Natalie Sambhi

Natalie Sambhi

Natalie Sambhi is a nonresident fellow with the Foreign Policy program at Brookings. She is also the founder and executive director of Verve Research, an independent research collective focussed on the relationship between militaries and societies in Southeast Asia. Through her research, presentations, and publications, Sambhi is committed to helping people gain a more nuanced understanding of Indonesian civil-military relations, Indonesian defense policy and Southeast Asian security.

Natalie is also a Ph.D. scholar at the Strategic and Defence Studies Centre, the Australian National University, focussing on Indonesian military history. In 2018, the Royal United Services Institute awarded her the Leo Mahony bursary to support her doctoral research.

From 2016 to 2020, she was a research fellow with the Perth USAsia Centre. From 2012 to 2016, Natalie worked at the Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI) as an analyst and managing editor of ASPI’s blog, The Strategist. She has previously worked at the Department of Defence, University of Canberra and for the academic journal Asian-Pacific Economic Literature. In May 2014 and in January 2016, Natalie was a visiting fellow at the Center for a New American Security in Washington, D.C.

Natalie has been a guest lecturer and presenter at the Australian National University, Australian National Security College, Australian War College, Indonesian National Resilience Institute, Indonesian Defense University, Indonesian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Canadian Department of National Defence, and several international think tanks and universities. Her writing has appeared in Security Challenges journal, South China Morning Post, War On The Rocks, The Diplomat, The Interpreter, and The National Interest.

Born and raised in Perth, Western Australia, Natalie holds a Bachelor of Arts (Asian studies, hons.) from the University of Western Australia and a Master of Arts (international relations) and Master of Diplomacy from the Australian National University.

Network for Strategic Analysis, collaborator
Young Australians in International Affairs, board member

  • Areas of Expertise

    • Civil-military relations
    • Indonesian defense and security
    • Indonesian foreign policy
    • Indonesian military
  • Current Positions

    • Executive Director, Verve Research
  • Past Positions

    • Research Fellow, Perth USAsia Centre
    • Analyst & Managing Editor of The Strategist, Australian Strategic Policy Institute
    • Capability Analyst, Australian Department of Defence
  • Education

    • M.A., The Australian National University, 2010
    • M.Diplo., The Australian National University, 2010
    • B.A. (hons.), University of Western Australia, 2006
  • Languages

    • French
    • Indonesian
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