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Home > Books & Journals > Journal Abstracts Last Updated: 14:23 03/09/2007
Journal Abstracts #137: May 6, 2004

Japanese Journal of Political Science

Journal Name: Japanese Journal of Political Science:
November 2003, Vol. 4, No. 2

ISSN: 1468-1099


Governance, Democracy, Consolidation and the 'End of Transition' (pp169-190)
TAKASHI INOGUCHI (Institute of Oriental Culture, University of Tokyo) and PAUL BACON (Institute of Oriental Culture, University of Tokyo)

The notion of governance: a multi-level phenomenon

There is a substantial literature on governance, but little agreement on precisely what it means, as a result of which the term is often used in different ways. A sophisticated and flexible formulation is offered by The Commission on Global Governance, which defines governance as 'the sum of the many ways individuals and institutions, public and private, manage their common affairs. It is a continuing process through which conflicting or diverse interests may be accommodated and cooperative action may be taken. It includes formal institutions and regimes empowered to enforce compliance, as well as informal arrangements that people and institutions either have agreed to or perceive to be in their interest' (1995: 2).

Prospects for the Consolidation of Democracy in East Central Europe (pp191-213)
STEN BERGLUND (Department of Social and Political Sciences, Írebro University, S-701 82 Írebro, Sweden)
Few events have drawn as much interest from the academic community as the breakdown of Soviet-style socialism in Central and Eastern Europe and the subsequent disintegration of the Soviet Union itself in the late 1980s and early 1990s. This paper might be classified as yet another in a continuous flow of scientific contributions, inspired by the collapse of communism. And this is indeed the case, but only in an oblique way.

Democratic Governance in South Korea: The Perspectives of Ordinary Citizens and Their Elected Representatives (pp215-240)
DOH CHULL SHIN (Department of Political Science, 113 Professional Building, University of Missouri at Columbia, Columbia, MO 65211.)
The accumulation of all powers, legislative, executive, and judiciary, in the same hands, whether of one, a few, or many, and whether hereditary, self-appointed, or elective, may justly be pronounced the very definition of tyranny. (James Madison, 1788)

Democracy is not only a (polyarchical) political regime but also a particular mode of relationship between state and citizens, and among citizens themselves, under a kind of rule of law that, in addition to political citizenship, upholds civil citizenship and a full net work of accountability. (Guillermo O'Donnell, 1999b)

Democratic Governance and Security in Indonesia (pp241-255)
As Indonesia democratises, a key feature of the country's political life has been a mixture of turmoil, hope and uncertainty. When Suharto's authoritarian regime collapsed in May 1998, Indonesia was experiencing the worst political and economic crises in more than three decades. On the political front, Suharto's collapse was preceded by communal violence, political turmoil, and state terrorism. Economically, the financial crisis, which came to Indonesia in December 1997, brought down the foundations of growth and pushed the country on to the brink of economic collapse. All these problems, which found their roots in the absence of democracy and good governance, worsened after the fall of Suharto. As the country moved towards democratic transition, however, society was imbued with a sense of hope for a better future, and that hope continues to exist until today. In that context, resolving current uncertainty constitutes the biggest challenge facing Indonesia in fulfilling the people's hope for a democratic future.

Governance in Russia: A View from the Bottom (pp257-271)
RICHARD ROSE (Centre for the Study of Public Policy, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow G1 1XH, Scotland)
The governance of Russia is important in a multiplicity of ways. As the successor state of the Soviet Union, it retains characteristics of a global superpower, including a nuclear arsenal and a permanent seat in the Security Council of the United Nations. As a country with land or sea borders extending from Japan and China across Central Asia to the boundaries of an enlarging European Union, Russian affairs concern neighbours across much of the globe. As a land rich in natural resources such as oil, gas and gold, controllers of these resources have significant assets in the international economy. As a political system that has made a massive turn from a post-totalitarian one-party state to a government holding free competitive elections, the Russian Federation is a leading example of a regime in transformation. Above all, as the primary institution affecting the lives of more than 140 million people, the governance of Russia is important to its citizens.

Regional Governance and East Central Europe: The EU, NATO and the Consolidation of Democracy (pp273-292)
SHARON L. WOLCHIK (George Washington University, Washington, USA)
Over a decade has passed since the heady days of 1989 and 1990 when communist governments fell one after the other and almost all political parties taking part in elections shared the same goals: Democracy, the Market, and Back to Europe. In December 2002, the efforts of the new leaders of these countries to 'return to Europe' bore fruit in an event that many had in 1989 regarded as too farfetched to imagine, the invitation of most of the countries in the region to join the EU in 2004 or 2007. The culmination of a decade-long process of harmonization and negotiation, this invitation symbolized the success of these countries in instituting political democracies and market economies. But how complete is this process, particularly in the political realm?

The Theory and Practice of Chinese Grassroots Governance: Five Models (pp293-314)
BAOGANG HE (East Asian Institute, National University of Singapore and School of Government, the University of Tasmania, Australia)

Theories of governance and Chinese understandings

There is a vast and eclectic literature about many forms of governance, including markets, bureaucratic hierarchies, associations and different types of networks. The Commission on Global Governance, for example, defines governance as 'the sum of the many ways individuals and institutions, public and private, manage their common affairs. It is a continuing process through which conflicting or diverse interests may be accommodated and cooperative action may be taken. It includes formal institutions and regimes empowered to enforce compliance, as well as informal arrangements that people and institutions either have agreed to or perceive to be in their interest'. Thus, 'at the global level, governance has been viewed primarily as intergovernmental relationships, but it must now be understood as also involving non-governmental organizations (NGOs), citizens' movements, multinational corporations and the global mass of dramatically enlarged influence'.

Regional Governance: Lessons from European Involvement in Yugoslav Conflicts (pp315-329)
MAMORU SADAKATA (Nagoya University, Japan)
The fragmentation of Yugoslavia has wrought extensive political and social change in the Balkans and Europe more generally. After the collapse of communism and the breakup of Yugoslavia, many Balkan countries have transformed their political systems. European states have attempted to engage and manage this breakup on an individual and collective basis. The involvement of the international community, and above all of EU countries adjacent to the Balkans, has greatly influenced processes of conflict resolution and post-conflict reconstruction in the region.

Regional Governance and East and Southeast Asia: Towards the Regulatory State? (pp331-347)
SUEO SUDO (Nanzan University)
In the post-Cold War era, instead of peace and stability, we have witnessed many instances of regional conflict, domestic chaos, and civil strife. Moreover, economic globalization and the growing importance of transnational institutions have eroded traditional bases of political power. As such, emerging patterns of governance should be seen as 'institutional responses to rapid changes in the state's environment' (Pierre 2000: 3). Governance is carried out by many economic and political actors at a variety of levels, encompassing national government, regional institutions, and networks of non-state actors.

Executive Turnovers in 2003 (pp349-351)
TAKASHI INOGUCHI (Institute of Oriental Culture, University of Tokyo)
Executive turnovers during the second Koizumi cabinet (September 2002-present, as of August 2003) register the lowest of all the cabinets since the Miyazawa cabinet (November 1991ľAugust 1993). This is predictable from Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi's pledge when he first became Prime Minister in April 2001. He promised to appoint one cabinet minister (not two ministers or more) for one agency during the tenure of one cabinet. Furthermore, he pledged that he would do so without receiving a recommendation from factions of the governing Liberal Democratic Party. His first pledge reflects primarily Koizumi's belief that his appointments should last the full tenure of the cabinet as they are presumably the best for the task. His second pledge reflects his belief that LDP factions should cease, and, as a matter of fact, they have recently ceased to be a major factor determining Koizumi's politics. Both factors are related to each other.

Japanese Elections in 2003: The LDP Strikes Back? (pp353-355)
STEVEN R. REED (Faculty of Policy Studies, Chuo University)
The LDP predominant party system ended in 1993. The big question now is whether an effective opposition party can be created or whether the LDP will find a way to re-establish predominance. One key will be gubernatorial elections. Governors sit at the pivot between national and local politics. All parties except the Communists strive to be part of the gubernatorial coalition because only then can they influence distributive political decisions. Most gubernatorial elections are thus noncompetitive. Recent gubernatorial elections, however, have given some hope to those who would create an alternative to the LDP. Even if an anti-LDP candidate wins, he will be tempted to return to the LDP fold, or at least remain neutral in national politics. Recent gubernatorial elections in Aomori illustrate these pressures and complexities. Aomori was one of three prefectures where the New Frontier Party won gubernatorial elections. The NFP represented the first failed attempt to create a credible alternative to the LDP and we can learn much from its failure.

Opinion Polls in 2003 (pp357-359)
IKUO KABASHIMA (Faculty of Law, University of Tokyo with assistance of Shohei Mabuchi)
On 26 April 2001, Junichiro Koizumi emerged as the new prime minister of Japan, representing the public's desire for economic recovery through fundamental structural change in Japanese politics. More than two years have passed since then, and Japan has seen neither significant economic revival nor major changes in its political and administrative structures. People's expectation and faith in this henjin ("weirdo" as labeled by Former Foreign Minister Makiko Tanaka) prime minister for rescuing Japan's economy has been greatly undermined as Japan's unemployment rate stays high and stock prices low. Japanese banks are performing poorly as usual, and bad loans seem to never go away or decrease in amount. Despite these seemingly critical shortcomings, however, Prime Minister Koizumi and his administration have maintained a high approval rate from the public.

The Legislative Record: The Japan National Diet in 2003 (pp361-363)
JUNKO HIROSE (National Diet Library, Japan)
The performance of the Japanese Diet in 2003 indicates that a new political era may have begun. The rate at which government sponsored bills were passed in 2003 was 11 per cent higher than in 2002. The unity of government parties, especially the unified support of the Komei Party, the high approval rates of Koizumi Cabinet, and changes in the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ), the largest opposition party, all contributed to this high passage rate. Most notable was a change in the treatment of national security issues. The confrontational style of the 1955 regime gave way to a new political era of discussion and compromise through the Diet deliberation. The Koizumi cabinet demonstrated strong leadership over the government parties, and the cabinet made many substantial policy decisions.

Japanese Journal of Political Science (2003), Cambridge University Press
Copyright ©2003 Cambridge University Press

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