People Feature

Lily Zubaidah Rahim

Associate Professor in Government & International Relations, University of Sydney

Lily Zubaidah Rahim is an A/Professor in Government & International Relations and a specialist in authoritarian governance, democratisation, Southeast Asian Politics, political Islam and ethnic politics.  

Her books include The Singapore Dilemma: The Political and Educational Marginality of the Malay Community, (Oxford University Press 1998/2001; translated to Malay by the Malaysian National Institute for Translation), Singapore in the Malay World: Building and Breaching Regional Bridges (Routledge, 2009), Muslim Secular Democracy (PalgraveMacmillan, 2013), The Politics of Islamism: Diverging Visions and Trajectories (PalgraveMacmillan, 2018) and The Limits of Authoritarian Governance in Singapore’s Developmental State(PalgraveMacmillan, 2019). Her current comparative politics book project focuses on regime change and policy reform in the Malaysia, Indonesia and Tunisia.

Lily has published in international journals such as Democratization,Contemporary Politics, Journal of Contemporary Asia, Journal of Comparative and Comparative Politics, Critical Asian Studiesand the Australian Journal of International Affairs. Her sole-authored journal article ‘Governing Muslims in Singapore’s Secular Authoritarian State’ was short-listed for the Boyer Prize by the Australian Journal of International Affairs (AJIA).

Lily is Vice-President of the Australian Association for Islamic and Muslim Studies (AAIMS) and Co-Convener of the Social Inclusion Network (SIN) at the University of Sydney. She was Convener of the multi-disciplinary ‘Religion, State and Society’ (RSS) Network and President of the Malaysia and Singapore Society of Australia(MASSA) – the peak academic association on Malaysia and Singapore Studies in Australia. She has served as a consultant to the Asia-Europe Foundation and was commissioned by the United Nations Research Institute for Social Development and the United Nations Human Rights Commission to report on the status of ethnic and indigenous minorities in Southeast Asia.  

Through the years, Lily has been successful in attaining external grants from the Australian Research Council (ARC), Australia-Malaysia Institute (DFAT), Commonwealth Attorney General's Department and The Qatar Foundation.

Lily Zubaidah Rahim