Spotlight on... | 23/10/2023

"Spotlight on..." New Doctoral Researcher Adhiraaj Anand

Adhiraaj Anand joined the GIGA Doctoral Programme in October 2023. The working title of his dissertation is “Youth Politics and Transnational Political Engagement in Taiwan, Thailand and Malaysia”. He holds a Master’s degree in in International Affairs from the National University of Singapore. Learn more about Adhiraaj in this interview.


  • What made you choose to do a PhD?

    During my masters, I found that I enjoy intellectual pursuits, conducting research and writing about various topics in politics and international affairs. I also discovered during my stint as an educational consultant that I enjoy working with young adults and being able to inspire them. I see myself as a good fit for a career in academia and my PhD as the first step towards fulfilling this goal.

    What is your motivation to address the topic of your PhD?

    In my years living in and travelling around countries across East and Southeast Asia, I have closely followed political developments in the region and had the opportunity to interact with politically engaged youth in different countries. I have noticed that they share some concerns and goals and engage which each other’s movements and struggles, the most notable example being the Milk Tea Alliance, an online Pan-Asian solidarity movement launched in 2019. I am interested in exploring at a deeper level whether shared issues drive activism by youth across the region, and if so through what mechanisms.

    What are you looking most forward to during your PhD studies?

    I look forward to writing and publishing more, building credibility as a voice on my topic and working with and learning from many wonderful people at the GIGA and beyond.

    Reading or writing

    The latter, even though I do much more of the former!

    Paperback book or eBook?

    Paperback books, as I already spend enough time staring at screens! Although e-books are more convenient.

    GIGA Doctoral Programme

    The GIGA has a long tradition of integrating young researchers into its research structure. This tradition culminated in the establishment of the GIGA Doctoral Programme. This programme seeks to provide a platform for young, international, and German academics, from which they can pursue their research and professional development, particularly in the field of comparative area studies (CAS).

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