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January 2020
Research and Publication News


Brunei International Relations

Dr Stephen C. Druce and Abdul Hai Julay’s current joint project explores the last 36 years of Brunei international relations. In particular, the project focuses on the factors that have shaped and impacted on these relations over time and affected national policy, the implications and benefits of being a small but wealthy state, Brunei’s mediation strategies, and the pragmatic approach that Brunei has generally taken to international relations. The project is further concerned with the relationship between international relations and Brunei’s economic diversification policy and how Brunei’s 2035 Vision relates to China’s Belt and Road initiative and the possible implications this may have for Brunei, both regionally in relation to ASEAN and in the wider world.

(Contact: stephen.druce@ubd.edu.bn & hai.julay@ubd.edu.bn)

Tawhidic Worldview and Islamic Aesthetics in the Art of Brunei Tenun (Woven Textiles)

Pg Dr Hjh Siti Norainna binti Pg Hj Besar and Associate Professor Ampuan Dr Haji Brahim bin Ampuan Haji Tengah are currently researching the concept of tawhid (tawheed and tauheed) in Brunei material culture. Tawhidic is the most significant element in Islamic arts and refers to the concept of unity, or oneness, of Allah. As a religion and way of life, Islam influences cultural practices in Brunei society, such as in the creation of various designs, motifs, and colour arrangements of Brunei weaving (kain tenun). Their project focuses on these three important points of intersection while conceptualising the fundamental aspects of the tawhidic worldview as they investigate the influence and importance of religious background and beliefs in material culture and how Islamic aesthetics are interpreted and are manifest in the patterns and work of designers and weavers in the production of Brunei traditional textiles.

(Contact norainna.besar@ubd.edu.bn & brahim.tengah@ubd.edu.bn)

Dusun ‘Siram Sindir’ Songs and the Dissemination of MIB Values

Another project led by Pg Dr Hjh Siti Norainna binti Pg Hj Besar, which includes Noralipah binti Mohamed from the Academy of Brunei Studies and several members of the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, focuses on the educational dissemination of MIB through siram, traditional Dusun songs that are sung to the rhythmic beat of a traditional wooden drum. There are two main categories of siram: siram sindir and siram ditaan. The project’s main focus are siram sindir songs, which are composed in order to convey advice or criticism of an individual or group and sung both by female and male specialist singers. These songs are composed spontaneously and in the presence of the person(s) criticized or given advice, using allegories and metaphors that serve to conceal the real meaning from general listeners. These songs are intend to educate and teach the individual(s) in a gentle way without hurting their feelings. Such songs are used as a way to educate and disseminate MIB values but to date this aspect of siram sindir songs has not been the subject of any thorough academic study. The project aims to explore the role and extent that siram sindir songs play among Brunei’s Dusun population in disseminating (MIB) through an examination of recordings of such songs.

(Contact norainna.besar@ubd.edu.bn)

Brunei Compendium Project

The Brunei Compendium Project, led by Dr Stephen C. Druce, is a major writing and publishing project that aims to produce a major reference work on Brunei that encompasses history, material culture, literature, governance, geography, international relations, Islam, culture, languages, youth and NGOs. In addition to many Academy of Brunei staff, the project includes contributors from four other UBD faculties. The results of this project will be published in Routledge’s prestigious handbook series as the Routledge Contemporary Handbook of Brunei that will be edited by Professor Ooi Keat Gin and Professor Victor T. King.

(Contact stephen.druce@ubd.edu.bn)

Fardhu Haji in Brunei and Indonesia from 1906 to 2017: A Comparative Historical and Cultural Study

The Director of the Academy of Brunei Studies, Dr Haji Tassim bin Abu Bakar, is currently leading a collaborative project with the Syarif Hidayatullah State Islamic University Jakarta. The project aims to present a comparative analysis of the Haji pilgrimage between Brunei and Indonesia from 1906 to 2017. The project is concerned with governmental management of the pilgrimage, the policies applied in relation to safeguarding the well-being, health and safety of pilgrims, the attitudes and perceptions of the pilgrims towards the ‘Haj’ and how they incorporate and express their own cultural practices in relation to the pilgrimage. Members of the project include the Academy’s Deputy Director, Associate Professor Hj Awg Asbol, and members from the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences.

(Contact: tassim.bakar@ubd.edu.bn)

A Celebratory Volume on Professor Donald Brown’s Historical-Anthropological Study of Brunei Society and Culture

This is a recently completed collaborative project between the Academy of Brunei Studies and UBD’s Institute of Asian Studies. The project’s aim was to produce a major book that celebrates and evaluates the important work of Professor Donald E. Brown on Brunei. The results of the project will be published as a monograph in Routledge’s Modern Anthropology Series, titled Continuity and Change in Brunei Darussalam: A Celebration and Evaluation of the Work of Professor Donald E. Brown, edited by Victor T. King and Stephen C. Druce. The manuscript is currently with the publisher.

(Contact stephen.druce@ubd.edu.bn)

The Rehabilitation of Drug Users in Brunei Darussalam

Academy of Brunei staff member Zulhilmi bin Hj Jaidin has completed his project on the effects of social control on drug users who are under the supervision programme of Brunei’s Narcotics Control Bureau. This was successfully submitted as a PhD thesis to Universiti Sains Malaysia, titled ‘Kesan Kawalan Sosial terhadap Pengguna Dadah yang Sedang Mengikuti Program Pengawasan di Cawangan Pengawasan, Biro Kawalan Narkotik, Brunei Darussalam’. Zulhilmi will graduate later this year.

(Contact: zulhilmi.jaidin@ubd.edu.bn)

Selected 2019/2020 Staff Publications

Abdul Hai Julay (2019). Chinese Tourists’ motivations In Coming to Brunei, Proceedings from The 3rd China-ASEAN Ethnic Cultural Forum 2019, Nanning, China.

Abdul Hai Julay. (2020). ASEAN-UK Relations in the Post-Brexit period. Conference on ASEAN-UK Relations in the Changing Regional Architecture, forthcoming proceedings. ASEAN Secretariat, Jakarta 18-19 February.

Abdul Hai Julay (in press 2020). The General Economic and International Vision of Brunei Darussalam. In The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), in the XXI Century, Editorial Project. University of Indonesia, Jakarta.

Druce, Stephen C. and Abdul Hai Julay. (2019). The Road to Brunei’s Economic Diversification: Contemporary Brunei-China Relations. In China and Southeast Asia in the Xi Jinping Era: An Edited Collection, ed. Alvin Cheng-Hin Lim and Frank Cibuka, USA: Lexington Books, pp. 139-152.

Druce, Stephen C. (2019). Of Native Concerns: Brooke, the Bugis and Borneo. In Borneo and Sulawesi Indigenous Peoples, Empires, and Area Studies, ed. Ooi Keat Gin. London: Routledge.

Druce, Stephen C. (2020). Political Impasse vs Economic Development: An Analysis of the West Papua Conflict in Indonesia. In Managing Conflicts in a Globalising ASEAN: Incompatibility Management through Good Governance, ed. Mikio Oishi, Singapore: Springer, pp. 89-116.

Druce, Stephen C. (2020) Myanmar’s Unwanted Ethnic Minority: A History and Analysis of the Rohingya Crisis. In Managing Conflicts in a Globalising ASEAN: Incompatibility Management through Good Governance, ed. Mikio Oishi, Singapore: Springer, pp. 17-46.

Druce, Stephen C. (July 2020). A South Sulawesi Hero and Villain: Qahhar Mudzakkar (Kahar Muzakkar) and His Legacy. International Journal of Asia Pacific Studies, 16 (2).

Haji Awg Asbol bin Haji Mail, Ampuan Haji Brahim bin Ampuan Haji Tengah, Haji Tassim Abu Bakar. (2019). History and development of Islamic education in Brunei Darussalam, 1900-1983: From home instruction to the religious primary school. International Journal of Innovation, Creativity and Change, 5 (2): 1082-1101.

Haji Awg Asbol bin Haji Mail, Ampuan Haji Brahim bin Ampuan Haji Tengah, Haji Tassim Abu Bakar. (2019). Arabic Schools in Negara Brunei Darussalam (1941-2005): Development and Challenges. International Journal of Innovation, Creativity and Charge, 7 (7): 351-370.

Haji Awg Asbol bin Haji Mail, Ampuan Haji Brahim bin Ampuan Haji Tengah & Haji Mohsin bin Abu Bakar. (2019). Politics of the Brunei Sultanate 1804-1906: Enduring the Storm to the Blessed Shores. Bandar Seri Begawan: Persatuan Sejarah Brunei (PESEBAR).

Haji Awg Asbol bin Haji Mail, Ampuan Haji Brahim bin Ampuan Haji Tengah, Nani Suryani binti Haji Abu Bakar, Hjh Asiyah Az Zahra binti Haji Ahmad Kumpoh & Haji Tassim bin Haji Abu Bakar. (2019). Melayu Islam Beraja, The Malay Islamic Monarchy in Negara Brunei Darussalam Prior to 1906: A Historical Study. Bandar Seri Begawan: Persatuan Sejarah Brunei (PESEBAR).

Haji Awg Asbol Bin Haji Mail & Nani Suryani binti Haji Abu Bakar. (2019). Laporan Tujuh Serangkai Kesannya Ke atas Pembentukan Perlembagaan Negeri Brunei 1959. In Borneo dalam Kepelbagaian Perspektif, eds, Ismail Ibrahim, Mat Zin Kib and Sim Chee Chiang. Kota Kinabalu: Universiti Malaysia Sabah, pp. 1-26.

Haji Awg Asbol bin Haji Mail & Ampuan Haji Brahim bin Ampuan Haji Tengah. (2019). Pengiran Bendahar Brunei dan Bendahara Melaka: Satu Perbandingan Peranan dan Isu Daulat dan Derhaka. Ishak Saat & Ku Boon Dar (ed.) Sejarah dan Rencam Warisan Alam Melayu, Johor Baharu: Universiti Tun Hussien Malaysia, 1-25.

Haji Awg Asbol Bin Haji Mail & Farahaina Anchong. (2019). Kedayan Daerah Brunei dan Muara: Sejarah Hak Milik Tanah, Rampak Serantau, Terbitan MABBIM, 2019, No.26, Bandar Seri Begawan: Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka, 328 – 348.

Haji Awg Asbol Bin Haji Mail. (2019). Hukum Kanun Brunei: Isu dan Peranannya Memperkasakan Perundangan Islam. In Prosiding Seminar Majlis Ilmu 2019 Majlis Ilmu Manuskrip Islam Mercu Tanda Ketamadunan Umat, eds, Hjh Rose Abdullah et. al. Bandar Seri Begawan: Urus Setia Majlis Ilmu 2019, pp. 1-19.

Pg Hajah Siti Norainna Pg Haji Besar, Hj Mohammad Abul Fadle Haji Maidin and Noralipah Mohamed. (in press 2020). Persepsi Halal Dalam Kalangan Pengguna Di Brunei Darussalam. Ulum Islamiyyah: The Malaysian Journal of Islamic Sciences.

Pg Hajah Siti Norainna Pg Haji Besar, Hj Mohammad Abul Fadle Haji Maidin and Noralipah Mohamed. (in press 2020). Perception of Malay Muslim Consumers on Halal Food Products in Brunei. In Halalan Thayyiban Products and Services. Bandar Seri Begawan: UNISSA.


Selected 2019/2020 Graduate Student Publications

Aminnuddin, N. A. (2020). Dataset on Islamic Ethical Work Behavior among Bruneian Malay Muslim Teachers with Measures Concerning Religiosity and the Theory of Planned Behavior. Data in Brief, 29: 105-157.

Aminnuddin, N. A. ( 2019). Predicting Islamic Ethical Work Behavior Using the Theory of Planned Behavior and Religiosity in Brunei. The Journal of Behavioral Science, 14 (1): 1-13.

Aminnuddin, N. A. (2019). Discriminatory Attitude toward Vulnerable Groups in Singapore: Prevalence, Predictors, and Pattern. The Journal of Behavioral Science, 14 (2): 15-30.

Aminnuddin, N. A. (2019). Demographic Factors and Religious Dimensions as Predictors of Islamic Ethical Work Behavior in Brunei. Psychological Thought, 12 (2): 185-201.

About Academy of Brunei Studies (APB)

APB was established in 1990 as a multi-disciplinary centre for study and research covering all aspects of life in Brunei Darussalam.

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