US-J-SEA Fellowship Year 1 Fellow: Kei Namba

Residency: February - March 2019
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BiographyKei Namba

Kei Namba recently defended her PhD dissertation (Political Science) at Free University of Berlin, Germany. Her research interests focus on water and environmental politics and development in Southeast Asia and Japan. She has previously worked in business in Japan, China, and Indonesia and was engaged in major power and infrastructure projects. 

Research Topic: U.S.-Japan-Southeast Asian Cities Cluster for Water and Environmental Development Partnerships

This project aims to assess the role of U.S.-Japan alliance on the effectiveness and the norm dynamics of water and climate governance through multi-stakeholder partnerships in Southeast Asia, which is considered as "a global hotspot for water crisis" (ADB 2016). By applying a multi-level governance approach, this project will explore the role of the U.S.-Japan alliance through complex governance coordination and networks at different levels of governance (global, regional and local) in Southeast Asia. Among many water-related problems, high Non-Revenue Water (NRW) rates are critical issues in Southeast Asia. NRW refers to water that is lost from the water supply system because of leaks, bursts or theft, which is related to institutional and governance causes. Both Japan and the U.S. are deeply involved in Southeast Asia and transnational development cooperation contexts through local level partnerships in the water sector. Therefore, it would be highly significant to explore the role of the U.S.-Japan-Southeast Asian triangle knowledge exchange. This project especially highlights knowledge transfer through U.S.-Japan-Southeast Asian cities clusters. I intend to identify not only the rationales between U.S.-Japan cities alliances for cooperation but also which kind of norms and knowledge are transferred at which levels (local, regional, and multi-level) will be analyzed.

*(Please note: Email addresses are only active during the visitor's residency at the East-West Center in Washington)