SEA+ Research Group

SEA+ Research Group

AIKOL is working towards laying down the foundation for just laws and just legal systems. Towards this end, a research group should be formed to focus on the development of laws affecting the region. Through various activities such as research, conference, publication etc, the Research Group aims to promote greater understanding of ASEAN and sharing transformative ideas, experience and information towards ASEAN cooperation and integration. The unique feature of SEA + Research Group is that research will also be extended to issues on ASEAN relations with other states beyond the region that have interest in the region. This is reflected with the plus symbol (+) in the name.

The Research Group pursues the following objectives:

  1. To promote study, continuous education, research, publication, negotiation and community service focusing on ASEAN development plus ASEAN relations and cooperation with other states beyond ASEAN region.
  2. To promote greater understanding and awareness of latest development of laws affecting the region, to explore issues and challenges in promoting mutual interest and cooperation such as in the area of regional peace, stability and economic interest.
  3. To become a source of reference in assisting Malaysia and other member states in the formulation of policy and decision relating to international affairs including trade, investment, environment, maritime and human rights to continually increase the level of confidence of international community on bilateral, regional and multilateral cooperation.
  4. To provide training, educational, research and negotiation programme in fulfilling the need of expertise and skills in the area of ASEAN law and beyond among stakeholders including industrial players, government sectors and civil society, locally and overseas.
  5. To foster close cooperation and build up networking with various institutions and organisations in sharing knowledge and ideas on common interests and provide solution to various issues confronting the region.

The SEA + Research Group members comprise of staff of the faculty and are led by a coordinator. The Membership is also opened to members from other Kulliyyah. The following names are the coordinator and members:


Area of interest

Dr. Nasarudin Abdul Rahman 

Competition Law

Prof. Dr. Mohammad Naqib Eishan Jan 

International Law, International Humanitarian law

Prof. Dr. Farid Sufian Shuaib

Media and Communications, Constitutional Law

Prof. Dr. Abdul Ghafur Hamid

Public and Private International Law, Law of the Sea, International Trade Law, International Human Rights and Humanitarian Law, Law of International Organisations

Prof. Dr. Ida Madieha Abdul Ghani Azmi

Intellectual Property Law, ICT and IT Law

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Mohd Hisham Mohd Kamal

International Law (including Public and Private International Law, Law of the Sea, International Trade Law)

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Maizatun Mustafa

Environmental Law (including Environmental Impact Assessment, Pollution Law, Heritage Law)

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Sonny Zulhuda

Data Protection Law, Cyber Law

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Mohd. Yazid Zul Kepli

International Law, Shipping Law

Dr. Zuraini Ab Hamid

Criminal Law, Human Rights

Dr. Muhamad Hassan Ahmad

Public International Law and International Humanitarian Law

Dr. Wan Mohd. Zulhafiz Wan Zahari

Energy Law, Commercial Law, Contract Law

Dr. Md. Zahidul Islam

Human Rights, Constitutional Law

Dr. Mahyuddin Daud

ICT Law - Internet Content Regulation

Research programme 

The SEA+ Research Group will focus, at the initial stage, on the following issues:

  1. Regional cooperation in combating human trafficking and in providing humanitarian assistance. In Southeast Asia, the problems of human trafficking for forced labour and sexual exploitation are becoming bigger. Southeast Asia are prone to natural disasters such as flood, earthquake and tsunami.  There are also occasional armed conflicts in the region.
  2. Market Integration at the ASEAN level – the research unit will also focus on latest development, current and future issues and challenges in achieving a highly integrated and cohesive economy. This covers various aspects including trade, services and investment, competition policy and consumer protection, investment and financial integration, IP, ICT and e-commerce, energy and environment, transportation etc.
  3. Legal harmonization at the ASEAN level – legal harmonization is important to create an integrated economy within ASEAN. Continuing study and discussion is needed to explore the extent to which ASEAN can adopt binding legal frameworks to govern the relationships between its members with different political-economic setting and cultural system.

The research will be further developed into study and discussion on broader cooperation between ASEAN and other major powers beyond ASEAN region in the areas of political security, economic and social cultural cooperation. Particularly, future research may be focusing on how ASEAN plus cooperation helps to realise ASEAN long term goals such as ASEAN integration; identifying opportunities, challenges in the implementation of ASEAN plus cooperation and strategic initiatives which are needed to facilitate the implementation of ASEAN plus cooperation work plan.

Academic programme

In relation to academic programme, the unit will first introduce an elective subject of ASEAN Law at the undergraduate level. Gradually, the unit will introduce Masters of Law (LLM), executive programmes and short term courses in ASEAN law. The main purpose of academic programme is to produce postgraduate students specialized in the area of ASEAN law, to produce high quality research and studies in the relevant area and to develop skills and expertise among stakeholders including government officials, industrial players etc; especially on negotiation and formulation of policy and law related to international and ASEAN law.

"Considering the benefit from the full ASEAN Economic Community; the time, space and cultural affinity, I would again suggest that there is a case to be made for intensification of an intra-Asia comparative law." 

Farid Sufian Shuaib, “Comparative Law in Asia: The Case for Intra-Asia Intensification” (2018) 1:1 Indonesian Comparative Law Review 1-4

Visiting scholars is opened to junior and senior scholars who are interested to conduct research in the area of ASEAN law and to conduct seminar to present their research

Adjunct professor is opened to current or former policy makers, advisors or negotiator working in the government or government agencies. Based on his/her expertise and experience, the adjunct professor will contribute to the Kulliyyah in the form of knowledge sharing through lecturer series, roundtable discussion, consultation etc.

The unit recognises the importance of and promotes collaboration with individuals, other institutions and organisations in promoting the development of ASEAN policy and law. The collaboration initiatives will serve as a platform to share and exchange information between partners on topic of ASEAN law, undertake joint programme on research and seminar, to provide funding and scholarship etc.