The unity of a nation stands best to be tested at times of immense challenges and difficulties. We are in such difficult times now. Moving towards the end of the year 2020, the ‘Year of Vision’ that was promised to be a national transformation towards a society of peace, progress and prosperity, but instead we are in the midst of facing a global pandemic threat, continuous instability in domestic politics, and worrying uncertainties of our economic livelihood. Approaching a new year this time around would require a new sense of direction, a fresh vision and unparalleled creative imaginations. Thus, let’s set our attention to the aspirations of the young ones to charter a new path for Malaysia, for the year 2021 and the future of the nation.

This online forum on “Malaysia 2021: Challenges and Prospects” convenes national figures to share thoughts on the prospects and challenges for Malaysia in 2021 including on national direction, development, economy, national unity, and other topics of national interest.

Date23-December-2020 (Wednesday)
Time9.00am - 1.00pm
PlatformVIA ZOOM (Link will be shared with pre-registered participants)
Please click the link for registerClick here to register
9.00 AMRegistration
9.15 AMWelcoming remarks and program introduction by Merdeka Center
9.30 AMSession 1: Keynote Talk by Prof. KS Jomo on “Malaysia 2021: Key Challenges for the Nation Ahead”
10.00 AMQ&A
10.50 AMBreak
11.00 AMSession 2: Online Forum on “Challenges and Prospects for Malaysia 2021”
Speakers (10-15 mins each):
Ibrahim Suffian (Merdeka Center)
Tricia Yeoh (IDEAS)
Muhammed Abdul Khalid (IKMAS)
Madeline Berma (SUHAKAM)
12.00 PMQ&A Discussion

Prof. Dr. Jomo Kwame Sundaram

Research Advisor at Khazanah Research Institute and Visiting Fellow at the Initiative for Policy Dialogue, Columbia University

He was Professor at the University of Malaya (1986 – 2004), and held positions in various important local and international agencies, including as the United Nations Assistant Secretary-General for Economic Development in the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA) during 2005–2012, and then as Assistant Director-General and Coordinator for Economic and Social Development at the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations in Rome during 2012–2015. Prof. Jomo was a member of the Malaysian Economic Council, chaired by the Prime Minister, and the five-member Council of Eminent Persons appointed by him to advise the Federal Government.

Ibrahim Suffian

Co-Founder & Director of Programs Merdeka Center for Opinion Research

Ibrahim Suffian is a co-founder and programs director of Merdeka Center for Opinion Research, a leading public opinion polling and political surveys organization in Malaysia. Through Merdeka Center, Ibrahim has been involved in organizing surveys in Indonesia, Thailand, Philippines, Brunei, Singapore and Myanmar. Ibrahim received education from the Kelley School of Business at Indiana University and obtained an MBA from the Eli Broad College of Business at Michigan State University. Ibrahim was a World Fellow at Yale University in 2011.

Tricia Yeoh

CEO of IDEAS (Institute for Democracy & Economic Affairs)

She is a PhD candidate at the School of Politics, History and International Relations at the University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus, examining federal-state relations and opposition subnational durability within dominant party authoritarian regimes. Specifically, her thesis covers the Pakatan coalition’s control over Selangor and Penang from 2008 to 2018 under the single-party dominant federal regime of Barisan Nasional. She was formerly Research Officer to the Menteri Besar Selangor at the Selangor State Government, and has previously served as Director of the Asli Centre For Public Policy Studies.

Dr. Muhammed Bin Abdul Khalid

“Research Fellow at Institute of Malaysian and International Studies (IKMAS)”.

He is currently a Research Fellow at Institute of Malaysian and International Studies (IKMAS). He is a trained economist with over 20 years experience in various economic and financial sectors and also formerly Securities Commission Malaysia head of economics and a senior analyst at the Institute of Strategic and International Studies. Dr Muhammad obtained his PhD (magna cum laude) from the Institut d’études Politiques de Paris (SciencesPo Paris), France and achieve Master’s degree in Economics from University of Malaya and obtained his Bachelor of Science degree from University of Southern California, Los Angeles.

Dato Dr. Madeline Berma

Commissioner, Human Rights Commission Malaysia

Dato Dr. Madeline accomplished her Bachelors of Economics at Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM) in 1982; and later completed her Master of Arts at University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA in 1986. Subsequently, she received her PhD from University of Hull, England in 1997. Dr. Madeline is credited strongly for her 35 years of academic experience, in which she held various positions during her years under UKM.

Currently, Dato Dr. Madeline is a Commissioner at the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia and is a consultant under NuMind Plus Training and Consultancy.


KASTURI : kasturi@merdeka.org