What type of parties are there in Southeast Asia?

Many – maybe too many – scholars have been searching for a suitable typology of political parties in Southeast Asia. Many see at least a semblance of “Duvergerian” types of parties, others don’t.
Historian Wang Gungwu‘s assessment is very clear:
“None resembles the classic parties of the West.”
See also in: Party Theory

Partyforumseasia: The floor is open…
Please send your suggestions to:


“Chinese” DAP: Malay candidates not successful in party elections

Partyforumseasia: Efforts of the opposition coalition Pakatan Rakyat to overcome the racial dividing lines in Malaysia’s party system have met with considerable difficulties. The Malay candidates in the “Chinese” DAP were not successful in the party elections but two were coopted into the CEC. See the Straits Times report of 17 December 2012 here:
DAP 12.12 


DAP Malaysia: Never change a winning team…

Partyforumseasia:The party convention on 15 December has confirmed father and son Lim as well as party veteran Karpal Singh as “top dogs”. According to the following Straits Times report the DAP has grown from 300 to 1100 branches and the membership from 84.000 to 150.000 since 2008.

DAP 16.12.2012Link: Straits Times, 16 December 2012

DAP’s party elections in Penang

Partyforumseasia: With the parliamentary elections imminent, the stability and unity of the DAP will be one of the crucial elements for a success of the opposition Pakatan Rakyat, especially in view of the Barisan’s effort to recapture the DAP stronghold Penang. How much say will the delegates have in the internal party elections? Carolyn Hong, Malaysia Bureau Chief of the Straits Times, predicts in this article that the “top leaders are not likely to be challenged.”
DAP convention 12, 2012

Straits Times 13.12.2012

UMNO and BN: Weak only by infighting?

UMNO inf

NewNewStraitsTimes   2 December 2012

Partyforumseasia: Competition for candidacies and influential posts are the normal in all parties. As first chancellor of (West) Germany’s Federal Republic Konrad Adenauer once said, the usual sequence within a party is enemy – mortal enemy – party comrade…
But some leaders are better than others in keeping the party together. And of course: The more you can win or lose, the tougher the infighting.

Singapore: PAP elects new CEC

Partyforumseasia:  In the past the PAP has been described as a secretive cadre-style party, keeping its internal developments mostly in the dark. Here is a rather public glimpse into the election of the Central Executive Committee (CEC) by the “close to 2000” party cadres. Straits Times, 3 December 2012