The Globe as you know it is changing. Coming June 2019

  • More thought provoking stories that inspire
  • Independent, free and member supported
  • Vote for, pitch and commission stories
  • Member engagement with our journalists
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To understand more about why you are so important to our member support initiative, we encourage you to read the following from our managing editor ~ Read more

The Globe as you know it is changing.

Since 2007, Southeast Asia Globe has been a space for some of the region’s best writers and photographers to take our readers behind the headlines into the stories that shape people’s lives. Every month, you could expect to pick up our latest print edition and find high-quality journalism, analysis and artwork waiting on every page. And since 2007, we’ve fought to uphold our promise of quality and independence to you, our readers.

But, like we said, the world is changing. Print publications just aren’t reaching the audiences they need to fulfil their promise of informing, educating and entertaining the public. Advertisers continue to invest in digital platforms while printing costs creep ever higher. Print may not be dead, but it’s fighting for its life. And we’re tired of waiting by a sickbed for its condition to improve. We want to be present at the birth of something new.

That’s why Southeast Asia Globe is relaunching as a member-driven platform featuring daily long-form features combining world-class journalism with enthralling art design and data-centered tech. Through our core pillars – Power, Money, Life and Earth – we are focusing in on the central issues that our readers have always engaged with most, with the same in-depth coverage of politics, business, social affairs and the environment that you’ve come to expect since 2007.

But leaving print behind us doesn’t just save our backs from lugging stacks of magazines across Southeast Asia. It opens up a global readership who don’t just want to read the news, but have a say in the stories that we tell and the way that we tell them. We’re not asking you to take out another magazine subscription – our stories are open to all. What we’re offering our members is a space where they can pitch and vote on the stories that they think deserve to be told. We want to inspire an engaged and active community of members who vote for, comment on and contribute to the stories that matter most to them. We want to work with our members to curate the way they engage with the news – not just as readers, but as an active extension of our editorial team.

That’s how we’re changing to bring you great stories. Here’s how we’re not.

We’re independent. Always have been, always will be. We’re not owned by any corporation or aligned with any state. We choose the stories that we tell, and the way that we tell them.

We’re creative. We’re not interested in churning out breaking news stories on the hour, every hour. We believe that the best stories are the ones that come alive on the page, digging deeper into the issues that shape Southeast Asia – and bringing you along for the ride. From our dedicated designers to our new software development team, our commitment is to constantly challenge ourselves to find new ways of reaching out to our readers.

We’re open. Challenging governments, NGOs and businesses to be transparent with the public means nothing if we keep our own readers in the dark. That’s why we will be completely open about why we tell the stories that we tell – and how we pay for them. Work with us to build something that endures where many media fail, and decide with us exactly where that money is going.

Above all, we’re optimistic. And yeah, we know what you’re thinking. Faced with impending climate collapse, the rise of right-wing authoritarian governments across the world, widening wealth and income inequality and deepening divisions rooted in race or gender or creed, it’s hard not to open the papers and feel the weight of the world pressing down. But we wouldn’t be doing this if we didn’t believe that when people work together, they can make their little corner of the world a more just, open and equal place.

And that’s why we can’t do this without you. We believe that across the globe is a community of people who care deeply about social justice, environmental action and press freedom – and who will join in to help make those ideals a reality. We’re not just holding our hand out – we need your voice to play a vital role in building Southeast Asia Globe into a leading space for progressive causes in the region. Tell us what stories the mainstream media is missing. Share with us the causes that matter most to you, and how we can champion those causes not just across Southeast Asia, but the world.

Our vision is clear. By 2025, we want to be recognised for building a great space for outstanding journalists from across the region to explore new ways of telling Southeast Asia’s most vital stories. Let’s bring together a community of engaged and loyal members who want to help reshape the media rather than just read it. And we want to reach a point where our readers, not advertisers, are the ones working to support our shared vision of an inclusive media.

We can’t do this without you. Let’s get together and build something that we all believe in.

If you’re interested in joining us, sign up to our newsletter, like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter. And watch this space.

World Bank / East Asian countries must adapt to match most developed nations

By: Robin Spiess - Posted on: December 11, 2018 | Best of 2018

If countries across East Asia intend to sustain the growth of their economies, policy makers are going to need to accommodate a changing global and economic environment, according to a recent World Bank report

Indonesian women sort clothes at a secondhand clothing market in Medan, North Sumatra. Indonesia’s economy is projected to experience 5.2% growth in 2018 and 2019 according the World Bank Photo: Dedi Sinuhaji / EPA-EFE

East Asia has become “the most successful region” for development over the past several decades, as countries have transformed their poor agricultural economies and launched themselves from low-income to middle-income status. Through policies focused on strengthening basic human capital and providing sound economic governance, East Asia has seen more than a billion people rise out of poverty since the turn of the century.

At a conference in Kuala Lumpur on Monday, World Bank representatives explained that East Asia’s continued development is not guaranteed in the future.

“Despite this progress, countries in the region still have significant gaps in labour productivity, human capital, and living standards compared to high-income countries,” said Victoria Kwakwa, World Bank vice president for East Asia and the Pacific, speaking in Kuala Lumpur.

The World Bank’s latest report, titled ‘A Resurgent East Asia: Navigating a Changing World’, intends to recognise that “what has worked so well so far may not be sufficient going forward”, according to Kwakwa.

Currently, 90% of East Asia’s population live in ten middle income countries, which include China and Mongolia as well as Southeast Asia’s Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam and the Philippines. According to the World Bank’s recent findings, several of these countries could reasonably expect to achieve high-income status within a generation or two – but they’re going to need to turn their attention inward if they hope to achieve this milestone.

“[In the past], a combination of policies that fostered outward-orientated, labour-intensive growth… has delivered rapid and sustained growth,” said Sudhir Shetty, World Bank chief economist for East Asia and the Pacific. “But building on those gains may prove particularly challenging in the face of rapid changes in the world and in the region.”

“Policy makers will need to adapt elements of the traditional East Asian development model to effectively meet these emerging challenges,” he added.

Many governments in the region have set ambitious goals for their economic progress, but if they are to reach these goals, the report urges that governments must pump more funding into the domestic economy. While several countries in the region are already focused on strengthening business and regulatory environments, the report notes that there is a growing need for service sector reforms, stronger trade agreements and improved access to financing for small- and medium-sized enterprises.

Many East Asian countries remain focused on developing basic skills among their citizenry, but rapidly changing technologies will require East Asia’s local populations to build on their skills and become digitally literate. To this end, policymakers will need to launch programmes to help train vulnerable, unskilled labourers in new professions, and will also need to provide affordable access to digital technologies for their citizens.

The report also highlights a strong need for the strengthening of state institutions through enhanced citizen participation, increased transparency, and greater government accountability – all of which have been historically weak in East Asia.

“Although the precise nature and pace of change remain uncertain, the reality is that change is happening, and ignoring it is not an option,” the World Bank stated in a press release about the report. “Unless policy makers in the region act decisively, they run the risk of missing opportunities to sustain East Asia’s remarkable development performance.”