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Home > Books & Journals > Journal Abstracts Last Updated: 14:23 03/09/2007
Journal Abstracts #186: February 18, 2005

International Relations of the Asia-Pacific

Journal Name: International Relations of the Asia-Pacific:
August 2004, Vol. 4, No. 2

Print ISSN: 1470-482X, Online ISSN: 1470-4838


Can't get no satisfaction? The recognition of revisionist states (pp 207-238)
Steve Chan (Department of Political Science, Campus Box 333, University of Colorado, Boulder, CO 80309, USA.)
Attributions of satisfaction or dissatisfaction to states form an important foundation of theories about international relations, especially with respect to the outbreak of war among major powers. This paper addresses several conceptual and empirical problems in the application of these attributions. It first offers a critique of the conventional denotation of states as putatively satisfied or dissatisfied. It then presents the multiple connotations that this distinction has been associated with. This is followed by the suggestion of an alternative indicator, based on the extent of a state's participation in international governmental organizations (IGOs), for assessing and tracking national satisfaction/dissatisfaction. The paper then proceeds to a discussion of prior studies of the power-transition theory, and presents a serial reading of national satisfaction/dissatisfaction on the part of the main contenders for international leadership from 1860 to 1949. Given its central role in the wars among these contenders, Germany's scores are the subject of special scrutiny. The proposed measure of satisfaction/dissatisfaction, when combined with the occurrence of power shifts as determined by prior research, shows a strong association with the timing of past wars between major powers. The conclusion discusses some further theoretical and policy implications of the perspective presented.

Asia-Pacific regionalism and preferential trade agreements: the Australian case (pp239-264)
Nick Bisley (School of Social and International Studies, Deakin University, 221 Burwood Highway, Burwood, VIC 3125, Australia.)
Since the late 1990s, many developed states and customs territories have been seeking out preferential trade deals. This article examines this trend, which has been especially evident in the Asia-Pacific, and focuses specifically on Australia as a leading exponent of preferentialism in the region. The article has two distinct aims. First, to shed light on the thinking behind Australia's foreign economic policy and, specifically, to examine the motivations for moving away from multilateral and non-discriminatory means of advancing its free trade agenda in the region. Second, it aims to examine the developing dynamics of regional economic co-operation in the Asia-Pacific given the stasis of existing institutional efforts. This paper begins with a brief examination of the regional context and Australia's approach to trade policy. It then considers the nature of Australia's preferential bilateralism and its aims and motivations. The article shows that Australian policy-makers believe that preferential agreements can provide trade creation through market access, as well as broader benefits which derive from market expansion. Australia is motivated to pursue preferentialism by concern about existing institutions, by the technical appeal of bilateral agreements, and by the broader trend toward preferentialism in the international system, as well as shifts in its own domestic politics. The paper concludes with a short examination of the character of regionalism in the Asia-Pacific in the light of burgeoning regional bilateralism.

Japan, Australia and the United States: little NATO or shadow alliance? (pp265-285)
Purnendra Jain and John Bruni (Centre for Asian Studies, University of Adelaide, Australia.)
In a rapidly changing geopolitical and strategic environment in which the current US administration is willing to demonstrate to the world that the pursuit of its national interest will not be encumbered by multilateral forums, what role will US bilateral alliance partners such as Japan and Australia play in redefining the international order, especially in their area of primary interest – East Asia? This paper examines an Australian proposal for establishing an informal security dialogue at the ministerial level comprising the United States and two of its bilateral allies in the Asia-Pacific. While the dialogue process has begun, the success of any such structure, however, will be largely coloured by accommodating the very different histories and strategic cultures that have developed within these countries, and the very different expectations other regional states have of them. Through the examples of the war on terror and the war against Iraq, this paper argues that there is little evidence of structured co-operation at the ministerial level in place. Further, any exclusive high-level security dialogue which forms around this troika will incur the suspicion of many East Asian nations, as it may be seen as a platform for unrestrained US unilateralism and exceptionalism, which may in turn have negative implications for Japan and Australia's continuing role in Asia.

Rediscovering Asianness: the role of institutional discourses in APEC, 1989–1997 (pp287-317)
Toru Oga (Nakamachi 1-25-16, Meguro-Ku, Tokyo 153-0065, Japan.)
Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) emerged as the largest regional body in history and gave rise to two institutional discourses: open regionalism and Asian values. Open regionalism entailed the articulation of a non-discriminatory and inclusive regionalism. While endorsing the idea of an Asia-Pacific community, APEC has suffered as a result of clashes between two of its core constituencies, its Asian and Anglo-Saxon members. In reality, APEC had lost its articulatory role by the mid-1990s; no significant agreements have been concluded since the Osaka summit of 1995. However, Asian values have emerged as a vehicle for the advocacy of Asian identity, instead of the open regionalism of APEC. This paper, then, focuses primarily on these two institutional discourses and explores the evolution of APEC; how discourses on ‘Asianness’ have been articulated as an alternative to the idea of an Asia-Pacific identity.

International Relations of the Asia-Pacific (2004)
Copyright ©2004 Oxford University Press and the Japan Association of International Relations

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