Barangay hall in Pampanga (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

Nicole Curato is our Philippines editor

Dear New Mandala readers,

I’m exceptionally pleased to let you know that Dr Nicole Curato will be joining the New Mandala team as our first-ever Philippines editor.

To many of you, Nicole will need no introduction—she’s one of the most prominent scholars of contemporary Philippine politics and her commentary thereon appears regularly in the Philippine and international media.

The unique sociological lens Nicole brings to the task of understanding the rise and rule of Rodrigo Duterte can be seen in her contributions to CNN PhilippinesRapplerThe Conversation and the New York Times. Many readers will also know her as the editor of the recent Duterte Reader: Critical Essays on Rodrigo Duterte’s Early Presidency, which has been widely recognised as a must-read assessment of the first year of Dutertismo in practice.

With Nicole steering New Mandala’s Philippines coverage, we will be bringing you fresh perspectives on the causes and consequences of populist rule in the Philippines, considering the influence of political institutions, the legacies of history, new media technologies, political economy and more. As always, we will always strive to complement big-picture analyses with viewpoints from the ground—particularly from among the communities which supported and continue to support Duterte. Indeed, what stands out in Nicole’s work is a sympathy and respect for the perspectives of these Filipinos, despite her steadfastly critical standpoint vis a vis the president and his politics.

In her day job, Nicole is a Senior Research Fellow at the Centre for Deliberative Democracy and Global Governance at the University of Canberra. She holds an Australian Research Council Discovery Early Career Research Fellowship for her work on democratic innovations in post-disaster Philippines. Her academic work has appeared in journals including the Journal of Contemporary Asia, Current Sociology, and Policy Sciences. She is currently an Associate Editor of the journal Political Studies, and has served as Special Issue Editor for Critical Asian Studies and the Philippine Sociological Review.

As always, we welcome submissions of thoughtful and original material on the Philippines that New Mandala readers could benefit from. You can contact Nicole directly at 

Liam Gammon | Editor

The Philippines at New Mandala

Historical Perspectives on Philippine Contemporary Art

A historically-focussed review of the AGNSW's Passion + Procession: Art of the Philippines exhibition.

From datus to trapos: reading Philippine history in the OED

How an English dictionary documents different eras of linguistic exchange between Filipinos and their colonisers.

Duterte’s exceptionalism and the pitfalls of military rule

The authoritarian president would have us believe military force can solve Mindanao’s problems. History shows how wrong he is.