines. A multi-faceted development professional working as a social entrepreneur, program manager, enterprise consultant, management trainer, social enterprise researcher and professor.

On Sunday, January 15, 2017 President Rodrigo Roa Duterte launched the Philippines’ chairmanship of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). Speaking in front of hundreds of local and foreign dignitaries in his hometown, Davao, the controversial firebrand Philippine President outlined his goals as ASEAN Chairman: “We will place our peoples at the core; work for regional peace and stability; pursue maritime security and cooperation; advance inclusive, innovation-led growth; strengthen ASEAN resiliency; and promote ASEAN as a model of regionalism and as a global player."1

 

2017 marks the 50th anniversary of the formation of ASEAN – a regional bloc now consisting of ten nations: Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam. ASEAN, as a region, stands to dramatically transform the economic and political landscape not just in Asia, but also in the world. Already, in Philippine foreign policy, President Duterte has demonstrated a willingness to upend traditional alliances and seek a ‘third way,’ which may underscore his approach to ASEAN leadership – a regional bloc that has hitherto failed to realize its full potential.Economically, ASEAN represents a potential agricultural, manufacturing, and services powerhouse. On the political front, a close association of the ten ASEAN member states could present a critical counterweight to the outsized influence of an ascendant China among uncertainties and a perceived decline of American influence in the region.

 

Despite the tremendous promise in the region, there are significant challenges to overcome on the road to success. While the ASEAN region has enjoyed remarkable economic growth of late – “around 5% a year for nearly two decades"– that growth has not been distributed equitably; recent research from the World Economic Forum (WEF), suggests that inequality has been rising in much of ASEAN during this same period.4 Additionally, the industries that have helped spur much of this growth – agriculture, manufacturing, and basic services, will likely all come under threat from the disruptive trends unleashed by the Fourth Industrial Revolution – namely automation and artificial Intelligence (AI).

 

While heralded as one of the region’s chief characteristics and strengths, the immense diversity, among religions, ethnic groups, languages, and systems of governance, may pose significant barriers to a smooth integration. For the ASEAN bloc to reach its full potential, it will require an unprecedented level of collaboration and cooperation among its members. Indeed, the central message of the President Duterte’s keynote address was that success would depend on “the collective work” of the entire ASEAN membership.5 Furthermore, collaboration, not just among governments, but also between governments and the governed – businesses and citizens – will be crucial in this era of disruptive change.

 

 

ASEAN: A Brief History

 

The Association of Southeast Asian Nations was originally founded fifty years ago, on August 8, 1967. The foundation of ASEAN was motivated principally out of shared security and economic concerns. The five founding members: Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, and Thailand, “believed that, like many other international organizations, functional structural integration would facilitate enhanced regional economic prosperity and security cooperation,”especially as a bulwark against communist expansion in the region.

 

Since the end of the Cold War, this original mandate has remained largely intact. While the threat of communist expansion has all but dissipated, ASEAN has been an important mechanism for regional stability by providing a formal diplomatic and economic forum for resolving regional disputes and competing interests, thereby limiting counterproductive competition in the region. Since its formation, membership to the bloc has doubled, “enhanc[ing] ASEAN’s voice in international affairs by making the region more cohesive”7 and by making Southeast Asia more attractive to foreign investment.

 

Despite these successes, ASEAN remains institutionally weak in many respects. Part of that weakness is due to the bloc’s relatively limited charter. At ASEAN’s inception, and indeed for much of its history, excluding the most recent one or two decades, its members’ powerful autocratic leaders had dominated the organization: Mahathir Mohamad, Lee Kuan Yew, Ferdinand Marcos, Suharto, and Prem Tinsulanond.8 While the original mandate was to ensure geopolitical stability in the region, these leaders had little interest in surrendering any of their power and national sovereignty to a supranational organization. Consequently, “they purposefully made ASEAN strong enough to help prevent more Southeast Asian wars,” but also ensured that it would never become powerful enough to dictate policy to individual members.

 

This legacy of institutional weakness is best encapsulated by the “ASEAN Way,” whereby unanimous consensus is required by all member states before regional policy initiatives can be enacted. Effectively, any one member state wields a ‘veto’ power over the rest of the bloc. The ASEAN Secretariat, headquartered in Jakarta, is weak both in its size, and capabilities – it’s staff is one-tenth that of the European Commission’s (EC), and is also smaller than the African Union’s (AU).9 These legacies of institutional weakness will have to be dramatically reformed if ASEAN is to harness its vast potential and take a leading role as the Fourth Industrial Revolution unfolds in the region and across the globe.

 

 

Potential as an Economic Superpower

 

“Without question,” boasts a recent WEF report entitled, Shaping the ASEAN Agenda for Inclusion and Growth, “South-East Asia is full of opportunity and potential."10 Indeed, the demographics of the region are promising. ASEAN’s population is an impressive 630 million – almost twice that of the U.S., or 10% of the global population.11 More than half of ASEAN’s people are under 30 years old.12 This large, growing, and young population could present the region with certain ‘demographic dividends. Compared to most of Europe, the U.S., China, and Japan, ASEAN will enjoy a superior ratio between its working age population and those too young or too old to work. Furthermore, the region currently enjoys some of the world’s highest rates of digital adoption, a trend that is likely to continue at an accelerating pace, indicating the potential to thrive in the Fourth Industrial Revolution’s digital age.13 By 2030, economists expect ASEAN to be the world’s 4th largest economy – larger than the U.S. and behind only China, India and the European Union (EU).14

 

Much of the optimism surrounding ASEAN’s potential is owed to the deepening levels of regional integration. The ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) – a regional plan for economic integration intended to bolster trade among member states, and make the region, as a whole, more competitive in the global marketplace – was launched at the end of 2015. Through the AEC, ASEAN envisions “(1) a single market and production base, (2) a highly competitive economic region, (3) a region of fair economic development, and (4) a region fully integrated into the global economy.”15 Furthermore, despite a history of under-spending on infrastructure, "today there is a strong political will to realize ASEAN’s linkage routes, domestically and across national borders.”16

 

Yeen Seen Ng, COO of the Kuala Lumpur-based Asian Strategy & Leadership Institute (ASLI), points to the successes of economic integration already prominent in the region. “[With the exception of Myanmar], we have almost zero trade barriers, [which] means that ASEAN has already achieved one of the three milestones [of the] ASEAN Economic Connectivity Master plan.” Increasing free trade between ASEAN states is not the only economic initiative required for the region’s success. As the bloc’s intra-regional economic ties deepen, ASEAN states must also look outwards for trade and investment opportunities, and they will have to do so while carefully balancing an increasingly delicate diplomatic tightrope as China continues to flex its military and financial might and in the face of questions about the U.S.’ waning dominance. Further success, Ms. Ng contends, will depend on “every country in ASEAN  [maintaining] healthy and positive bilateral ties with both the U.S. and China.”

 

 

ASEAN Challenges

 

Indeed, ASEAN is full of promise, yet translating this potential into actual success will require a sober assessment of the challenges facing the region. To begin with, most ASEAN economies, perhaps with the exception of the more mature economies of Malaysia and Singapore, are only now beginning to industrialize and have relied heavily on “labor-intensive, export-based manufacturing as critical parts of their development strategies.”17 These less developed member states may see their chief competitive advantage in the global economy – cheap labor – erode, as the costs of automation falls sharply. These labor and export dependent paradigms of development will have to be reconsidered in this new digital industrial age. To adapt, the ASEAN region must cultivate a stronger, self-supporting, internal demand for its goods and services, which in the long-run will allow the region to reap synergies from its member states’ different capabilities, and leave the region, as a whole, less vulnerable to external demand-side shocks.

 

Inequality, in terms of wealth, education, and other basic services, both within, and among member states, will be another key issue. Despite high rates of digital adoption, internet penetration is “still less than 50% for the region as a whole.”18 Just 40% of adults in ASEAN have bank accounts.19 And, despite rising incomes across the region, some 180 million ASEAN citizens, about 30% of the total population, continue to live in poverty conditions. Inequality within nations threatens social and political instability so governments across the region must take steps to overhaul their social welfare and education programs to ensure growth that is not just rapid, but inclusive as well.

 

Across the region there are large disparities in the levels of development among member states. For example, whereas Singapore, Thailand, and Malaysia have impressive public transport systems and infrastructure, “nearly universal wireless coverage,” broadband internet access, mature social welfare programs such as pensions and health insurance, other ASEAN members lag far behind in the most basic services. Rural citizens in Myanmar, Laos, and Cambodia have little or no access to modern healthcare, “healthy foods, or modern communications.”20 The difficulties currently being felt in the EU underscore the need to close these gaps, particularly given a relatively free-flow of labor, to ensure that a regional financial and/or migrant crisis does not occur. According to Seb Hills, the VP of Strategy and Advise, APAC, Middle East and Africa at BT Global Services, “from a trade perspective, harnessing the power of the region in an equitable manner is critical.”

 

In Europe, the dismal financial crisis that still plagues much of the Union was caused in part because the single currency distorted the vast macroeconomic differences between member economies. These weaknesses in the EU have culminated in the Brexit movement, which now threatens the very integrity of the Union. According to Mr. Hills, “a lot of the anger that has led to Brexit is the feeling of inequality. I think you have to be very, very careful in managing that. Europe has got very, very different countries. I think [ASEAN must] learn from where Europe’s failed in terms of managing those inequalities.”

 

 

21st Century Challenges to Governance

 

The technologies and innovations of the Fourth Industrial Revolution may pose a particular problem in the realm of governance. Historically, legislators have been slow to adapt regulation to new technology. For instance, much of the laws governing computer and telecommunications are decades out of date. Aviation regulators continue to lag behind coming up with an effective scheme to address the increasing prevalence of drones. According to the WEF’s Founder and Executive Chairman, Klaus Schwab, our “current systems of public policy and decision-making evolved alongside the Second Industrial Revolution.”21 The rapid pace of technological change has largely rendered these old ‘top-down’ approaches unworkable. These “regulation gaps” are likely to persist and worsen in the future, if governments are unable to effectively collaborate with their citizens and businesses, who will be much quicker to both adopt and develop best practices for new technology. Adopting a model of ‘agile governance’ will allow regulators a greater degree of flexibility, and effectiveness, by relying on their partners in the private sector to better understand, adapt to, and adopt, these rapid technological changes.

 

Regulatory issues will not only occur within nations but among them. In the digital information age, both products and consumers are becoming increasingly borderless. Regulators will have to work not only to ensure that regulation keeps pace with new technology, but also that these regulations are harmonized across the region. As labor, trade, and financial activities flow ever freer across national borders, it will be essential that the tax, labor, financial services, and even criminal codes and registries across the region are at least inter-operable. On the whole, “information sharing among some ASEAN members is less than ideal,” and the under-staffed and under-funded secretariat means that the organization still does not have “a centralized place for analysis and advice on critical issues.”22 As a result, ASEAN members continue to fail to collaborate to their full potential and do not “share their own governments’ best analyses,” on a wide range of topics from healthcare, to security, to business regulation.23 According to Bon Moya, former Undersecretary in the Philippine’s Department of Budget and Management, transparency also lags behind in the region. The Philippines is one of the founding members of the worldwide movement Open Government Partnership (OGP), a multilateral initiative that aims to promote transparency, empower citizens, fight corruption, and harness new technologies to strengthen governance. However, “after five years of promoting the OGP initiative, only one other ASEAN state (Indonesia) is a member.” In short, there is still much work to be done in the realm of collaborative governance – between governments and the private sector, and between the different governments of the ASEAN region.

 

Adapting lawmaking to be more responsive and work in concert with the private sector and civil society will be crucial if ASEAN nations are to be able to govern with agility in the face of the ever more rapid transformations brought about by the Fourth Industrial Revolution. Strengthening, and properly funding, the ASEAN secretariat and its other institutions will likewise be essential if the region is to become a truly effective international body. In both of these endeavors, a key component of achieving success will depend on a higher degree of transparency – among governments, and between governments and the governed. Harnessing the emerging communications infrastructure of the Fourth Industrial Revolution can help streamline regulation, increase efficiency, share and implement best practices, and reduce corruption.

 

 

Public-Private Partnerships

 

Given the rapid changes in the economy, communications, and our daily lives, the old top-down approaches of governance and policy making are becoming largely obsolete – too slow, and oftentimes too prone to corruption, or simple ineffectiveness. A more collaborative approach will be required, where governments will solicit greater levels of recommendation and participation from businesses and civil society.

 

The model of Public-Private Partnership (PPP) holds promise for a more agile form of governance. In the realm of infrastructure development, for example, poorer countries, whose governments may not have the requisite resources or expertise to implement large-scale projects, may benefit substantially from offering development contracts to private businesses. The WEF remarked on how the Philippines is a good example of this model, wherein “much of its infrastructure planning,” has been centralized “into a Public-Private Partnership Center that is showing great progress.”24 Of course, these types of projects, have in the past, been hotbeds of corruption so that greater levels of transparency are needed and bidding process must be opened up to smaller business as well to guard against the opportunities for graft and corruption.

 

There are many areas where the private sector can simply provide services more effectively and at a lower cost than governments can – in theory because competition between businesses motivates greater levels of efficiency. Governments’ role should therefore be not to compete with business in the provision of services, but facilitate collaboration with the private sector, and empower the private sector to reach its full potential.

 

Senator Benigno “Bam” Aquino IV of the Philippines, for example, discussed his initiatives for the establishment of government sponsored ‘Negosyo Centers’ (negosyo is the Filipino word for business) for empowering small businesses – one stop shops where citizens can on the one hand acquire crucial knowledge and training with regards to setting up and managing a business, and also complete the necessary registrations to get their ideas off the ground. These types of initiatives allow governments to play a proactive role in fostering inclusive growth – not by providing everything to their citizens, but empowering their citizens with the resources and knowledge necessary to provide for themselves.

 

According to Senator Aquino, collaboration with the private sector was instrumental in the success of these legislative coups: “The first startup bill that we came up with was actually just a tax bill. It was very simple. No tax for the first few years for startups.” After consulting with private sector stakeholders, more innovative approaches were embraced. The inclusion of “co-working spaces, visas for foreigners who want to work in the Philippines, [seed] funding from [the] government for startups” complimented the original tax measures. “By opening the bill to the [private] sector,” Senator Aquino concludes, “we now have a much more effective bill.”

 

 

Trans-National Collaboration

 

Governments in the region must not only collaborate with their respective civil society and private sector groups but also among each other and with non-governmental stakeholders across the region writ large. In addition to strengthening the administrative arm of the ASEAN Secretariat in Jakarta, the bloc should pursue greater consolidation of financial and security institutions to promote regional-level, rather than national, problem solving, and thereby strengthen a shared sense of the ASEAN identity.

 

In the wake of the Asian Financial Crisis of the late 1990s, wherein Asian nations “relied on the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for bailouts,” it became evident that Asia must amass its own source of reserve funding.25 In May 2000, the Chiang Mai Initiative (CMI) was launched to “[provide] a network for bilateral currency swaps between members of ASEAN+3 (ASEAN, China, Japan, and Korea).”26 The CMI has since matured and served to mitigate member states’ vulnerabilities to capital shocks and financial speculation, with a total reserve pool of funding of $240 billion.27 Promisingly, intra-regional investment has been steadily increasing, and in 2014 accounted for 18% ($24.4 billion) of foreign direct investment (FDI) in the region.28 Notwithstanding these positive trends, investment distribution continues to be distributed unequally, with Thailand and Singapore receiving outsized portions of FDI. ASEAN will therefore have to work towards directing investments from a regional development perspective, and focus particularly on those nations that still require drastic infrastructure overhauls. The Fourth Industrial Revolution’s promise of increased transparency and connectivity will be critical to better identifying and allocating investment and development initiatives across the region.

 

On the security front, ASEAN has been plagued by an inability to reach a security consensus on a variety of key issues, most prominently the territorial disputes in the South China Sea. On the security front, member states have, with few exceptions, defaulted to national-level interests rather than regional-level ones. So far, ASEAN has succeeded in preventing a major conflict between its member states, yet the lack of a strong security apparatus, in the face of ever-increasing geopolitical tensions, poses an unprecedented challenge to ASEAN stability should territorial disputes further escalate. ASEAN, unlike the African Union, has no peacekeeping force, and its Charter precludes the bloc from contravening national sovereignty directives such that the Secretariat lacks any real capability to reign in a member state for the good of the bloc in the face of a crisis or dispute. While this has been a part and parcel characteristic of the hitherto cherished “ASEAN Way,” the reality is that ASEAN will be unable to further mature as a regional institution if it remains unwilling to give its own Secretariat greater teeth.

 

Aside from territorial disputes, the ASEAN region will have to contend with a threat environment further exacerbated by the specter of international terrorism. Greater levels of cooperation in the intelligence and surveillance spheres will be crucial to mitigating these threats. At the same time, non-government stakeholders will have to keep a close eye on their governments to ensure that these national and regional security apparatuses are not used to suppress the rights of law-abiding citizens.

 

Finally, ASEAN governments must collaborate with each other and their civil and private sectors to more firmly establish the ASEAN identity by a set of rules, values, and norms. For example, ASEAN “has no strong mechanism for enforcing human rights.”29 This is not to say that the region must necessarily ascribe to or promote Western notions of norms, but it will be crucial for the region to come to its own consensus on how it envisions the character and conduct of its member states if a truly regional identity, based on shared cultural norms and values is to be established.

 

Optimistically, there is an increasingly robust interest, particularly among the region’s youth to cultivate a stronger sense of shared regional identity. The WEF’s Global Shapers Community produced a 2016 study, “We are ASEAN,” which “suggested that 76% of young people in ASEAN identify with being a part of the region,” while 95% of respondents said “they are very interested” in learning more about the different member states and the same percentage affirmed that it was “important to cultivate stronger relationships” across the region.30

 

With the Philippines at the helm of the ASEAN Chairmanship this year, there is perhaps an unprecedented opportunity to transform the region and better equip it for the sweeping changes that the Fourth Industrial Revolution will bring to the economic, social, and political realms across the region. However, in his keynote address in Davao, President Duterte emphasized adhering to the ASEAN Way’s principles of “non-interference,” which may signify his hesitance to radically transform the fundamental nature of the bloc.  It is high time, that the ‘ASEAN Way,’ move beyond complacency. Let the ASEAN way of the 21st Century be the way of change.

footnotes
Annotations
Rexy Josh Dorado :
"How can companies across ASEAN work together better? Just last year, Singapore’s DBS Bank launched a mobile-only “Digibank” that could scale across all of India, with the help of local outlets. Could we see partnerships like this happening between countries within the ASEAN region?"
Citations
1
 "FULL TRANSCRIPT: Duterte Kicks off 2017 ASEAN." ABS CBN NEWS. ABS CBN NEWS, 15 Jan. 2017. Web. <http://news.abs-cbn.com/focus/01/15/17/full-transcript-duterte-kicks-off-2017-asean>.
2
 Kurlantzick, Joshua. "ASEAN’s Future and Asian Integration." Council on Foreign Relations. International Institutions and Global Governance Program, Nov. 2012. Web. 27 Feb. 2017. <https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=3&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0ahUKEwiF5-SIq8vRAhUJVbwKHU5yDlsQFggsMAI&url=http%3A%2F%2Fi.cfr.org%2Fcontent%2Fpublications%2Fattachments%2FIIGG_WorkingPaper10_Kurlantzick.pdf&usg=AFQjCNF5ZfqrO1cmEd5ls24JT9JSorQS7w&sig2=HdVQ8TSERO-dcCdAC35FHA>.
3
 "Shaping the ASEAN Agenda for Inclusion and Growth." (n.d.): n. pag. World Economic Forum. World Economic Forum on ASEAN, June 2016. Web. <http://www3.weforum.org/docs/WEF_ASEAN16_Report.pdf>.
4
 "Shaping the ASEAN Agenda for Inclusion and Growth." (n.d.): n. pag. World Economic Forum. World Economic Forum on ASEAN, June 2016. Web. <http://www3.weforum.org/docs/WEF_ASEAN16_Report.pdf>.
5
 "FULL TRANSCRIPT: Duterte Kicks off 2017 ASEAN." ABS CBN NEWS. ABS CBN NEWS, 15 Jan. 2017. Web. <http://news.abs-cbn.com/focus/01/15/17/full-transcript-duterte-kicks-off-2017-asean>.
6
 Masilamani, Logan, and Jimmy Peterson. "The “ASEAN Way”: The Structural Underpinnings of Constructive Engagement." Foreign Policy Journal. Foreign Policy Journal, 05 Sept. 2016. Web. 27 Feb. 2017. <http://www.foreignpolicyjournal.com/2014/10/15/the-asean-way-the-structural-underpinnings-of-constructive-engagement/>.
7
 Masilamani, Logan, and Jimmy Peterson. "The “ASEAN Way”: The Structural Underpinnings of Constructive Engagement." Foreign Policy Journal. Foreign Policy Journal, 05 Sept. 2016. Web. 27 Feb. 2017. <http://www.foreignpolicyjournal.com/2014/10/15/the-asean-way-the-structural-underpinnings-of-constructive-engagement/>.
8
 Kurlantzick, Joshua. "ASEAN’s Future and Asian Integration." Council on Foreign Relations. International Institutions and Global Governance Program, Nov. 2012. Web. 27 Feb. 2017. <https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=3&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0ahUKEwiF5-SIq8vRAhUJVbwKHU5yDlsQFggsMAI&url=http%3A%2F%2Fi.cfr.org%2Fcontent%2Fpublications%2Fattachments%2FIIGG_WorkingPaper10_Kurlantzick.pdf&usg=AFQjCNF5ZfqrO1cmEd5ls24JT9JSorQS7w&sig2=HdVQ8TSERO-dcCdAC35FHA>.
9
 Kurlantzick, Joshua. "ASEAN’s Future and Asian Integration." Council on Foreign Relations. International Institutions and Global Governance Program, Nov. 2012. Web. 27 Feb. 2017. <https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=3&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0ahUKEwiF5-SIq8vRAhUJVbwKHU5yDlsQFggsMAI&url=http%3A%2F%2Fi.cfr.org%2Fcontent%2Fpublications%2Fattachments%2FIIGG_WorkingPaper10_Kurlantzick.pdf&usg=AFQjCNF5ZfqrO1cmEd5ls24JT9JSorQS7w&sig2=HdVQ8TSERO-dcCdAC35FHA>.
10
 "Shaping the ASEAN Agenda for Inclusion and Growth." (n.d.): n. pag. World Economic Forum. World Economic Forum on ASEAN, June 2016. Web. <http://www3.weforum.org/docs/WEF_ASEAN16_Report.pdf>.
11
 "Shaping the ASEAN Agenda for Inclusion and Growth." (n.d.): n. pag. World Economic Forum. World Economic Forum on ASEAN, June 2016. Web. <http://www3.weforum.org/docs/WEF_ASEAN16_Report.pdf>.
16
 "Shaping the ASEAN Agenda for Inclusion and Growth." (n.d.): n. pag. World Economic Forum. World Economic Forum on ASEAN, June 2016. Web. <http://www3.weforum.org/docs/WEF_ASEAN16_Report.pdf>.
17
 "Shaping the ASEAN Agenda for Inclusion and Growth." (n.d.): n. pag. World Economic Forum. World Economic Forum on ASEAN, June 2016. Web. <http://www3.weforum.org/docs/WEF_ASEAN16_Report.pdf>.
18
 "Shaping the ASEAN Agenda for Inclusion and Growth." (n.d.): n. pag. World Economic Forum. World Economic Forum on ASEAN, June 2016. Web. <http://www3.weforum.org/docs/WEF_ASEAN16_Report.pdf>.
19
 "Shaping the ASEAN Agenda for Inclusion and Growth." (n.d.): n. pag. World Economic Forum. World Economic Forum on ASEAN, June 2016. Web. <http://www3.weforum.org/docs/WEF_ASEAN16_Report.pdf>.
24
 "Shaping the ASEAN Agenda for Inclusion and Growth." (n.d.): n. pag. World Economic Forum. World Economic Forum on ASEAN, June 2016. Web. <http://www3.weforum.org/docs/WEF_ASEAN16_Report.pdf>.
21
 Schwab, Klaus. "The Fourth Industrial Revolution: What It Means, How to Respond." World Economic Forum. World Economic Forum, 14 Jan. 2016. Web. <https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2016/01/the-fourth-industrial-revolution-what-it-means-and-how-to-respond>.
12
 "Southeast Asia's Young Populations Present Big Business Opportunities." BDG ASIA. N.p., 09 Oct. 2014. Web. 01 Mar. 2017. <http://www.bdg-asia.com/southeast-asias-young-populations-business-opportunities/>.
13
 "Shaping the ASEAN Agenda for Inclusion and Growth." (n.d.): n. pag. World Economic Forum. World Economic Forum on ASEAN, June 2016. Web. <http://www3.weforum.org/docs/WEF_ASEAN16_Report.pdf>.
14
 Post, The Jakarta. "ASEAN to Become World's 4th Largest Economy by 2030." The Jakarta Post. The Jakarta Post, 4 May 2016. Web. 01 Mar. 2017. <http://www.thejakartapost.com/seasia/2016/05/04/asean-to-become-worlds-4th-largest-economy-by-2030.html>.
15
 "About AEC | ASEAN Economic Community | ASEAN Investment." About AEC | ASEAN Economic Community | ASEAN Investment. N.p., n.d. Web. 01 Mar. 2017. <http://investasean.asean.org/index.php/page/view/asean-economic-community/view/670/newsid/755/about-aec.html>.
20
  Kurlantzick, Joshua. "ASEAN’s Future and Asian Integration." Council on Foreign Relations. International Institutions and Global Governance Program, Nov. 2012. Web. 27 Feb. 2017. <https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=3&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0ahUKEwiF5-SIq8vRAhUJVbwKHU5yDlsQFggsMAI&url=http%3A%2F%2Fi.cfr.org%2Fcontent%2Fpublications%2Fattachments%2FIIGG_WorkingPaper10_Kurlantzick.pdf&usg=AFQjCNF5ZfqrO1cmEd5ls24JT9JSorQS7w&sig2=HdVQ8TSERO-dcCdAC35FHA>.
22
  Kurlantzick, Joshua. "ASEAN’s Future and Asian Integration." Council on Foreign Relations. International Institutions and Global Governance Program, Nov. 2012. Web. 27 Feb. 2017. <https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=3&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0ahUKEwiF5-SIq8vRAhUJVbwKHU5yDlsQFggsMAI&url=http%3A%2F%2Fi.cfr.org%2Fcontent%2Fpublications%2Fattachments%2FIIGG_WorkingPaper10_Kurlantzick.pdf&usg=AFQjCNF5ZfqrO1cmEd5ls24JT9JSorQS7w&sig2=HdVQ8TSERO-dcCdAC35FHA>.
23
  Kurlantzick, Joshua. "ASEAN’s Future and Asian Integration." Council on Foreign Relations. International Institutions and Global Governance Program, Nov. 2012. Web. 27 Feb. 2017. <https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=3&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0ahUKEwiF5-SIq8vRAhUJVbwKHU5yDlsQFggsMAI&url=http%3A%2F%2Fi.cfr.org%2Fcontent%2Fpublications%2Fattachments%2FIIGG_WorkingPaper10_Kurlantzick.pdf&usg=AFQjCNF5ZfqrO1cmEd5ls24JT9JSorQS7w&sig2=HdVQ8TSERO-dcCdAC35FHA>.
25
  Kurlantzick, Joshua. "ASEAN’s Future and Asian Integration." Council on Foreign Relations. International Institutions and Global Governance Program, Nov. 2012. Web. 27 Feb. 2017. <https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=3&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0ahUKEwiF5-SIq8vRAhUJVbwKHU5yDlsQFggsMAI&url=http%3A%2F%2Fi.cfr.org%2Fcontent%2Fpublications%2Fattachments%2FIIGG_WorkingPaper10_Kurlantzick.pdf&usg=AFQjCNF5ZfqrO1cmEd5ls24JT9JSorQS7w&sig2=HdVQ8TSERO-dcCdAC35FHA>.
26
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Authors
Carlo Delantar

A multi-awarded serial and social entrepreneur, philanthropist and humanitarian based in the Philippines.

Sam Ramos-Jones

A political researcher, writer, and digital content curator, advocating for the democratization of public policy discussions in the Philippines.

Kevin dela Cruz

A multi-faceted development professional working as a social entrepreneur, program manager, enterprise consultant, management trainer, social enterprise researcher and professor.

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