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Derek vH. Luyten

Regional Director, Asia

Derek Luyten currently serves as the Regional Director for Asia at the International Republican Institute (IRI) after serving as the region’s Deputy Director for two years.  In this role, Luyten is responsible for strategically guiding program development and implementation for work in 12 countries throughout Asia ensuring programs are successfully executed.  Over the last three years Luyten has assisted with expanding the region’s portfolio to include new program countries and initiatives, rendering it one of the largest program regions at the Institute.                                     

Luyten has traveled extensively throughout Asia, both managing and implementing a variety of programming for political and civic actors as well as elected officials.  Luyten also served as the Country Director for IRI’s Thailand and Malaysia programs based in Bangkok, Thailand, overseeing programs which focused on public opinion research and political and civic engagement.  Before working in Asia, Luyten served in a variety of posts throughout the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), including Country Director in Morocco and nearly three years on the Institute’s Iraq program as the Program’s Director for Political Parties and Research.  While working in the MENA division Luyten established new IRI programs in Tunisia and Libya after the start of the Arab Spring, touching down in Tunis just days after the fall of the Ben Ali regime conducting assessments, identifying potential partners, and securing new avenues of funding.

Over the years Luyten has had the opportunity to serve as an election observer for both national and local contests in Burma (2015), Tunisia (2014, 2011), Fiji (2014), South Korea (2014), Thailand (2013), Timor-Leste (2017, 2012), Jordan (2010), Iraq (2009) and Cambodia (2007).

Prior to joining IRI in 2007, Luyten served as the political director for Representative Jim Gerlach’s successful re-election campaign, the largest congressional race in the 2006 cycle.  From 2005-2006, Luyten worked at the United States Treasury Department in the office of the United States Treasurer Anna Escobedo Cabral.

Luyten is fluent in French, proficient in Spanish and earned a master’s degree in international affairs from the Fletcher School at Tufts University.