Freedom Academy January 2009

16 – 18 January 2009.
Theme: “Globalisation, the free market and developing countries”
Venue: Residence Hotel, UNITEN, Selangor

Globalisation and the free market are taking a bashing. The global economic turmoil has resulted in claims that we are looking at the end of capitalism. And, for many years we have been told that globalization, trade liberalization, and capitalism are bad for the poor and for developing countries generally. But what does free market capitalism really entail? Are the criticisms justified?

University students, graduates, and young professionals from Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia and Brunei are invited to attend Malaysia Think Tank’s second Freedom Academy which will be held on 16 – 18 January 2009 (Friday – Sunday) at Residence Hotel, UNITEN, Bangi, Selangor, Malaysia.

At this Freedom Academy participants will study in depth the true meaning and morality of capitalism, how globalisation has brought prosperity to developing economies, and why free market capitalism is still the way for forward.

We are particularly looking for those sympathetic to, or are curious about, libertarian and classical liberal ideas.

Come and enjoy the Freedom Academy! You will be challenged intellectually and you will get an invaluable opportunity to network with like-minded friends.

Click here for application form

The Programme

Come with an open mind, and go back with a good understanding of the positive impact brought by globalisation and the free market to developing economies.

In this Freedom Academy, we will discuss important topics including:

  • The financial crisis: causes and solutions
  • The meaning and morality of capitalism and the free market
  • The role of government
  • The impact of globalization on developing economies
  • How the market works and can the market produce social justice for the poor
  • Case studies from other countries

This Freedom Academy will be conducted in English.

Attendance fee

Fees are to be paid in full before the start of the Freedom Academy.

RM325.00 (only RM195 for Kelab Wau Bebas members, i.e. participants of previous Freedom Academy) – which will cover all meals from Friday dinner to lunch on Sunday, lectures, books, delegates pack, and accommodation (shared twin room) at Residence Hotel.

RM195.00 (only RM175 for Kelab Wau Bebas members) – without accommodation.


The Malaysia Think Tank can offer scholarships to selected applicants. You can apply for full or partial scholarships to cover attendance fee. We do not pay for travel expenses. The Malaysia Think Tank reserves the right to determine the value of scholarship to be awarded.


All applications must be received before Monday 5 January 2009.

Successful applicants will be informed by as soon as possible, before Friday 9 January 2009.

Further information

For further information, please contact Noor Amin bin Ahmad via email

Click here for application form


Professor Julian Morris, Executive Director, International Policy Network.

Julian graduated from Edinburgh University in 1992 with a degree in economics. After pursuing graduate work in economics (leading to two masters degrees), he worked at the Institute of Economic Affairs and in 1998 was appointed Director of the IEA’s Environment and Technology Programme. In his spare time, he completed a Graduate Diploma in Law at the University of Westminster in 1999. In 2001, Julian founded the International Policy Network, a think-tank based in London that works on global policy issues relating to health, environment, trade, and development. In 2002, he was appointed a Visiting Professor at the University of Buckingham.

Julian is the author or editor of many papers and books, including Environment and Health: Myths and Realities (co-edited with Kendra Okonski; International Policy Press, 2004), Sustainable Development: Promoting Progress or Perpetuating Poverty (Profile Books, 2002), and Ideal Matter: Globalisation and the Intellectual Property Debate (co-written with Rosalind Mowatt, Duncan Reekie, and Richard Tren; Centre for the New Europe, 2002). He is also co-editor of the Electronic Journal of Sustainable Development and a member of the editorial board of Energy and Environment. His articles and book reviews have appeared in The Financial Times, The Sunday Times (UK), The Australian, The Wall Street Journal Europe, Economic Times (India), Business Day (South Africa), The Daily Telegraph (UK), Economic Affairs, Nature, Toxicology, and various other newspapers and journals. He also regularly appears on TV and radio.

Dr Khalil Ahmad, President, Alternate Solutions Institute, Pakistan.

Dr. Khalil Ahmad studied Philosophy, History, Economics and Literature, and holds a Ph.D. in Philosophy from University of the Punjab, and till 2006 taught courses on Philosophy and Education to graduate and post-graduate classes. During his college and university days, he had been an ardent Marxist, but two philosophers Sir Karl Popper’s and Frederick August Hayek’s ideas converted him to Libertarianism.

Khalil founded the Alternate Solutions Institute, first free market think tank of Pakistan, and heads it. He frequently contributes articles on the current issues to various local/foreign newspapers including The News, Business Recorder, The Post, Pakistan Observer, The Frontier Post/Asian Wall Street Journal, South China Morning Post, Mint, Globe & Mail. He has published more than two dozen articles on the rule of law movement in the above-mentioned local papers. He has published a booklet (The Greatest Battle for the Rule of Law in Pakistan) on the rule of law movement in Pakistan.

Khalil has also published a number of research papers, articles and columns on economic, political, social, philosophical, literary, and current issues. His articles pioneer free market themes and ideas in Pakistan.

Alec Van Gelder, Network Director, International Policy Network.
Alec van Gelder is Network Director at International Policy Network, a think tank based in London. Among other publications, Alec is author of “Dirigiste Divide; how Governments obstruct development and access to ICTs” and “Nashville in Africa” and his work on trade, health, technology and development issues has been published in many newspapers including: the Globe and Mail, Boston Globe, Business Day, Wall Street Journal and International Herald Tribune. Alec holds a Master’s degree in International Economics and Development from UCL in Belgium and a Bachelor of Science in Finance from Lehigh University in the United States. He speaks English, Spanish, French and Dutch with fluency.

Wan Saiful Wan Jan – MTT Director General & Head of Libertarian Education Project (LEAP).
Wan Saiful is Director General of the Malaysia Think Tank and heads MTT’s Libertarian Education Project (LEAP). He is also Editor of, a joint Cato Institute – Malaysia Think Tank project for speakers of the Malay language (Bahasa Melayu). Wan Saiful boarded at Sekolah Alam Shah, Kuala Lumpur, and then Tonbridge School, England. He went to the University of Liverpool, Northumbria University and Middlesex University Business School, London. He holds a BA (Hons) in Management and an MSc in Research Methodologies. Wan Saiful has worked for the British Conservative Party’s Research Department, and, prior to that, the think tank Commonwealth Policy Studies Unit. He was also vice chair of his local Conservative Association, which oversees two parliamentary constituencies. In May 2007, he contested in the English local elections as a Conservative Party candidate. He is now Head of Policy for the Conservative Muslim Forum.

Although he now lives in England, he follows Malaysian politics very closely, having joined the Islamic Party of Malaysia (PAS) since 1993. During his university years, he was active in HIZBI, a UK-based student organisation with close links to PAS. He gradually climbed the ranks in HIZBI, holding various positions including Secretary-General, President and was finally appointed to the highest post as Mursyid. His writings have appeared in various Malaysian newspapers including Berita Harian, Utusan Malaysia, The Star, The Sun, New Sabah Times, Malaysiakini and Harakah.

Click here for application form

Further information

For further information, please contact Noor Amin bin Ahmad via email

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