LeidenAsiaCentre (LAC)
Konrad Adenauer Stiftung (KAS)
IAFOR Research Centre at OSIPP (IRC)
Overview of the programme

Contagious viral diseases have affected the Asian continent in the past

In recent decades, the SARS and MERS outbreaks stand out. In Asia, the highly interdependent economies have exposed the speed with which pandemics can spread. Intensive regional travel and business connections have caused every area in the region to be hit hard, highlighting the vulnerability of global health governance and international labour migration. Every actor in the region has dealt with COVID-19 differently in the absence of clear and effective leadership. Moreover, the WHO’s role in Asia as a global health organization is coming under increasing pressure. While its credibility is slowly being eroded by public displays of incompetence and negligence, it has also become an arena of contestation between the US, the largest contributor to the organization, and China. The withdrawal of the US from the WHO threatens to undermine global health governance.

This research attempts to address this issue by examining how global health governance and international labour migration in Asia have evolved during the SARS, MERS, and COVID-19 pandemics. Specifically, by looking at policy adjustments, legitimacy, and public perceptions, within the framework of Asia, this project attempts to explain the long-term effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. The findings will be compiled in an edited volume to be published by the Amsterdam University Press upon completion.

Understanding the Limitations and Future of Transnational Migrant Labor and Global Health Governance in Asia (2020-21)

Project Managers

  • Anoma van der Veere (Principle Investigator; IRC & LeidenAsiaCentre)
  • Florian Schneider (Director, LeidenAsiaCentre)

Research Fellows

  • Nguyen Anh Tuyet (OSIPP/IRC)
  • Yumi Ishikawa (OSIPP/IRC)

Research Intern

  • Yow Shuning (Osaka University/IRC)


  • To be updated in January 2021.

Banner Image: Antipolo City, Philippines - April 2, 2020: Police officer wear an improvised personal protective equipment while on duty during the lockdown or community quarantine due to Covid 19 virus outbreak. Photo: Editorial junpinzon / Shutterstock.com

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