Upcoming conference on migrations and new mobilities in Southeast Asia
Photo: UNICEF Cambodia/2014/Heang Path

Upcoming conference on migrations and new mobilities in Southeast Asia

The conference held at UC Berkeley from April 27-28, 2018 is a joint UC Berkeley-UCLA NRC consortium project highlighting current research being conducted by scholars from the University of California and California State University systems.


The Center for Southeast Asia Studies at UC Berkeley and the Center for Southeast Asian Studies at UCLA form a consortium U.S. Department of Education Title VI National Resource Center for Southeast Asian Studies. The Asian Institute at the University of Toronto is one of North America's leading centers of Asian research and teaching.

The aim of this conference, jointly organized by the Center for Southeast Asia Studies at UC Berkeley, the Center for Southeast Asian Studies at UCLA and the Asian Institute at the University of Toronto, is to look anew at issues concerning migration and Southeast Asia.

Conference chair: Prof. Nancy Lee Peluso (Environmental Science, Policy & Management, UC Berkeley)

Co-chair: Prof. Rachel Silvey (Geography, University of Toronto)


Migrations and New Mobilities in Southeast Asia

April 27-28, 2018

The conference is hosted by UC Berkeley


Friday, April 27

180 Doe Library
8:30 – 9:00 a.m. Registration
9:00 – 9:20 a.m. Welcome & Opening Remarks


9:20 – 11:10 a.m.
PANEL 1: Migrant Labor and the Law

  •  Democracy and Indonesian Migrant Workers: Rising Political Salience and Contestation at Home and Abroad
    Prof. Ann Marie Murphy, Seton Hall University
  • Development and Nation: The Evolution of Malaysian Immigration Laws
    Oanh Nguyen, University of Minnesota
  • Absurd Journeys: The Costs of Becoming Legal
    Prof. Maryann Bylander, Lewis & Clark College

    Chair & Discussant: Prof. Phuong Nguyen, CSU Monterey Bay


11:25 a.m. – 1:15 p.m.
PANEL 2: Repressive Labor and Forced Mobilities

  •  Deportable Refugees, Transnationalism and Cambodian-Americans
    Jennifer Zelnick, UC Irvine
  • From Sea to City: Migration and Social Wellbeing in Coastal Cambodia
    Furqan Asif, University of Ottawa
  • Blood Bricks: Debt-bondage, Carceral Geographies and the (Im)mobile Lives of Brick-kiln Laborers in Cambodia
    Prof. Katherine Brickell, Royal Holloway, University of London
  • Migration and Refuge in Central and East Java during the Violence of 1965-66
    Prof. Siddharth Chandra, Michigan State University

    Chair & Discussant: Prof. George Dutton, UCLA


2:00 – 3:50 p.m.
PANEL 3: Place-making and Networks

  • The Things They Carried (and Kept): Socialist Mobilities and Vietnamese Remittances from East Germany
    Prof. Christina Schwenkel, UC Riverside
  • Urban Footprints: Migration, Place-making and the Politics of Presence in Hanoi, Vietnam
    Prof. Timothy Karis, Western Oregon University
  • Tracing Mining Migration through Indonesia's National Gold Networks
    Matt Libassi, UC Berkeley
  • Labor Migration and Agrarian Change in Indonesia’s Industrial Rural Landscapes
    Prof. Lisa Kelley, University of Hawaii-Manoa (co-authored with Nancy Peluso, UC Berkeley; Kim Carlson, University of Hawaii-Manoa; and Suraya Afiff, University of Indonesia)

    Chair & Discussant: Dr. Emily Hertzman, Asian Institute, University of Toronto


4:10 – 6:00 p.m.
PANEL 4: Imaginaries and Transformations of Home

  •  Flexible Filipinas: Global Economic Restructuring, Gendered Labor Migration and the Feminization of Overseas Work in Contemporary Philippine Anglophone Literature
    Alden Sajor Wood, UC Irvine
  • Art and the Rantau: Tracking Minangkabau Migration
    Katherine Bruhn, UC Berkeley
  • Migration and Da'wa: Exploring the Nexus in the Pen Circle Forum
    Prof. Monika Arnez, University of Passau
  • 'Kisah Sukses': Stories of Indonesian Migrant Worker Returnees Living in Greater Jakarta
    Kilim Park, University of British Columbia

    Chair & Discussant: Prof. Sylvia Tiwon, UC Berkeley


6:15 p.m.
Keynote Address
"Challenges of Migrant Workers Protection in ASEAN"
by Anis Hidayah, Migrant Care (Indonesia)

Saturday, April 28

Morning Session
180 Doe Library


10:00 – 11:55 a.m.
PANEL 5: Brokering, Labor and Bodily Controls

  •  The Policing of Female Marriage Migrants: Case Studies from Southeast Asia
    Prof. Gwenola Ricordeau, CSU Chico
  • Unbound and Bound Spheres of Globalization: The Regional Pocket of Free Travel in Asia and Asymmetries in Global Mobility
    Dr. Maria Cecilia Hwang, Rice University
  • Manufacturing Global Care Workers: Regimes of Labor Control in Indonesia's Transnational Migrant Industry
    Andy Chang, UC Berkeley
  • The Ethnic H-Rê Experiences: Labor Migration from Vietnam to Malaysia and Return
    Prof. Angie Ngoc Tran, CSU Monterey Bay

    Chair & Discussant: Prof. Eric Pido, San Francisco State University


Afternoon Session
Plenary Panels
Geballe Room
220 Stephens Hall, Townsend Center for the Humanities

1:15 – 3:15 p.m.
Plenary Panel 1: Migration in Southeast Asia - Structural Shifts, Patterns and Continuities

  •  Michele Ford, Professor of Southeast Asia Studies; Director, Sydney Southeast Asia Centre, University of Sydney
  • Johan Lindquist, Professor of Social Anthropology; Director, Forum for Asian Studies, Stockholm University
  • Aihwa Ong, Robert H. Lowie Distinguished Chair in Anthropology; Chair and Head Adviser, Group in Asian Studies, UC Berkeley
  • Brenda Yeoh, Professor of Geography; Vice Provost of Graduate Education, National University of Singapore

    Moderator: Rachel Silvey, Professor of Geography; Richard Charles Lee Director of the Asian Institute, University of Toronto


3:30 - 5:30 p.m.
Plenary Panel 2: Political Ecology and Migration in Southeast Asia

  •  Nicole Constable, Professor of Anthropology, University of Pittsburgh
  • Rebecca Elmhirst, Reader in Human Geography; Deputy Head of Learning and Teaching, School of Environment and Technology, University of Brighton
  • Deirdre McKay, Senior Lecturer in Social Geography and Environmental Politics, Keele University
  • Christine Padoch, Senior Curator Emerita, Institute of Economic Botany, New York Botanical Garden

    Moderator: Nancy Lee Peluso, Henry J. Vaux Distinguished Professor of Forest Policy, College of Natural Resources, UC Berkeley