Kristi Govella is the inaugural Director of the Center for Indo-Pacific Affairs and an Assistant Professor of Asian Studies at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa. She specializes in the intersection of economics and security in international relations, with a particular focus on the Indo-Pacific. Her research has examined topics such as economic statecraft, trade war, trade agreements, foreign investment, government-business relations, defense capacity building, regional institutional architecture, and the governance of the maritime, outer space, and cyber domains. She also serves as an Adjunct Fellow at the East-West Center and Pacific Forum and as Editor of the journal Asia Policy. Dr. Govella was previously Senior Fellow and Deputy Director of the Asia Program at The German Marshall Fund of the United States, a Postdoctoral Fellow at Harvard University, and an Associate Professor at the Daniel K. Inouye Asia-Pacific Center for Security Studies. She holds a Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of California, Berkeley.
Lian Bawi Thang is a graduate assistant at the Center for Indo-Pacific Affairs, a Ph.D. student in the Department of Political Science at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa, and an East-West Center Degree Fellow. His research interests include Myanmar’s nation-building process, ethnic and indigenous politics, human rights, and US-China competition. He was previously a political analyst for the US Department of State and an activist in Myanmar, as well as a Visiting Fellow at the University of Cambridge . He has previously published opinion pieces in The Diplomat and Teacircle Oxford, and his writing won the John Okell Prize in 2022. He holds an M.Sc. in International Politics from the University of London, an M.A in International Development Studies from Chulalongkorn University, a B.A. in Social Studies from the Myanmar Institute of Theology, and a B.A. in Economics from Yangon Institute of Economics.
Joshua Bumanglag is a research assistant at the Center for Indo-Pacific Affairs and a second-year undergraduate student pursuing a B.A. in Economics at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. He is passionate about economics and the insights it offers into numerous facets of society and decision-making. His work with CIPA is supported by Entering Research and Creative Work funding from the UH Mānoa Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program.
Will Duvall is a research assistant at the Center for Indo-Pacific Affairs and a third-year undergraduate student pursuing a B.A. in Political Science and Asian Studies at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. His interests include East and Southeast Asian politics, specifically territorial disputes, security alliances, and conflict resolution. He has also been selected as a participant in the 2023–2024 US Department of State Foreign Service Internship Program. His work with CIPA is supported by Entering Research and Creative Work funding from the UH Mānoa Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program.
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