Jason Tower is the country director for the Burma program at USIP.
Tower has over 20 years of experience working on conflict and security issues in China and Southeast Asia. Prior to USIP, he worked to establish the Beijing office of the American Friends Service Committee and initiated programming across North and Southeast Asia on the impacts of cross-border investments on conflict dynamics.
During this time, Tower also worked extensively in Burma on peace and security issues. He previously served as Southeast Asia program manager for the PeaceNexus Foundation, managing a portfolio of grants and partnerships in China, Burma and Cambodia.
Tower’s research focuses on a range of issues at the nexus of crime and conflict in Southeast Asia. Recent work includes a study of the impacts of transnational criminal networks on conflict in Burma and regional security across Southeast Asia; a report on criminal activity on the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI); and a review of the impacts of the BRI on conflict. Additionally, Tower has also published more than a dozen articles analyzing the impacts of the Myanmar coup, including on regional security in Asia.
Tower completed his undergraduate work in economics and international studies at St. Louis University and his graduate studies in political science and Asian studies at the University of Michigan. He is fluent in Mandarin and has been named a Fulbright research student, a Fulbright-Hays scholar and a Harvard-Yenching fellow.