Professor Duncan McCargo

Senior Associate Fellow; Director of the Nordic Institute of Asian Studies and Professor of Political Science, University of Copenhagen


Duncan McCargo is Director of the Nordic Institute of Asian Studies and Professor of Political Science at the University of Copenhagen, researching mainly on the contentious politics of Southeast Asia. He has spent extended periods researching and teaching in Cambodia, Indonesia, Japan, Singapore and Thailand. Professor McCargo has published three books on the Southern Thai insurgency: Rethinking Thailand’s Southern Violence (edited, NUS Press 2007), Tearing Apart the Land: Islam and Legitimacy in Southern Thailand (Cornell 2008), which won the inaugural Bernard Schwartz Book Prize from the Asia Society of New York, and Mapping National Anxieties: Thailand’s Southern Conflict (NIAS, 2012).

He has also worked on parliamentary politics, politics and the media, military coups and preventing electoral violence. His latest book is Fighting for Virtue: Justice and Politics in Thailand (Cornell 2019). Professor McCargo is a regular contributor to media outlets including the Financial Times, The Guardian, and New York Times. He has held grants and fellowships from the British Academy, the ESRC, the Leverhulme Trust, Luce Foundation, the Rockefeller Foundation, and the United States Institute of Peace; and was in residence at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, 2015-16.

At the University of Leeds, he twice headed one of Britain’s largest politics departments and co-supervised 29 PhD students to successful completion. During his time at Columbia University, he co-founded the Columbia-based New York Southeast Asia Network.

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