Democratic governance for Human Development in Asia and the Pacific; Civil society engagement, and electoral and parliamentary processes; Cross-border governance, civil service reform, and anti-corruption strategies
G. Shabbir Cheema's current work focuses on governance and democracy in Asia and the Pacific—including civil-society engagement, cross-border governance, electoral and parliamentary processes, transparency and anti-corruption strategies, and civil-service reform. He directs the Asia Pacific Governance and Democracy Initiative (AGDI).
Before joining the East-West Center, Dr. Cheema was Program Director, Department of Economic and Social Affairs, United Nations (2001–2007), Director of the Governance Division of the United Nations Development Programme (1995–2001), and Manager of the Urban Development Unit (1990–1995). As a senior UN official, he provided leadership in crafting country-level democratic governance and public-administration programs and designing regional and global research and training programs in electoral and parliamentary systems, human rights, innovation and leadership in the public sector, transparency and accountability of government, urban management, and decentralization.
Dr. Cheema has been a Visiting Fellow at the Harvard University's Ash Institute for Democratic Governance and Innovation. He was the convener of the Ash Institute's Study Group of Eminent Scholars on Decentralizing Governance.
From 1980 to 1988, Dr. Cheema was a Development Administration Planner at the United Nations Center for Regional Development in Nagoya, Japan. He has taught at the Universiti Sains Malaysia (1975–1979), the University of Hawaii (1988–1989) and New York University (2002–2007).
Dr. Cheema is the author of Building Democratic Institutions: Governance Reform in Developing Countries (Kumarian Press, 2005) and Urban Shelter and Services: Public Policies and Management Approaches (Praeger, 1987). He is a contributor and co-editor of the three volume series, Trends and Innovations in Governance (United Nations University Press, 2010), Decentralizing Governance: Emerging Concepts and Practices (Brookings Institution Press in cooperation with Harvard University,2007), and Reinventing Government for the Twenty First Century: State Capacity in a Globalizing Society (Kumarian Press, 2003).
Building Trust in Government: Innovations in Governance Reform in Asia (Tokyo and New York, United Nations University Press 2010), contributor and co-editor.
Engaging Civil Society: Emerging Trends in Democratic Governance (Tokyo and New York: United Nations University Press, 2010), contributor and co-editor.
Cross-border Governance in Asia: Regional Issues and Mechanisms (Tokyo and New York: United Nations University Press, 2010), contributor and co-editor.
Decentralizing Governance: Emerging Concepts and Practices, co- editor and contributor (Washington D.C. Brookings Institution Press in cooperation with the Ash Institute for Democratic Governance and Innovation, Harvard University, 2007).
Series editor and contributor for the five-volume Government Reinvention Series (New York: Published by the United Nations, 2007):
(1) The Challenges of Restoring Governance in Crisis and Post Conflict Countries
(2) Participatory and Transparent Governance
(3) Excellence and Leadership in the Public Sector: The Role of Education and Trainin
(4) Governance for Millennium Development Goals: Core Issues and Good Practices
(5) Public Administration and Democratic Governance: Governments Serving Citizens
Building Democratic Institutions: Governance Reform in Developing Countries (Westport: Kumarian Press, 2005), author.
Reinventing Government for the Twenty–First Century: State Capacity in a Globalizing Society (Westport: Kumarian Press, 2003), co-editor and contributor.
Urban Management Policies and Innovations in Developing Countries (New York: Praeger in coopeeration with the East-West Center, 1993), contributor and editor.
Urban Services in Developing Countries: Public and Private Roles in Urban Development (London: Macmillan Press, 1988), co-editor and contributor.
Urban Shelter and Services: Public Policies and Management Approaches (New York: Praeger, 1987), author.
Reaching the Urban Poor: Project Implementation in Developing Countries (Boulder, Colorado: Westview Press, 1986), editor and contributor,
Decentralization and Development: Policy Implementation in Developing Countries (Beverly Hills, California: Sage Publications, 1984), co-editor and contributor.
Implementing Decentralization Programs in Asia: Local Capacity for Rural Development (Nagoya, Japan: UN Centre for Regional Development, 1983), co-author.
Institutional Dimensions of Regional Development (Singapore: Maruzen Asia Press, 1980), contributor and editor.
Reports, Book Chapters, and Journal Articles
More than 50 reports, book chapters, and journal articles democratic governance, decentralization, poverty alleviation, urban management and globalization, including the following:
"Reinventing Government in the Pacific Basin: Political Leadership and Governmental Change" in Leadership for Development: What Globalization Demands of Leaders Fighting for Change, edited by Dennis A. Rondinelli and John M. Heffron (Boulder, Colorado: Lynne Rienner Publishers, forthcoming in 2007).
"Inclusive Governance and Democracy in Asia: Transitions and Challenges" in Globalization and Change in Asia, edited by Dennis A. Rondinelli and John M. Heffron (Boulder, Colorado: Lynne Rienner Publishers, 2007).
"Strengthening Accountability and Transparency in Timor Leste" (Dili: The World Bank and United Nations, 2006), co-author.
"Governance for Human Development: The Role of External Partners"in Public Administration and Development, 2001, co-author.
"Decentralized Governance for Human Development" in New Millennium, New Perspectives: The United Nations, Security and Governance, edited by Ramesh Thakur and Edward Newman (Tokyo: United Nations University Press, 2000).
"Capacity Assessment and Development in a Systems and Strategic Management Context" (New York: United Nations Development Program, 1998), contributor and series edito.
"Corruption and Integrity Improvement Initiatives in Developing Countries" (New York and Paris: United Nations Development Program and OECD, 1998), series editor.
"Integrating Human Rights with Sustainable Human Development" (New York: United Nations Development Program in Cooperation with the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, 1998), editor and contributor.
"Reconceptualizing Governance" (New York: United Nations Development Program, 1997), contributor and series editor.
"Corruption and Good Governance" (New York: United Nations Development Program,1997), series editor.
"Priority Urban Management Issues in Developing Countries: The Research Agenda for the 1990s" in Mega-City Growth and the Future, edited by Roland J. Fuchs, Fu-Chen Lo, and Juha L. Uitto (Tokyo: United Nations University Press, 1994).
"Strengthening Urban Institutional Capabilities: Issues and Reponses" in Urban Policy Issues (Manila: Asian Development Bank, 1987).
"Evaluating the Impact of Policies and Projects: Experience in Urban Shelter and Basic Urban Services" in Regional Development Dialogue, Vol. 8, 1987, co-authored with Richard Ludwig.
"Urban Services in Metropolitan Areas: Meeting the Needs of the Urban Poor in Asia" in Regional Development Dialogue, Vol. 6, 1985, co-authored with Dennis Rondinelli.
"Decentralization in Developing Countries: A Review of Recent Experience" (Washington D.C. The World Bank, 1984), co-author with Dennis Rondinelli and John Nellis.
"Establishing Local Development Units" in Public Administration Review, June 1981.
"Changing Patterns of Administration in the Field: The Malaysian Case" in International Review of Administrative Sciences, Vol. 45, 1978.
"Malaysia's Development Strategy: The Dilemma of Redistribution with Growth" in Studies in Comparative International Development, Vol. 13, 1978.
"Local Leadership and Bureaucratic Politics in Malaysia" in Indian Journal of Public Administration, 1978, co-author.
"Rural Organization and Rural Development in Selected Malaysian Villages" (Kuala Lumpur: Asian and Pacific Development Administration Center, 1978), co-authored with Mohd. Nawawi, Paul Kaplan, and Syed Ahmed Hussei.
"Local Government in Malaysia" in Asian Survey, 1977, co-author.
"Peoples Communes, Panchayati Raj, and Basic Democracies: Local Government in People' Republic of China, India and Pakistan" in Approaches of Rural Development in Asia, edited by Inayatullah (Kuala Lumpur: Asian Centre for Development Administration, 1975).