Understanding The Impact Of The Youth Vote


About the Seminar

Malaysia’s most recent historic bill, Undi18, lowered the voting age from 21 to 18 and allowed for automatic voter registration. Touted as a game-changer for Malaysia’s democracy, the bill, however, came with a series of unintended consequences. Chief among them was to create vastly unequal seats, where a vote in an urban constituency can be worth as little as one-eighth of a vote in a rural seat. Electoral flaws have long plagued the country, and the recent Undi18 exacerbated existing deficiencies to the point of making Malaysia one of the most malapportioned countries in the world. The ‘one person, one vote’ principle is violated, and potential political disengagement may happen, which contradicts the purpose of the Undi18 bill.

This webinar will consider the background of Undi18, the electoral system’s existing flaws, and the effects of severe malapportionment in Malaysia. In the final part, the webinar will also put forward potential remedies for the electoral condition and the likelihood of these measures being implemented in the near future.

About the Speaker

James Chai is a Visiting Fellow at the Malaysian Studies Programme at ISEAS-Yusof Ishak Institute. His research focus is on youth politics in Malaysia. James is a columnist who has written over 250 articles on Malaysia, and his work is found on Al Jazeera, NPR, MalaysiaKini, Sin Chew Daily, and others. James is a graduate of the University of Oxford and the Queen Mary University of London.


This is a hybrid event which will be held at ISEAS – Yusof Ishak Institute (ISEAS).

Attending the Event In-person at ISEAS

To join the event in-person at ISEAS, please register via the ISEAS mobile app, available on iOS and Android via the Apple or Play store. Search “ISEAS” to find or scan this QR code.

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Seating capacity is limited. Do register early to avoid disappointment.

Attending the Event Virtually via Webinar

To join the event virtually at the specified date and time using your internet devices, please register here to receive your unique login link for the webinar via the zoom platform.

If you have questions for the speakers, please key in your questions via the Q&A, stating your name and affiliation. The moderator will field them to the speakers during the Q&A session.


Aug 11 2022


GMT +8
10:00 am - 11:15 am


ISEAS Seminar Room 2 / Webinar