Lately, in response to globalization involving almost all nations around the world, and a transnational swell of so-called Islamic revival, in Southeast Asia too, there is a growing interest in the tide of the Islamic revival, political Islam, or Islamism. Particularly since the Asian economic crisis, the increase in the Islamic clout in politics and economy is a remarkable and undeniable fact. Recent implementation of "the antiterrorism war" and subsequent terrorist bombings in Southeast Asia induced people (mainly those involved in the media) to point out gradual infiltration of organizations and powers under the influence of international terrorist groups such as Al Qaeda, Jama'a Islamia, and others who have Middle Eastern connection to the separatist movements in Southern Philippines and Thailand , which developed around a local agenda. It is not too much to say, however, that comprehensive scientific studies on how Islam in Southeast Asia actually affects the public domain; for example, influence of Islamism in the Middle Eastern Arab world and regions other than Southeast Asia has just begun to take shape. With researchers specializing in the Middle Eastern Arab world joining other core members, the ISEA project intends to provide basic knowledge on the (1) extent of influence Southeast Asia has received from outer regions like the Arab world while building up its intrinsic identity; (2) dynamics of the relationship between regional and external Islamic traditions and practices; and (3) how such dynamics may affect Southeast Asian politics, economy, conflicts, peace building, and other affairs in its public domain.
How do the dynamics of relationship between regional and external Islamic traditions and practices affect Southeast Asian politics, economy, peace building, and other affairs in its public domain?