The 50th anniversary of ASEAN in 2017 was cause for celebration. Ten highly diverse countries have navigated five decades of domestic and geopolitical turbulence, economic change and technological disruption to emerge as a strong community of nations.
But looking ahead, the challenges are rising as profound shifts occur at accelerating speed. A broad-based economic recovery is welcome, yet it is fuelling deepening income inequality and rising environmental pressures. Geopolitically, we are moving from a unipolar system of governance towards a multipolar and multiconceptual order with precarious friction points. Nation states face new threats to stability and eroding public trust.