• Offered by Strategic and Defence Studies Centre
  • ANU College ANU College of Asia and the Pacific
  • Course subject Strategic Studies
  • Areas of interest Policy Studies, Political Sciences, Security Studies, Strategic Studies, Asia-Pacific Studies
  • Work Integrated Learning Fieldwork

This mobility course will introduce students to the diverse security stances found in Southeast Asia, in particular three leading Southeast Asian states: Indonesia, Singapore and Thailand. Through meetings with experts and visits to key sites, they will encounter the complexity of Southeast Asian approaches to security, including the legacies of colonialism, decolonisation, political ideology, geostrategic location, ethnic makeup, civil-military relations and religion. While some Southeast Asian states struggle with internal conflict, ASEAN as a whole has experienced remarkably peaceful interstate relations. Students will examine what has sustained peace, and consider whether it can be continued. Students will look at how ASEAN contributes to managing intra-Southeast Asian relations, and how Southeast Asia manages its relations with external

powers, whether through hosting the ASEAN Regional Forum or the East Asia Summit. It will also consider the shifting geopolitical orientations of Southeast Asian states, as all adjust their postures to the rise of China as a regional and global power. Students will develop connections with individuals and institutions in private and public sectors in three countries. This course will utilise the world leading expertise of the Strategic and Defence Studies Centre to provide students with discipline specific experience as part of their training to become the next generation of strategic experts in Australia.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

  1. Identify and analyse critical historical, political and social factors shaping security policy in Southeast Asian states especially Indonesia, Singapore and Thailand.
  2. Identify and explain key similarities and differences between mainland and maritime Southeast Asian security perceptions, including with respect to ASEAN and China.
  3. Discuss and analyse contemporary Southeast Asia's security challenges including managing relations with external powers, disputes with neighbours and non-traditional security issues such as terrorism and climate change.
  4. Demonstrate advanced skills in critical thinking, reading, writing and oral presentation.

Work Integrated Learning


Indicative Assessment

  1. Literature summaries (5 x 250 words) (20) [LO 1,2,3,4]
  2. Reflective summaries following tour activities. (10 x 250 words) (20) [LO 1,2,3,4]
  3. Participation. (10) [LO 4]
  4. Major Essay. 2500 words. (50) [LO 1,2,3,4]

The ANU uses Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. While the use of Turnitin is not mandatory, the ANU highly recommends Turnitin is used by both teaching staff and students. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website.


20 days including 2 days of pre-departure briefing, 4 travel days, and 14 days in-country inclusive of briefings, site visits and breaks.

Inherent Requirements

Not applicable

Requisite and Incompatibility

You will need to contact the Strategic and Defence Studies Centre to request a permission code to enrol in this course.

Prescribed Texts

Milton Osborne, Southeast Asia: an Introductory History, (Sydney: Allen & Unwin, 2013).

Kevin Blackburn, 'War memory and nation-building in South East Asia', South East Asia Research, 18, 1, 2010. pp 5–31

Leonard C. Sebastian & Iis Gindarsah, 'Assessing military reform in Indonesia', Defense & Security Analysis, 29:4, 293-307, 2013.

John Blaxland and Greg Raymond, 'Tipping the Balance in Southeast Asia? Thailand, the United States and China', Centre of Gravity Series, Strategic and Defence Studies Centre, ANU, November 2017.

Institute for Policy Analysis of Conflict, 'Marawi, the East Asia Wilayah, and Indonesia', IPAC Report No. 38, 2017.

Puangthong R. Pawakapan, The Central Role of Thailand’s Internal Security Operations Command in the Post-Counter-insurgency Period, Trends in Southeast Asia, ISEAS – Yusof Ishak Institute, Singapore, 2017.

Shambaugh, David (2018). 'U.S. -China Rivalry in Southeast Asia', International Security, Vol. 42, Number 4, Spring 2018, pp. 85-127.

Goh, Evelyn (2016), 'Southeast Asian Strategies toward the Great Powers: Still Hedging after All These Years?', The Asan Forum, vol. 4, no. 1.

Evan A. Laksmana (2017): Threats and civil–military relations: explaining Singapore’s “trickle down” military innovation, Defense & Security Analysis.

G. Raymond, 'Naval Modernization in Southeast Asia: Under the Shadow of Army Dominance?',

Contemporary Southeast Asia Vol. 39, No. 1 (2017), pp. 149–77.

G. Raymond, 'Mnemonic hegemony, spatial hierarchy and Thailand’s official

commemoration of the Second World War', South East Asia Research 2018, Vol. 26(2) 176–193

Preliminary Reading

John Blaxland, 'Australia, Indonesia and Southeast Asia' in Peter J Dean, Stephan Fruhling and Brendan Taylor (eds) Australia’s Defence : Towards a New Era? (Melbourne: Melbourne University Press, 2014).

M. Hiebert, G. Poling, C .Cronin (eds.), 'In the Wake of Arbitration: Papers form the Sixth Annual CSIS South China Sea Conference', Centre for Strategic and International Studies, January 2017.

Aaron L Connelly (Editor), 'Southeast Asian perspectives on US–China competition', Lowy Institute, August 2017.

Richard Robison & Vedi R. Hadiz (2017), 'Indonesia: a tale of misplaced expectations',The Pacific Review, 30:6, 895-909.

Greg Fealy and John Funston, 'Indonesian and Malaysian Support for the Islamic State', report for the United States Agency for International Development, January 2016.

Vedi R. Hadiz, 'Imagine All the People? Mobilising Islamic Populism for Right-Wing Politics in Indonesia', Journal of Contemporary Asia, 48:4, 566-583, 2018.

D. Jansen, 'Relations among Security and Law enforcement Institutions in Indonesia', Contemporary Southeast Asia, Vol. 30, No.3, 2008.

Assumed Knowledge

Knowledge of international security studies and issues, such as from STST1001 Introduction for International Security Studies or STST1003 Coping with Crisis: The Practice of International Security, preferred.  Ability to speak an Asian and especially Southeast Asian language would also be an advantage.


Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

Commonwealth Support (CSP) Students
If you have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). More information about your student contribution amount for each course at Fees

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
6 units

If you are a domestic graduate coursework student with a Domestic Tuition Fee (DTF) place or international student you will be required to pay course tuition fees (see below). Course tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2022 $4200
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2022 $5700
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

ANU utilises MyTimetable to enable students to view the timetable for their enrolled courses, browse, then self-allocate to small teaching activities / tutorials so they can better plan their time. Find out more on the Timetable webpage.

The list of offerings for future years is indicative only.
Class summaries, if available, can be accessed by clicking on the View link for the relevant class number.

Spring Session

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
6564 29 Nov 2023 29 Nov 2023 15 Dec 2023 31 Jan 2024 In Person N/A

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