I have worked in higher education for over 15 years. I previously held posts at Thammasat University, the University of Leeds, La Trobe University and the City University of Hong Kong. I completed a BA Honours Political Science (First Class) at the University of Melbourne, and was awarded the Dwight Examination Prize. At the same university I completed a Graduate Diploma of Education (Secondary) and a Ph.D. I also have a BA in History from La Trobe University. My research focuses on political contestation in Asia, with special attention to Thailand. I also research and teach on international relations, democracy and culture policy. From 2013-2015 I was founding Director of IAPS, Malaysia, and from 2013-2016 I was Head of School, Politics, History and International Relations, University of Nottingham, Malaysia Campus. From mid-2016 I will be a visiting research fellow at the Institute of Asian Studies at Chulalongkorn University, where I hope to work on a number of publications.
Associate Professor, School of Politics, History and International Relations
University of Nottingham, Malaysia Campus
Jalan Broga, 43500 Semenyih
Selangor Darul Ehsan
+6 (03) 8725 3573 Michael.Connors@nottingham.edu.my
1. Ph.D. (Political Science) University of Melbourne, 2000.
2. BA Honours (1st class): University of Melbourne, 1994. (Recipient of Dwight Examination Prize for Honours) and Dean's List, University of Melbourne.
3. Graduate Diploma of Education, University of Melbourne, 1989.
4. BA Degree (History), La Trobe University 1986-1988.
Associate Professor (On Leave January 2017- July 2017).
School of Politics, History and International Relations
University of Nottingham, Malaysia Campus
Visiting Fellow, Institute of Asian Studies (July 2016-June 2017) Chulalongkorn University, Thailand
La Trobe University 2002-2012 (2009 on leave): Lecturer (2001-2004), Senior Lecturer 2005-2010) Associate Professor 2011- 2012
City University of Hong Kong 2009 (Associate Professor)
University of Leeds 2000-2002 (Lecturer)
Thammasat University, Bangkok 1998-1999. (Visiting Lecturer).
Connors, M.K. (2003; 2007): Democracy and National Identity in Thailand, (new edition) Copenhagen Nordic Institute of Asian Studies), (originally published by Routledge, 2003)
Connors, M.K. (co-authored with R. Davison and J. Dosch) (2012, orig ed. 2004) The New Global Politics of Asia Pacific, Routledge, London. Second Edition (Four full length chapters single authored by Connors of 40,000 words. My chapters cover Japan, Australia, Asian Values and Political Economy). Please note a third edition will be delivered in March 2017.
Connors, MK and Ukrist Pathmanand (eds). (in Progress) Thai Politics in Translation: Democracy, Monarchy, Nation. This is a work of translation of 6-7 major Thai language politics texts. The translations are underway. National University of Singapore has expressed interest in the project. As editors we will provide an introduction and a researched context chapter.
Guest Editorship of peer-reviewed journal
Connors, M.K. and K. Hewison (2008)"Thailand: "the good coup"', Journal of Contemporary Asia, 38, 1. Special Issue.
Connors M.K. (in progress) Special Issue on Political Ideologies in Southeast Asia, Asian Review (2018)
Connors MK (under review) "Liberals Against Democracy"
Connors MK (2016) "Political Ideology and Liberalisms in Southeast Asia: Review Article" Asian Review, 29, 2: pp. 101-114.
Connors M. K. (2016) "Cultural Policy as General Will and Social Order Protectionism: Thailand's Conservative Double Movement" International Journal of Cultural Policy. 1-16. Online first: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/10286632.2016.1184656
Connors M.K. (2011) "When the walls come crumbling down: Democracy and Monarchy in Thailand" Journal of Contemporary Asia, 41, 4, 657-673.
Connors M. K (2011) "Thailand's Emergency State: Transformation and Struggle" Southeast Asian Affairs, 2011, 287-305
Connors M.K. and Streckfuss D. (2011) "Michael K. Connors in conversation with David Streckfuss, author of Truth on Trial in Thailand', Critical Asian Studies, 43:1, 139 - 149.
Connors M.K. (2009) 'Liberalism, authoritarianism and the politics of decisionism in Thailand' The Pacific Review, 22, 3, 355-373.
Connors M (2008) 'Article of Faith: the Failure of Royal Liberalism in Thailand' Journal of Contemporary Asia, 38, 1, 143-165.
Connors M and Hewison K. (2008) "Introduction: "Thailand and the Good coup" Journal of Contemporary Asia, 38, 1, 1-10.
Connors M (2008) 'Four Elections and a Coup" Australian Journal of International Affairs, 62:4, 478-496.
Connors, M. (2006) 'War on Error and the Southern Fire: How Terrorism Experts Get it Wrong', Critical Asian Studies, 38, 151-175. (republished twice - see below)
Connors, M. (2005) 'Ministering Culture', Critical Asian Studies, 37, 4, 523-551.
Connors, M. (2005) 'Thailand: The Facts and F(r)ictions of Ruling', Southeast Asian Affairs, 365-284.
Connors, M. (2003) 'Goodbye to the security state: Ideological Change in Thailand', Journal of Contemporary Asia, 33, 4, 431-448.
Connors, M. (1999) 'Political Reform and the State in Thailand', Journal of Contemporary Asia, 29, 2, 202-226. (republished once - see below).
Connors, M. (1997) 'Prefacing Research on the Global', Melbourne Journal of Politics, Vol.24, 44-48.
Connors, M. (1996) 'The Eclipse of Consociationalism in South Africa's Democratic Transition', Democratization, Vol.3, No.4, London, pp.420-435.
Connors, M. (1996) 'No Getting Past the Post: International Relations and Heterotopia', Melbourne Journal of Politics, 23, pp.44-71.
Connors, (1995) 'Missing Gender and the Fetishism of Sex: Responses to the Sexuality Debates', Thamyris - An International Feminist Journal of Inquiry, Vol.2, No.2, Autumn, Amsterdam, 207-230.
Connors M. K. (2014) "Southeast Asia's New Body?" . In: Sunait Chutintaranond, Ukrist Pathmanand and Vinissa Ujjin (eds). Catching Up: Southeast Asian New Body - States, Markets and Public Spheres Institute of Asian Studies, Chulalongkorn University. 449-553
Connors M.K. (2012) "Notes Towards an Understanding of Thai liberalism" in (ed.) Michael Montesano and Pavin Chachavalpongpun, Bangkok, May 2010: Perspectives on a Divided Thailand ISEAS, Singapore, pp. 97-107.
Connors M.K. (2011) "Ambivalent about rights: Thai Democracy" in Davis T. and Galligan, B. (ed) Human Rights in Asia, Edward Elgar, pp.103-122.
Connors M.K (2011) "Political Reform and the State in Thailand" in Politics of Modern Southeast Asia, Allen Hicken (ed)London Routledge (ROUTLEDGE MAJOR WORKS). Republished
Connors M.K. (2010) "Liberalism, Authoritarianism and the Politics of Decisionism in Thailand" in William Case (ed) Contemporary Authoritarianism in Southeast Asia: Structures, Institutions and Agency, London Routledge. Republished
Connors, M.K. (2009) "Another Country: Reflections on Politics and Culture in the South of Thailand", in John Funston (ed) Divided Over Thaksin Singapore: ISEAS.
Connors, M.K. (2009) "The War on Error and the Southern Fire: How Terrorism Experts Get it Wrong", in Islam in Southeast Asia: Critical Concepts in Islamic Studies, (4 Volumes) ed. Joseph Liow, London, Routledge (ROUTLEDGE MAJOR WORKS). Republished.
Connors, M.K. (2008) 'Democracy from below' in Vin D'Cruz (Ed.) Political Actors and Ideas in Contemporary Asia, Melbourne, Australian Scholarly Press.
Connors, M. K. (2007) "The War on Error and the Southern Fire: How Terrorism Experts Get it Wrong", in Duncan McCargo (ed.) Rethinking Thailand's Southern Violence, Singapore: Singapore University Press. Republished
Connors, M.K. (2006) "Acting Up: the politics of direct action" in Graham Willett (ed.) Thinking Down Under: Australian Politics, Society and Culture in Transition, Wissenschaftlicher Verlag (Scientific Publishing House), Trier, pp. 45-57.
Connors, M. (2006) 'Thailand and the United States: beyond hegemony?', in Mark Beeson (ed.) Bush and Asia: The US's Evolving Relationships with East Asia, London: Routledge, pp.128-144.
Connors, M. (2006) 'Thaksin's Thailand - to have and to hold', in Cavan Hogue (ed.) Thailand's Economic Recovery. Institute of Southeast Asian Studies, Singapore and the National Thai Studies Centre, ANU, Canberra, pp.26-45.
Connors, M. (2006) 'Democracy and the Mainstreaming of Localism in Thailand', in Joakim Öjendal and Francis Loh (eds) Southeast Asian Responses to Globalization: Restructuring Governance and Deepening Democracy, NIAS Press, pp.259-286.
Connors, M. (2003) 'The reforming state: development culture and democracy in Thailand', in Ji Ungphakorn (ed.) Radicalising Thailand, Institute of Asian Studies, Chulalongkorn University, pp.319-343
Connors, M. (2002) 'Framing the People's Constitution', in Duncan McCargo (ed.) Political Reform in Thailand, Institute Southeast Asian Studies, National University of Singapore, Singapore EAS, pp.37-56. .
Connors, M. (2001) 'Thailand', in Patrick Heenan and Monique Lamontagne (eds) The Southeast Asia Handbook, Fitzroy Dearborn Publishers, London and Chicago, pp.41-55.
Connors (2000) 'When the Dogs Howl: Democratization in Thailand', in P. Darby (ed.) At the Edge of International Relations: Postcolonialism, Gender and Dependency, Continuum, London and New York (orig, 1997), pp.125-147.
(in progress) "อภิราชธรรมนูญ" by Somchai Preechasilpakul (70 pp.)
Seminars, Conferences, Addresses, Working Papers
(2016) 'Liberalisms Against the People" 2016 Annual Conference on Southeast Asian Studies in Taiwan, held at National Chengchi University, Tapei, 22-23 September 2016
(2015) "Thinking about Liberalism in Southeast Asia" , "The Liberalism Conference: Trends, Challenges and Future Prospects" September, Kuala Lumpur
(2015) Extra-Constitutionality in Thai Royal Liberalism, *th EUROSEAS , Vienna, August 11-14.
(2012) 'Rethinking Liberalism: Case Notes from the Thai Crisis', Australian Association of Political Studies, University of Tasmania, October 4.
(2009) 'Human Rights in Thailand' invited paper to Workshop on Human Rights in Asia, University of Melbourne, October 2-3, 2009.
(2008) 'State ambivalence, decisionism and competing regime framers" invited paper presented to Workshop on "Contemporary Authoritarianism in Southeast Asia:Structures, Institutions, and Agency" City University, Hong Kong, May 9 -10, 2008.
(2007) 'Cultural Surveillance and the Market Economy - moral politics and the state in Thailand' paper presented at International Convention of Asia Scholars, 5, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, August 2-5.
(2006) 'The Ministry of Culture in the South: paradoxes of cultural pluralism' invited presentation to National Thai Studies Update, September 29, Australian National University. (2006) 'Reading Rohan: the politics of intelligence and terrorism', invited address to British Academy funded seminar on The Social Impact of the War on Terror, July 13.
(2006) 'Give Democracy a Break: Thailand's Political Crisis', invited address to the Australian Institute of International Affairs, Melbourne. May 10.
(2004) 'Thailand under US hegemony? Power, Regionalism and the Peripheral Politics of Place', invited paper presented to symposium on 'Bush and Asia: America's Evolving Relations in East Asia', held at the University of Queensland, Friday, November 26.
(2004) 'Ministering Culture: the renewal of Thainess and the politics of hegemony', paper presented at Revisiting Globalization and Communication in the 2000s, Faculty of Communication Arts, Chulalongkorn University Bangkok, Thailand, August 5-6.
(2004) 'Thaksin - to have and to hold: Thai Politics in 2003-2004', invited address to the Thai Update Conference 2004, organized by the National Thai Studies Centre in Association with Macquarie University, Department of Foreign Affairs, Macquarie University, April 20-21.
Connors, M. (2003) 'The Reforming State: Security, Development and Culture in Democratic Times', Working Paper Number 42, Southeast Asian Research Centre, City University, Hong Kong, September. http://www.cityu.edu.hk/searc/WP42_03_Connors.pdf
(2003) 'Civil Society and Global State Building', ASEASUK annual conference, 19-20th October, University of Leeds.
(2002) 'The forces of the land movement: the politics of civic engagement and reformed nationalism', paper presented at the 8th International Conference on Thai Studies, Nakhon Phanom, Thailand, 9-12 January.
(2001) 'Ideological Aspects of Democratisation: Mainstreaming Localism', paper presented to the Third Euro-Seas Conference, School of Oriental and African Studies, 5th-8th September. Appears as: 'Ideological Aspects of Democratization: the Mainstreaming of Localism', Working Paper Number 12, Southeast Asian Research Centre, City University, Hong Kong, October. http://www.cityu.edu.hk/searc/WP12_01_Connors.pdf
(2001) 'Towards an Accountable Democracy Project', address to Local Governance and Accountability Workshop, Bele Pakuan Hotel, Bandung, 31 March, 2001, sponsored by UNPAR University and the British Council.
(2001) 'Political Discourse and Democratization: Ideology and Power in Civics Education', paper presented to Institute of Civil Society Studies, UNPAR University, Bandung, 7th April.
(2001) 'Globalising Democracy: What kind and Why now?', talk presented to the Support Democracy in Indonesia Project, Bandung, 26th March, 2001.
(2001) 'Making Democracy Work? The Politics of Democracy Promotion in Southeast Asia', Southeast Asia Seminar Series, City University, Hong Kong, 24th May.
Example of op-ed writing
I write occasional op-ed pieces. For example:
"Thailand embraces reactive liberalism", Bangkok Post, December 13, 2013
"Thailand's Political Violence", The Age, May 2010.
"Country needs change, so he wants revolution" Bangkok Post, April 2, 2009.
"Parliamentary Cretinism of the Commentariat" Bangkok Post, 21 October, 2008.
"The charade of Sondhi's 'New Politics'" Bangkok Post, July 8, 2008.
"Fact and Fiction in the War on Terror", The Age, April 7, 2005.
"Hero of the poor became a corrupter of democracy", The Age, April 6, 2006.
"Addressing the Southern Conflagration" Bangkok Post, June 13, 2006.
" The mess in Iraq... and Prophet Huntington" Bangkok Post, October 6, 2005.
"Howard's Australia: The Democratic Paradox" New Matilda, April 19, 2006.
"On Schoolboys and Empire", New Matilda February 8, 2006.
"The End of Bushisms?" New Matilda, July 13, 2005. "Deposed PM is a man addicted to serial reappearance", Canberra Times, September 25, 2006.
2016 IAPS Small Gant 5000 ringgit for work on Malaysian think tanks.
2013-2015 (Seed grants secured from various university sources for the establishment of Institute of Asia Pacific Studies (Malaysia) £20,000.
2013 Teaching Development Grant for web-based module. University of Nottingham, UK. £10,000
2011 La Trobe Research Infrastructure Block Grant to co-ordinate Program Research Assistant $17, 000.
2010 Australian Academy of Social Sciences and the Institute of Human Security, La Trobe University , $7000, to fund field work and research assistance on human security in Thailand for 2011.
2008 Department of Foreign Affairs and Exchange, Australia-Thailand Institute, $22, 000 (with supporting funds from La Trobe University of $4000) - to facilitate photographic exhibition and film on Thai south.
2007 Department of Foreign Affairs and Exchange, Australia-Thailand Institute, $24, 000 (with supporting funds from La Trobe University of $2000) - to facilitate exchange visit of Thai Muslims to Australia in 2007.
2006-2008 Australian Research Council Discovery Grant $85, 000: Chief Investigator. Resulted in 5 publications including 3 ISI journal articles.
2002-2005 - various La Trobe University competitive research grants for conference and research.
2003 Australian Academy of the Humanities Fieldwork Fellowship $3700.
2002 - co-author with Professor Duncan McCargo of successful bid for Department for International Development funded link between the University of Leeds and the Prince of Songkla University, Thailand.
2001 British Academy of the Humanities and Social Sciences, Small Grant for project on 'Rediscovering Liberalism in Thailand' £ 2800.
Journal of Asian Studies, Journal of Contemporary Asia, Melbourne Journal of Politics, Globalizations Pacific Review, Sojourn, Critical Asian Studies, Asian Studies Review, Global Society, Journal of Southeast Asian Studies, Asian Journal of Comparative Politics, Cambridge University Press, Routledge and NIAS Press.
Media: I have been interviewed by Bloomsberg, Asia Channel, ABC, Radio National, BMF, BBC and various newspapers on my research area of Thai politics.
2007: Reader for an IRUA university draft research quality statement
2008: Co-organizer of film and photographic exhibition in Melbourne funded by DFAT.
2010: consulted on report of Thai Studies in Australia.
2011: appointed External Academic Advisor for the Master of Asian and International Studies at City University of Hong Kong (3 years).
2011: appointed to the editorial board of the Journal of Contemporary Asia.
2011; organizing committee of the international conference "After Homosexual: the legacy of gay liberation.
2015-2016: Nottingham co-ordinator of the United Nations Association of Malaysia/University of Nottingham's Annual speech writing competition committee.
2013-2015: Nottingham Co-ordinator of the Big Debate Series with the British High Commission in Malaysia.
2015 Co-organizer in my capacity as Director of IAPS with the think-tank IDEAS "The Liberalism Conference: Trends, Challenges and Future Prospects" held at Connexion@Nexus, 19th September 2015.
2016: appointed to the Editorial Board of Asian Review
2017: Organizer of "Political Ideologies in Southeast Asia" Workshop to be held in June.
Appointments and Responsibilities
Mid 2016-2017, Visiting Fellow, Institute of Asian Studies, Chulalongkorn University.
Organizer on Workshop mid 2017 "Political Ideologies in Southeast Asia"
Work with Institute Members to assist with international journal publication on the theme of China in Southeast Asia
Work with Deputy Director of IAS on a book translation project.
Complete at least 3 international journal research article submissions
IAS Senior Researcher Advisor on TRC funded project on Labour Relations in Southeast Asia, under project one "Elites in Southeast Asia." 2017-2018.
2013-present: Associate Professor, University of Nottingham, Malaysia
Head of School (2013-2016): budget, staffing, curriculum reform, general oversight, audits etc.
Director of Institute of Asia Pacific Studies, Malaysia Campus (2013-2015): setting up web; Co-organizer with the British High Commission (Malaysia) of 4 "Big Debates" involving diplomatic, political and civil society figures; creation of visiting fellow scheme and support for 3 fellows; creation of 3 IAPS PhD fellowships; co-ordinating 20 seminars. Winning establishment grants of £20,000.
Joint coordinator with IDEAS Malaysia of Conference "The Liberalism Conference: Trends, Challenges and Future Prospects" 2015 attended by 200 people.
Off Campus MA - co-ordinated and led negotiations with the University of Social Sciences and Humanities (Vietnam) for delivery of an MA International Relations degree in Vietnam. Expected started Mid-2017.
1st Year. Making of Modern Asia (I led the development of this tri-campus blended learning module in its first two years.
2nd Year: International Relations of the Asia-Pacific
3rd Year: Policy and Persuasion
4th Year: Development and Governance
NB: Various responsibilities and demands from my two positions and 75% teaching load at UNMC led to little research/publications in this period.
2002-2012 From Lecturer to Associate Professor, La Trobe University
Convener, Master of International Development (jointly-led the establishment of this degree) 2010-2012
Acting Head (six months, 2012 and six weeks in 2011) Politics and International Relations Program
Chair Faculty Higher Degrees Committee (2011-2012)
Acting Head of Politics Department 2011 (2nd half).
Convener, Politics and International Relations Honour Program (2 years)
Convenor Bachelor of Development Studies (later, International Development 2005-2008
Postgraduate Convenor, Politics - 2004- 2006.
Committee Member Teacher and Learning Committee 2007.
Overseas Study Advisor (intermittent)
4/5 Year: Issues in International Studies and Development
3rd Year: Development in Practice
3rd Year: Doing Politics (Responsible for the three-week "Activism Module".
2nd/3rd Year Contemporary International Politics of the Asia-Pacific
2nd/3rd Year Political Change and Development in the Third World
2nd Year The Making of Modern Asia
5th Year: Contemporary Approaches to Development (1 year)
4thth Year: Honours Research Skills Seminars
2/3 Year: Australia, Asia and the World
2/3 Year: Political Change and Development in the Third World
2/3 year (co-teach on Nationalism course)
2/3 Year: Southeast Asia : Conflict and Change
2009 Associate Professor, City University of Hong Kong (I took a year off my position at La Trobe).
Acting Convenor Bachelor of International Studies
1st Year Political Sociology
2/3 Year: Problem-based studies- Thailand
2/3 Year Problem based-studies - Japan
2/3 Year: International Politics of the Asia-Pacific
1st Year (guest lecturing and tutoring in various modules).
2000-2002 (July) Lecturer University of Leeds
Overseas Study Advisor
Member Development Studies Committee
Co-organizer of seminar group on Southeast Asian Politics
2/3 Year: Politics of Japan
2/3 Year: Democratization in East Asia
2/3 Year: International Politics of the Asia-Pacific
5 Year: Political Transition in Southeast Asia
*Guest Lectures in
Approaches to Political Science
Globalization and regionalization
1998-1999 Visiting Lecturer Thammasat University, Bangkok
Committee Member, Seminar Committee, Faculty of Economics, Thammasat University. In this capacity I acted as the Public Relations Officer for an international conference on 'The Challenges of Globalization". This entailed extensive correspondence with participants, editing of the conference booklet, as well as writing sections of it, and writing articles to promote the conference.
*Convenor of the Thai-Interest Program, which held occasional seminars.
*Work-experience Supervisor. In this capacity I supervised and evaluated students on work experience.
2/3 Year: Labour Relations (with an Asian Focus),
1st Year Introduction to Philosophy and Religion,
Ist Year Western Civilization,
Ist Year Integrated Social Science.
Authoritarianism and Political Ideas
Corruption across regime forms
Asia Pacific IR.