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Regional Strategic & Political Studies

Philippine Studies


The Philippine Studies Programme started as a multi-year initiative known as the Philippine Studies Project under the Regional Political and Studies Programme (RSPS) to enhance ISEAS research on the Philippines. The project received funding support from the Philippine Government through the Department of Foreign Affairs and the Embassy of the Republic of the Philippines in Singapore from June 2019 to September 2023. It officially become the sixth country study programme of ISEAS on 1 April 2024.

The Philippine Studies Programme aims to support the research capabilities and coverage of Philippine studies at ISEAS through publications and events. It also offers opportunities for both established and young scholars and experts from the Philippines to share their views and perspectives on multifaceted developments in the country.

The current Coordinator of the Philippine Studies Programme is Dr Aries Arugay. Dr Malcolm Cook managed the project until June 2021.


Moving Muslim Mindanao ForwardAmihilda “Ämie” Sangcopan13 February 2020
Building Back Better: Philippines’ Pandemic RecoveryRonald U. Mendoza30 June 2020
Philippines and the Climate CrisisLoren Legarda12 July 2021
The Philippines-US Alliance after Duterte: Strategic Agenda and Directions Charmaine Willoughby
Julio S. Amador III
Gregory B. Poling
25 March 2022
Polarised and Mobilised? Examining 2022 Electoral Campaigns in the Philippines Jean Encinas-Franco
Cleo Calimbahin
Carmel Abao
20 April 2022
Unpacking Pro-Russian Narratives in Southeast Asia Munira Mustaffa
Aries Arugay
Hoang Thi Ha
22 April 2022
The New ‘New Society’? Analysing the 2022 Philippine Elections Ronald Holmes
Maria Ela Atienza
Imelda Deinla
27 May 2022
Torn Between Two Powers: The Philippines in the US-China Rivalry Aries A. Arugay28 November 2022
The Philippine Economy amid Disruptive Transitions Jan Carlo Punongbayan
Karl Jandoc
Christina Epetia
Zy-za Nadine Suzara
15 March 2023


ASEAN Centrality: An Autoethnographic Account by a Philippine DiplomatElizabeth Buensuceso2021


Title Author(s) Date
The Philippines’ Alliance Problems with the USAMalcolm Cook13 June 2019
The Duterte Administration’s China TensionsMalcolm Cook13 August 2019
China-Philippine Relations: Duterte’s China Visit and Prospects for Oil and Gas ExplorationLye Liang Fook3 October 2019
Philippine Regional Inclusive Innovation Centers: Solving Community Problems and Bridging Development GapsRafaelita M. Aldaba10 October 2019
The Death of EDCA and Philippine-U.S. Security RelationsRenato Cruz De Castro11 May 2020
Economics of Lockdown: Insights on Building Back Better in Post-Pandemic PhilippinesRonald U. Mendoza9 July 2020
The Bilateral Consultative Mechanism on the South China Sea and Philippines-China RelationsRommel C. Banlaoi22 April 2021
“Political Connectivity”: A New Dimension of China’s Belt and Road Initiative in the PhilippinesAaron Jed Rabena26 April 2021
US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin’s Southeast Asia Tour: Assurances and DividendsWilliam Choong, Hoang Thi Ha, Le Hong Hiep, Ian Storey5 August 2021
The Philippines and the South China Sea Arbitration Award: External Appeasement and Internal DissensionJay L. Batongbacal24 September 2021
The Philippines’ China Policy and the 2022 Elections: Time for a Rethink Charmaine Willoughby22 February 2022
Stronger Social Media Influence in the 2022 Philippine Elections Aries A. Arugay7 April 2022
Foreign Policy & Disinformation Narratives in the 2022 Philippine Election Campaign Aries A. Arugay6 June 2022
Situating the Role Schools Have Played in the Mindanao Conflict Jonamari Kristin Floresta21 June 2022
A Strategic Reset?: The Philippines-United States Alliance under President Marcos Jr. Aries A. Arugay and Ian Storey15 May 2023

Fulcrum Commentaries

Title Author(s) Date
Philippine Sovereign LimitsMalcolm Cook8 July 2019
The Post-Sovereign PhilippinesMalcolm Cook12 July 2019
A Mindanao Test for China-Philippine RelationsMalcolm Cook18 July 2019
Duterte’s Trip to Russia Results in Modest GainsIan Storey10 October 2019
Philippine Critical Infrastructure and ChinaMalcolm Cook2 December 2019
President Duterte’s China BenefitsMalcolm Cook12 December 2019
Manila’s VFA Termination: A Win for China and RussiaIan Storey17 February 2020
Duterte’s ‘Independent’ Foreign Policy: Independence from CriticismMalcolm Cook10 March 2020
Covid-19: A Particular Philippine ProblemMalcolm Cook27 March 2020
Covid-19 in the Philippines: Star Mayors, Malacanang Material?Malcolm Cook27 April 2020
Visiting Forces Agreement: Uncle Sam Still Welcome for Another YearIan Storey4 June 2020
Covid-19 in the Philippines: Corporate Bigwigs to the RescueMalcolm Cook8 June 2020
The Philippine Pandemic and the Plague on PedagogyMalcolm Cook22 July 2020
Philippine Remittances and Covid-19: Stayin’ AliveMalcolm Cook28 August 2020
Duterte the (Economic) LiberalMalcolm Cook1 December 2020
A Duterte-Democrat President Redux?Malcolm Cook17 December 2020
The Philippine-US Alliance: Keeping Things on an Even KeelRenato Cruz De Castro1 February 2021
The US-Philippines Visiting Forces Agreement: The Duterte Punchbag That Will Probably Survive the BlowsIan Storey19 February 2021
Bangsamoro Elections: Choosing Between Two Bad OptionsMalcolm Cook12 March 2021
The Philippines’ Vexed Vaccine RolloutMalcolm Cook30 March 2021
Philippine-US Cooperation on Whitsun Reef: A “Win” for the Biden Team in Southeast Asia?Robert Sutter21 May 2021
Following the Money: Changes to Philippine Remittance InflowsMalcolm Cook3 June 2021
After 70 Years, It’s Time to Modernise the US-Philippines AllianceIan Storey23 September 2021
Presidential Polls and the West Philippine Sea: A Sea Change? Jay Batongbacal19 January 2022
Philippines Presidential Polls: Economic Recovery at Stake JC Punongbayan15 February 2022
Is an Opposition Alliance Still Possible in the 2022 Philippine Presidential Elections? Elvin Ong28 February 2022
Reforming the Philippine Electoral Commission Cleo Calimbahin15 March 2022
The Belt and Road Initiative and the Philippines’ Post-Duterte China Challenge Aaron Jed Rabena28 March 2022
We’re Feeling It: Philippines Voters’ Emotional Beliefs in Presidential Candidates Michael Magcamit12 April 2022
Stronger Social Media Influence in the 2022 Philippine Elections Aries A. Arugay14 April 2022
Talk is Cheap: The 2022 Philippine Elections’ Climate Implications Ruth Lusterio-Rico18 April 2022
Local Matters in the 2022 Philippine Elections Maria Ela Atienza29 April 2022
The China Factor and “Bongbong” Marcos’s Foreign Policy Aaron Jed Rabena12 July 2022
UNCLOS: The Polestar for Philippine Maritime Ambitions Jacqueline F. Espenilla8 November 2022
Fact-checking in the Philippines: The Quest to End Disinformation in Elections Ma. Diosa Labiste13 December 2022
Digital Labour Platforms Must Provide Philippine Gig Workers a Fair Deal Cheryll Ruth Soriano2 February 2023
What Does Marcos 2.0 Mean for ASEAN? Julio S. Amador III1 March 2023
Posting for Profit: Social Media Influencers in Philippine Politics Maria Elize H. Mendoza9 March 2023
You Can’t Put the Genie Back in the Bottle: Marcos Jr.’s Defence Cooperation Policy Justin Baquisal20 March 2023
Marcos Jr. and the Dangers of Virtual Hypermasculinity Maria Tanyag4 April 2023
The Curious Case of Cagayan: Localisation of U.S.-China Rivalry in the Philippines Aries A. Arugay6 April 2023
Why China Should Learn To Live With U.S.-Philippine EDCA Julio S. Amador III and Deryk Baladjay3 May 2023


Title Author Date
The Bong Bong bounce: Marcos Jnr has the Philippines in thrall (Financial Review) Aries A. Arugay28 January 2022
El giro hacia China que deja Duterte en Filipinas (El Pais) Aries A. Arugay16 February 2022
政治观察家:新总统是否会继承争议性政策 菲律宾后杜特尔特时代政治动向备受关注 (Lianhe Zaobao) Aries A. Arugay18 February 2022
“菲总统选举民调虽仍落后小马可斯 罗布雷多支持率回升或有机会翻盘 (Liahe Zaobao) Aries A. Arugay20 April 2022
Marcos Comeback Is Running on Manipulated Nostalgia (Bloomberg) Aries A. Arugay3 May 2022
菲總統大選政二代合體聲量高 領先者遭指親中威脅美戰略 (TVBS) Aries A. Arugay6 May 2022
Feature: drones, livestreaming feature Philippine presidency race amid pandemic (Xinhua) Aries A. Arugay6 May 2022
A dictator’s son is leading Philippine polls. ‘Pink warriors’ are trying to stop him (NBC News) Aries A. Arugay8 May 2022
菲律賓總統大選今登場 民眾一早6點大排長龍投票 (Apple Daily) Aries A. Arugay9 May 2022
Why the Philippines election could be a win for China (CNN) Aries A. Arugay9 May 2022
Philippines election: Ferdinand Marcos Jr closes in on victory (The Guardian) Aries A. Arugay9 May 2022
Ferdinand Marcos triumphs in Philippines presidential election (The Guardian) Aries A. Arugay10 May 2022
Philippine election: What does a Marcos Jnr presidency mean for Asean and democracy in the region? (South China Morning Post) Aries A. Arugay11 May 2022
How will Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. taking power in the Philippines change U.S. relations? (CBS News) Aries A. Arugay13 May 2022
Will history be rewritten in Malaysia too (Straits Times) Aries A. Arugay21 May 2022
Philippines election result is a win for dynasty politics (Yahoo News UK) Aries A. Arugay26 May 2022
PH foreign policy made more dynamic under Duterte admin (ABS-CBN) Aries A. Arugay8 June 2022
执政六年明天交棒 惠民政策血腥扫毒杜特尔特功过难评 (Lianhe Zaobao) Aries A. Arugay30 June 2022
学者:杜特尔特政策方向将继续主导菲律宾政治 (Lianhe Zaobao) Aries A. Arugay30 June 2022
菲新政府面对通胀加剧与中美关系等挑战 (Lianhe Zaobao) Aries A. Arugay1 July 2022
South China Sea: as US eyes a Subic Bay return, was Chinese ‘coercion’ of Philippines the reason? (South China Morning Post) Aries A. Arugay4 December 2022
南中国海主权课题料无重大突破 分析:小马可斯访华将着重经济合作 (Lianhe Zaobao) Aries A. Arugay3 January 2023
小马可斯习近平会谈 将重启南中国海油气开发谈判 (Lianhe Zaobao) Aries A. Arugay5 January 2023
须以菲利益为先避免外交陷被动 小马可斯中美平衡策略受考验 (Lianhe Zaobao) Aries A. Arugay7 January 2023
Insight: US Military Expansion in the Philippines (Channel News Asia) Aries A. Arugay6 April 2023
As US and Philippine defense ties grow, China warns over Taiwan tensions (CNN) Aries A. Arugay27 April 2023
Marcos, Back in Arms of U.S., Is Making His Own Name in Foreign Policy (New York Times) Aries A. Arugay2 May 2023
Philippines’ new military deal with US: Will it tilt power balance in South China Sea? (Channel News Asia) Aries A. Arugay14 May 2023