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Matthew Wheeler

Senior Analyst, South East Asia
Bangkok, Thailand

Crisis Group Role

Matt Wheeler joined Crisis Group in May 2012. Based in Bangkok, he researches and produces Crisis Group reports and briefings focusing primarily on political conflict in Thailand and the insurgency in Thailand’s southernmost provinces.

Areas of Expertise

  • Thai politics
  • South East Asian security
  • Democratisation
  • Insurgency and counter-insurgency

Professional Background

  • Visiting Researcher, Institute of Security and International Studies, Chulalongkorn University (Bangkok)
  • Thailand-based Fellow, Institute of Current World Affairs
  • Researcher, Asian Security Issues, RAND Corporation
  • Fellow, Blakemore Foundation (Bangkok)
  • Fellow, Empowering Network for International Thai Studies
  • M.A. in Asian Studies, Harvard University

Select Publications

  • “Thailand’s Southern Insurgency”, Daljit Singh, ed., Southeast Asian Affairs 2014 (Singapore: Institute of Southeast Asian Studies, 2014)
  • “Thailand,” Regional Outlook 2011-12 (Singapore: Institute of Southeast Asian Studies, 2011)
  • “Bangkok Bombs,” Asian Conflicts Report (2010)
  • “People’s Patron or Patronizing the People? The Southern Border Provinces Administrative Centre in Perspective”, Contemporary Southeast Asia, vol. 32, no. 2 (2010)
  • “Understanding Thailand’s Political Crisis,” Asian Conflicts Report (March 2010)
  • “Legitimacy, Counterinsurgency, and Order 66/2523”, Rian Thai: International Journal of Thai Studies 2 (2009)
  • “The U.S.A., the War on Terror and Thailand’s Southern Violence,” Chaiwat Satha-Anand, ed., Imagined Land? The State and Southern Violence in Thailand (Tokyo: ILCAA 2009)
  • “China Expands its Southern Sphere of Influence,” Jane’s Intelligence Review (June 2005)
  • Thai-Vietnamese Relations in the Post-Cold War Period, 1988-2000. ISIS Occasional Paper 4, (Bangkok: Institute of Security and International Studies, 2001)


  • English (native) 
  • Thai (fluent)

In The News

10 Jun 2017
[The Barisan Revolusi Nasional sees its struggle as] nationalist and anti-colonial. Subordinating their struggle to a forlorn agenda imposed by outsiders would be counter-productive, if not suicidal. The Straits Times

Matthew Wheeler

Senior Analyst, South East Asia
28 Apr 2017
The militants [of the National Revolutionary Front] continue to demonstrate that they have the capabilities to launch attacks across the region despite of the security measures by the Thai state. Voice of America

Matthew Wheeler

Senior Analyst, South East Asia
10 Apr 2017
[The main southern Thai insurgent group BRN] perceive the current (peace) process as one driven by Bangkok and Kuala Lumpur for their own interests. AFP

Matthew Wheeler

Senior Analyst, South East Asia
28 Aug 2016
The bombings [in Thailand] may have been intended to compel the military government to reconsider its approach to the conflict in the deep south. The Washington Post

Matthew Wheeler

Senior Analyst, South East Asia
24 Aug 2016
Two years of military rule haven't really resolved any of the fundamental problems [in Thailand] ... and the constitution won't succeed in doing that either. The day of reckoning is just being delayed. AP

Matthew Wheeler

Senior Analyst, South East Asia