Robert is an Englishman who has lived most of his life in Asia. He speaks Lao, Thai, French, Malay and Indonesian. Awarded a doctorate for his studies among the hill peoples of Laos and Thailand, he lectured in anthropology at the University of Singapore before joining the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. Often stationed in remote hardship stations, where he witnessed all too frequently man's inhumanity to man, he escaped from hardships and dangers into the world of writing. He considers 19 years within the hullabaloo of the UN the best apprenticeship for a writer of the absurd and recognizes that while he can take humour to its rococo limits, he can never quite equal the black comedy of the real world.
Taking a very early retirement from the UN, he joined the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office in 2000 as Head of the British Trade Office in the Lao People's Democratic Republic. He spent a year in northern Viet Nam advising the government on poverty reduction, before returning in 2005 to live and write in Laos and neighbouring Thailand.
Robert, under the name Robert Cooper, has written widely on the region, including the well-known Culture Shock Thailand and Thais Mean Business. He has also written cultural guide books to Bahrain, Bhutan, Croatia, and Indonesia, and the ethnography The Hmong. Red Flag is the second in the series chronicling the Colonel's quixotic attempts to right the wrongs of the world. Robert Fox is also author of Professor Dog, a comedy set in Singapore.