Professor John Sidel

Professor John Sidel

Sir Patrick Gillam Chair in International and Comparative Politics

Department of Government

+44 (0)20 7955 6032
Room No
CBG 3.35
Office Hours
Tuesdays 13:30 - 15:30
Connect with me

English, French, Russian, Swedish
Key Expertise
Southeast Asia, especially the Philippines and Indonesia

About me

Professor Sidel received his BA and MA from Yale University and his PhD from Cornell University. He is a specialist on Southeast Asia and has conducted extensive research in Indonesia and the Philippines in particular. He is the author of Capital, Coercion, and Crime: Bossism in the Philippines (Stanford University Press, 1999); (with Eva-Lotta Hedman) Philippine Politics and Society in the Twentieth Century: Colonial Legacies, Postcolonial Trajectories (Routledge, 2000), Riots, Pogroms, Jihad: Religious Violence in Indonesia (Cornell University Press, 2006), The Islamist Threat in Southeast Asia: A Reassessment (East-West Center, 2007); (with Jaime Faustino) Thinking and Working Politically in Development: Coalitions for Change in the Philippines (The Asia Foundation, 2019), and the forthcoming book Republicanism, Communism, Islam: Cosmopolitan Origins of Revolution in Southeast Asia.

Research interests

Professor Sidel specializes in the study of Southeast Asia and has four main areas of thematic expertise and interest in the study of politics, as reflected in his research, writing, and teaching:

Local Politics: bosses, caciques, clans, mafias, warlords, and various forms of machine politics and monopolistic pratices impeding democratization at the local level.

Religion and Politics: inter-religious violence, religious persecution, religion and democratization, and various forms of mobilization in the name of Islam.

Nationalism and Transnational Forces: the role of transnational ideological currents and social movements, diasporic communities, and international conflicts and conjunctures, in the making of 'nationalist' revolutions.

Advocacy Campaigns: the role of coalitions in advocacy campaigns and activist networks in promoting policy reforms and political change in developing countries like Indonesia, the Philippines, and Vietnam.

Professor Sidel is a member of the editorial board of the journals Asian Politics and PolicyAsian SurveyIndonesia and the Malay WorldPacific Affairs, and South East Asia Research, and the co-editor of the Contemporary Issues in the Asia Pacific book series at Stanford University Press. You can find further information about the Series at SUP and at the East-West Center, which sponsors the Series.

Teaching responsibilities

  • GV4C9: Democratization and its Discontents in Southeast Asia
  • GV4D3: Local Power in an Era of Globalization, Democratization, and Decentralization
  • IR461: Islam in International Relations: From Al-Andalus to Afghanistan