Engaging Faith Communities in Southeast Asia: An Issues and Priority Agenda

Author: Katherine Marshall

January 8, 2013

In Southeast Asia’s diverse religious landscape, religion tends to be taken for granted except when it contributes to social strife and violence. Religious actors do, however, play critical social, political, and economic roles in some settings and are engaged development actors, especially in humanitarian emergencies. This brief highlights two 2010 Berkley Center/World Faiths Development Dialogue reports resulting from a regional review and consultations on the development work of faith-inspired organizations in Southeast Asia. The review drew on background desk research, interviews with practitioners, and an issues consultation in Phnom Penh, Cambodia in December 2009. Seven issues are highlighted: coordination and harmonization of development work, approaches to governance and corruption, peacebuilding engagement, action on environment and climate change, work with orphans and vulnerable children, approaches to evaluation, and proselytizing.

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