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Southeast Asia Student Dissertation Fieldwork Grant

SEAC offers a Student Dissertation Fieldwork grant, for current LSE undergraduate and taught master’s students for field research in the Southeast Asia region as part of their assessed dissertation. The funding may contribute towards travel expenses and on-site research expenses, up to a maximum of £500 per applicant.

The Southeast Asia Student Dissertation Fieldwork Grants are supported by Arvind Khattar whose generous gift has helped SEAC to further develop its research activities.

I am very grateful to SEAC for this funding opportunity for my dissertation. My Dissertation Fieldwork Grant will support the acquisition of print reference materials and will conducting online interviews. My study comes at a time of significant and even violent political challenges to the Philippine Left. As a Filipino, I want my research to contribute to political discourse and discussions in the Philippines, especially in light of current contexts shaped by the Duterte regime and the upcoming 2022 elections.

Gabbie Santos, 2021 Dissertation Fieldwork Grantee

2021/22 Funding Round: application guidelines

Please note that the 2020/21 funding round has now closed. See below for details of the 2021/22 scheme.

SEAC considers applicants from any discipline, using any methodology and selecting any site within the Southeast Asia region (normally classified as countries that are member states of ASEAN) in which the fieldwork is to be conducted. Considering the given pandemic circumstances, 'remote fieldwork' also can be considered.

Important note from SEAC:

SEAC is very much aware of significant restrictions that may be imposed on fieldwork due to the on-going pandemic. Applicants are strongly encouraged to pay close attention to LSE and governmental news and health and safety updates, in and in liaison with their dissertation supervisors, in order that appropriate duty of care, for both themselves and any research participants, is ensured.


  • For taught postgraduate students, applicants must be currently enrolled at LSE and due to undertake dissertation fieldwork in the 2021/22 academic year.
  • For undergraduate students, applicants can either be second or third year undergraduates currently enrolled at LSE and who are due to take an assessed final year dissertation as part of their degree. For second year undergraduates, proposed fieldwork can take place at any time until the start of Lent Term in the 2022/23 Academic Year.

Application instructions

Applications for the Dissertation Fieldwork Grant will open on 1st December 2021. Interested students should submit a completed SEAC Dissertation Fieldwork Grant Application Form to SEAC Centre Manager Charles Tocock (seac.admin@lse.ac.uk) by 13th February 2022.  

Important notes

  • SEAC will be contacting your Dissertation Supervisor during the review process to acquire their confirmation of your forthcoming overseas field research. We would encourage you to approach your Dissertation Supervisor when preparing your application so that they are aware in advance.
  • Please also note that fieldwork is likely to involve the submission of Health and Safety Risk assessments as well as an ethics review. It is the responsibility of the applicant and the applicant’s Department to ensure that those processes have been completed before fieldwork commences.


2020/21 Awardees

SEAC was delighted to recieve so many competitive applications for the 2020/21 grants. The 12 student awardees were selected based on the strength of their applications, and their proposed dissertation fieldwork and research. For this year, with in-person student fieldwork strictly limited, our awardees impressed with innovative research and methods to work around travel restrictions.

Awardees have also been encouraged to pay close attention to LSE and governmental news and health and safety updates, in and in liaison with their dissertation supervisors, in order that appropriate duty of care, for both themselves and any research participants, is ensured. 


Gray Brakke

 Gray Brakke

Degree: MSc Urbanisation and Development
Proposed fieldwork location: Vietnam (remotely)
Topic: Strategic Differentiation: The Dialectic of Urban Citizenship and State Authority in Hanoi and Its Periurban Fringe

Read Gray's blog post on his fieldwork here.


Marcus Chee

Marcus Chee

Degree: MSc International Affairs
Proposed fieldwork location: Singapore and Malaysia (remotely)
Topic: British Colonial gaze in the Malaya Command 1939-1942


Soon Yung Low

Soon Yung Low

Degree: MSc Applied Social Data Science
Proposed fieldwork location: Malaysia (remotely)
Topic: Ethnic Stereotypes in Malaysia: A quantitative measure based on word embedding


Jeremiah Magpile

Jeremiah Magpile

Degree: MSc Local Economic Development
Proposed fieldwork location: Philippines (remotely)
Topic: Is Pasig City ready for Industry 4.0? The role of institutions in enhancing workforce technology readiness


DGF Amanda Munoz

Amanda Munoz Gamage

Degree: MSc Human Rights
Proposed fieldwork location: Across Southeast Asia (remotely)
Topic: Exploring the production of knowledge in Feminist Participatory Action Research (FPAR) – A case study of Asia Pacific Forum on Women, Law and Development (APFWLD)

Read Amanda's blog post on her fieldwork here.


Luisa Pineda

Luisa Pineda

Degree: MSc Media, Communication and Development
Proposed fieldwork location: Philippines (remotely)
Topic: Feminist media activism in the Philippines:Communication, community, and collective action amid COVID-19

 Read Luisa's blog post on her fieldwork here.


Safira Pusparani

Safira Prabawidya Pusparani

Degree: MSc Public Policy and Administration
Proposed fieldwork location: Indonesia (remotely)
Topic: Do women run the world (of policymaking)? Uncovering the dichotomy of descriptive and substantive gender representation in Indonesia's legislation processes post-2014 and 2019 elections

Read Safira's blog post on her fieldwork here.


Ili Rahan

Ili Kaiyisah Mohammad Rahan

Degree: MSc Environment and Development
Proposed fieldwork location: Singapore (remotely)
Topic: Food for thought: Analyzing Singapore’s food resilience strategies


Dominic Rose

Dominic Rose

Degree: MSc Applied Social Data Science
Proposed fieldwork location: Thailand, Cambodia (remotely)
Topic: Using Deep Learning and Google Street View to Identify Poverty in Southeast Asia


Gabbie Santos

Gabbie Santos

Degree: MSc Political Sociology
Proposed fieldwork location: Philippines (remotely)
Topic: How does the embourgeoisement of a rising Filipino middle class reshape labour politics and massmobilisation in the Philippines, and what are the political implications?

Read Gabbie's blog post on his fieldwork here.


Joshua Tham

Joshua Tham

Degree: BA History
Proposed fieldwork location: Singapore (remotely)
Topic: Counter-Communist Efforts by the Catholic Church in Post-War Singapore, 1948-70


Nick Williamson

Nicholas Williamson

Degree: MSc Health and International Development
Proposed fieldwork location: Thailand (remotely)
Topic: A Qualitative Study on the Politics of Abortion Legalisation in Thailand


2019/20 awardees

Important note from SEAC:

While any in-person fieldwork will inevitably be reconsidered, including cancellation, due to the current pandemic, we would like to congratulate the 10 successful applicants of SEAC’s 2019/20 LSE Southeast Asia Student Dissertation Fieldwork Grant based on their original proposals. Awardees have been assured that SEAC is very much aware of significant restrictions and that we will be sympathetic to any changes to the nature, scope and timing of their proposed research, including researching remotely if appropriate. Awardees have also been encouraged to pay close attention to LSE and governmental news and health and safety updates, in liaison with their dissertation supervisors, in order that appropriate duty of care, for both themselves and any research participants, is ensured.

dg Anggraini

Rahma Anggraini

Degree: MSc International Development and Humanitarian Emergencies
Proposed fieldwork location: Indonesia
Topic: Contestation within Civil Society and Policy Changes: Examining the Impact of Advocacy by Different Women Groups to the Bill Legalization Process in Indonesia

dg Chiu

Hayli Chiu

Degree: BSc Environment and Development 
Proposed fieldwork location: Malaysia
Topic: Individual Decisions in Agent-Based Models: An Analysis of the Influence of Southeast Asian Haze Episodes on the Migration Patterns in Malaysia 

dg formella

Jonathan Formella

Degree: Columbia-LSE Dual MA/MSc in International and World History
Proposed fieldwork location: Vietnam
Topic: Exhumed Furies: Maoist Radicalism in the Chinese and Vietnamese Revolutions

dg gupta

Saanjh Gupta 

Degree: MSc in Empires, Colonialism and Globalisation
Proposed fieldwork location: Singapore
Topic: Hawker Centre Redevelopment and Singaporean National Identity, 1968-86

dg Lim

Zhen Jun Al Lim

Degree: MSc Urbanisation and Development 
Proposed fieldwork location: Thailand
Topic: Phuket’s Smart City Surveillance: an investigation of its Eagle Eyes CCTV Network 

dg look

Woon Wei Look

Degree: MSc City Design and Social Science
Proposed fieldwork location: Singapore
Topic: What is homelessness? Defining homelessness and a critical examination of governmental responses in Singapore

dg menon

Rishik Elias Menon

Degree: MSc Criminal Justice Policy 
Proposed fieldwork location: Singapore
Topic: Crime Prevention and the Compliance-Industrial Complex: Analysing the Ideas, Interests and Institutions which Influence Singapore’s Anti-Money Laundering Regime 

dg ong

Cheyenne Ong 

Degree: BSc in History and International Relations
Proposed fieldwork location: Singapore and Malaysia
Topic: The extent to which Communists influenced the Chinese middle school students’ movement in Singapore from 1954-1961

dg Sajor

Leanne Sajor 

Degree: MSc Inequalities and Social Science
Proposed fieldwork location: Philippines
Topic: Topographies of resistance: implications of the Human Rights Impact Assessment on movements against inequalities in the Manila Bay Project 

dg Sutton

Johanna Sutton 

Degree: MSc Urbanisation and Development 
Proposed fieldwork location: Singapore
Topic: Making cities more resilient: blue-green infrastructure and governance


2018/19 awardees



Tiffany Bennett

Degree: MSc Development Management
Fieldwork location: Cambodia
Topic: Belonging on the Margins: Exploring National Identity Among Cham Muslims in Rangsei Village, Cambodia


Lazarus Chok

Degree: BA Geography
Fieldwork location: Singapore
TopicTerminal estates: An ethnographic study of planned obsolescence in public housing estates in Singapore


Ming Kit Lim

Degree: MSc Public Administration and Government
Fieldwork location: Singapore
Topic: Engendering Participatory Governance in Paternalistic States: A Case Study of ‘Our Singapore Conversation’ 


Rio Grace Otara

Degree: MSc in Gender, Development and Globalization
Fieldwork location: Philippines
TopicLife Histories of Muslim Women Leaders of the Bangsamoro Islamic Women’s Auxiliary Brigade in the Philippines


Katie Parkinson

Degree: MSc in International Development and Humanitarian Emergencies
Fieldwork location: Thailand
TopicConstructing ‘Home’ in Exile: Perspectives of Shan Refugees in Thailand