At Stanford, in addition to his work for SEAF and his affiliations with CDDRL and the Abbasi Program in Islamic Studies, Donald Emmerson has taught courses on Southeast Asia in the International Relations and International Policy Studies Programs, in the Department of Political Science, and for the Bing Overseas Studies Program. He is also active as an analyst of current policy issues involving Asia. In 2010 the National Bureau of Asian Research and the Woodow Wilson International Center for Scholars awarded him a two-year Research Associateship given to “top scholars from across the United States” who “have successfully bridged the gap between the academy and policy.”
Emmerson’s policy concerns run from specific issues such as sovereignty disputes in the South China Sea to broad questions involving China-Southeast Asia relations, the American “rebalance” toward Asia, and the future of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). Still more abstract are his interests in the contrasting epistemologies of political science and area study regarding Southeast Asia and in the paradigmatic implications of uncertainty in world affairs. His keynote speech to the 2011 Australian Political Studies Association’s convention, for example, dealt with “Crisis, Uncertainty, and Democracy: Black Swans, Fat Tails, and the Futures of Political Science.”
Emmerson’s recent publications include: “Facts, Minds, and Formats: Scholarship and Political Change in Indonesia” in Indonesian Studies: The State of the Field (2013); “Is Indonesia Rising? It Depends” in Indonesia Rising (2012); “Southeast Asia: Minding the Gap between Democracy and Governance,” Journal of Democracy (April 2012); “The Problem and Promise of Focality in World Affairs,” Strategic Review (August 2011); An American Place at an Asian Table? Regionalism and Its Reasons (2011); Asian Regionalism and US Policy: The Case for Creative Adaptation (2010); “The Useful Diversity of ‘Islamism’” and “Islamism: Pros, Cons, and Contexts” in Islamism: Conflicting Perspectives on Political Islam (2009); and “Crisis and Consensus: America and ASEAN in a New Global Context” in Refreshing U.S.-Thai Relations (2009). His analyses of current events since 2009 have been carried by Asia Times Online and the East Asia Forum among other outlets.
Earlier writings include Hard Choices: Security, Democracy, and Regionalism in Southeast Asia (edited, 2008); “ASEAN’s ‘Black Swans,’” Journal of Democracy (July 2008); “Southeast Asia in Political Science: Terms of Enlistment,” in Southeast Asia in Political Science: Theory, Region, and Qualitative Analysis (2008); “Challenging ASEAN: A ‘Topological’ View,” Contemporary Southeast Asia (December 2007); “From State to Society? Democracy and Regionalism in Southeast Asia,” in The Inclusive Regionalist (2007); “One Nation under God? History, Faith, and Identity in Indonesia,” in Religion and Religiosity in the Philippines and Indonesia: Essays on State, Society, and Public Creeds (2006); “Shocks of Recognition: Leifer, Realism, and Regionalism in Southeast Asia,” in Order and Security in Southeast Asia: Essays in Memory of Michael Leifer (2006); and “Garuda and Eagle: Do Birds of A (Democratic) Feather Fly Together?” Indonesian Quarterly (2006). Other publications, authored or edited, span some 20 books and monographs and more than 200 articles, chapters, and shorter pieces.