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  • Author: Sven Bernhard Gareis
  • Publication Date: 04-2013
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: George C. Marshall European Center for Security Studies
  • Abstract: The People's Republic of China has long been a very visible actor in international politics. With 1.4 billion inhabitants, it is the most populous country in the world, with a land mass of 9.6 million square kilometers bordering 14 states in East, South, and Central Asia. China has a long Pacific coastline, along which it claims vast areas of the South China Sea. A nuclear power since 1964, the People's Republic of China has the largest armed forces in the world, numbering approximately 2.3 million soldiers. China has been a permanent member of the UN Security Council since 1971; for many years, it has figured prominently in all decision making processes with global impact.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Economics, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: China, Central Asia
  • Author: Nele Noesselt
  • Publication Date: 03-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: German Institute of Global and Area Studies
  • Abstract: Research on Chinese International Relations (IR) theory has produced a variety of discourses, including post-positivist analyses, contributions by area specialists and China watchers, and articles by Chinese IR scholars. These strands, however, hardly overlap or communicate with each other. To close the gap between “the self-reflection of the core” (“Western” IR) (Waever/Tickner 2009: 3) and “the periphery's revolt against [“Western”] IR” paradigms (ibid.), it is necessary to view China (and other non-“Western” regions) as more than simply a playground for theory testing. This paper thus goes beyond the metatheoretical debate about the possibility of non-“Western” IR. It argues that even though the IR debates in China are heavily influenced by the trends of “Western” IR Studies, the claim regarding the establishment of a “Chinese school of IR” is not a hollow slogan. Indigenous frameworks are already under construction.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Diplomacy, Political Theory
  • Political Geography: China, Israel
  • Author: KUIK Cheng-Chwee
  • Publication Date: 07-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: Malaysia's China policy in the post-Cold War era – as an instance of a smaller state's strategy toward a proximate and rising great power – has been characterized by three patterns. First, there was a shift from hostility and guarded rapprochement during the Cold War to cordiality and maturing partnership in the post-Cold War era. Second, despite the overall positive development, Malaysia's China policy has remained, in essence, a hedging approach that is driven by both a pragmatic desire to maximize benefits from a closer relationship with the neighboring giant and a contingent calculation to guard against any long-term strategic risks in the uncertain regional environment. Third, such a two-pronged approach, which took shape since the 1990s under Mahathir Mohamad, has endured beyond the Mahathir era. Indeed, under his successors Abdullah Ahmad Badawi and Najib Tun Razak, Malaysia has continued to pursue a policy of dualism vis-à-vis China. What explains the enduring continuity of the hedging approach in Malaysia's China policy? This paper adopts a neoclassical realist perspective, arguing that the continuity is attributed to both structural and domestic factors. Domestically, the changing bases of political legitimation in the multi-ethnic country, which highlight the increasing salience of economic performance and political inclusiveness as key sources of moral authority to the UMNO-led coalition government, have necessitated the succeeding leaders to continue pursuing a pragmatic policy aimed at ensuring a stable and productive relationship with China, not least to gain from the steadily growing bilateral trade and the giant's growing outward investment. Structurally, Malaysia's position as a smaller state has compelled it to be constantly vigilant about the uncertainty of state intentions and inter-great power relations, which in turn demands it adopts contingent measures to hedge against longer-term risks. It is such structural and domestic determinants that have fundamentally shaped the country's policy towards China in general and the South China Sea issue in particular, which characteristically bears the mark of a delicate dualism, i.e. an explicit preference for engaging China through bilateral and multilateral diplomacy, but one that is backed by a low-key practice of maintaining and strengthening its traditional military links with its Western security partners.
  • Topic: International Relations, Security, Cold War, Diplomacy, International Trade and Finance, Bilateral Relations
  • Political Geography: China, Malaysia, Israel
  • Author: Alex Evans, David Steven
  • Publication Date: 04-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center on International Cooperation
  • Abstract: This paper provides an overview of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and their expected status in 2012; describes the background to, and options for, a post-2015 framework; and discusses how governments can best navigate the political challenges of agreeing to a new set of development goals.
  • Topic: International Relations, Development, Foreign Aid, Foreign Direct Investment
  • Political Geography: China
  • Author: Dmitri V. Trenin
  • Publication Date: 02-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Abstract: This report compares Russian and Chinese security perceptions and explains how they shape the two countries' policies towards each other. It argues that the modern relationship between the two countries, formed in the late 19th and 20th centuries, was turned on its head at the start of the 21st century. China has now become a powerful factor affecting a whole range of Russian policies, both domestic and foreign. The paper also argues that, while Russia is not central to China's foreign relations, and non-existent in China's domestic politics, good relations with Moscow are an important supporting element in Beijing's overall strategy of reclaiming China's 'rightful place in the world'. It concludes that while both countries need each other and would benefit from a stable political relationship and close economic ties, both Moscow and Beijing lack the long-term strategies to create such a bond.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Bilateral Relations
  • Political Geography: Russia, China, Asia
  • Author: James Boutilier
  • Publication Date: 12-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: NATO Defense College
  • Abstract: NATO is at a crossroads. This is not the first time that Brussels has been faced with critical decisions about the direction, character and raison d'être of this unique and remarkable organization. But this time the stakes are even higher. The major centers of global power are all weak simultaneously for individual and inter-connected reasons. The greatest power on earth and NATO's banker, the United States, is confronting almost insurmountable levels of debt and talk about the end of the American empire has become commonplace. The European community is reeling from the cumulative effect of debt crises. And China, the 21st century's "workshop of the world" (and in the eyes of some a potential savor of ailing economies in Europe) has begun to see its economy slow disturbingly. At the same time, two other phenomena are unfolding; the rapid and profound shift in the global centre of economic gravity from the Euro-Atlantic to the Indo-Pacific region and the winding down of NATO's involvement in Afghanistan. The latter, of course, raises the inevitable question: "What next?" The former raises a related question: "Does NATO's future lie in Asia?"
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, NATO, Hegemony
  • Political Geography: Afghanistan, China, Europe, Asia
  • Author: Andreas Bøje Forsby
  • Publication Date: 12-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: What are the implications of China's rapid rise for international order? This report seeks to answer the question from an identity perspective. The key argument is that China is currently undergoing an identity shift towards Sino-centrism, that is, a self-centering tendency to turn narrative attention towards the internally generated, specifically Chinese hallmarks associated with China's civilizational past and cultural heritage.
  • Topic: International Relations, Security, Foreign Policy, Culture
  • Political Geography: China, Israel
  • Author: Nele Noesselt
  • Publication Date: 04-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: German Institute of Global and Area Studies
  • Abstract: With the beginning of the post-Maoist era, the focus of Chinese foreign policy shifted from ideology and revolution to pragmatism and reform. Chinese scholars in the field of International Relations (IR) are now encouraged to develop abstract scientific analyses of China's international environment. This requires not only the handling of IR theories and methods of foreign policy analysis (FPA), but also a sound knowledge of the organizational structures and policy principles of other states.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Financial Crisis
  • Political Geography: China, Europe
  • Author: Daniel P. Erikson
  • Publication Date: 04-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for International Governance Innovation
  • Abstract: The presidency of Barack Obama ushered in a welcome honeymoon period in US-Latin American relations following eight years of the Bush administration's polarizing policies towards the region. Early optimism has been tempered by the reappearance of tensions in hemispheric relations. They include the rise of Brazil as a regional power, the role of Venezuela and the continued strain in US-Cuban relations. Regional relations are further complicated by China's growing economic presence in Latin America, increased ties with Iran and Russia, different US and Latin reactions to the June 2009 coup in Honduras, and the crisis response to the January 2010 earthquake in Haiti. Still, the US has potential to advance a strategy of substantive, issue oriented engagement designed to rekindle the early goodwill that resulted from Obama's election to the White House.
  • Topic: International Relations, Diplomacy
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States, China, Latin America, Haiti
  • Author: Hakan Altinay
  • Publication Date: 04-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: The Brookings Institution
  • Abstract: Worldwide, there has been a recent increase in expressions of cynicism. We are reminded that all power is hard power, and that being loved or respected is no substitute for being feared. The great power game of nations always continues, we are forewarned, even when a higher goal or rhetoric is evoked. Superpowers are selfish, arbitrary, and dangerous nations, and they should not be embarrassed to be so and not feel constrained by international legitimacy and laws. We are cautioned against assuming that the rise of the world's emerging powers is doing anything to the status of United States as the sole superpower. Naturally, it would be a folly to think that global public opinion is in effect a “second superpower,” or even a crucial factor. Such concerns are the Lilliputians binding an unsuspecting Gulliver. Anyone harboring naïve views needs to be told that good intentions are at best a distraction and a nuisance, and at worst a recipe for disaster, given their imprudence. Cynics prefer to be unconcerned about the achievements of transnational normative action, such as abolishing the slave trade or establishing the International Criminal Court.
  • Topic: International Relations, Emerging Markets, Governance
  • Political Geography: Russia, China, India, Brazil