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  • Author: Steve Chan
  • Publication Date: 11-2019
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for Non-Traditional Security Studies (NTS)
  • Abstract: This short essay introduces some concepts and propositions from social science research that I personally find helpful in understanding the ongoing Sino-American trade dispute. Naturally, they are not meant to suggest a comprehensive or exhaustive list of factors that inform this topic. Given the purpose and the limits of my essay, I also do not engage any specific theory or method, such as the efficient-market hypothesis or game theory pioneered by well-known Nobel laureates (e.g., Burton Malkiel and Eugene Fama1; Thomas Schelling2).
  • Topic: Conflict, Trade, Economic Cooperation
  • Political Geography: United States, China, Asia-Pacific
  • Author: Pradumna B. Rana, Xianbai Ji, Wai-Mun Chia, Chang Tai Li
  • Publication Date: 03-2018
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for Non-Traditional Security Studies (NTS)
  • Abstract: The withdrawal of the United States from the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and Trump’s “America First” agenda have ignited a second round of interest in mega-free trade agreements in the Asia Pacific region. Countries have been motivated to explore alternative trade policy options. Using national real gross domestic output gains estimated by the GTAP model to construct “preference ordering” for 10 Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) members and their six regional dialogue partners, this paper comes up with several findings. First, when multilateral agreements are not possible, countries are better off with a narrower regional trading agreement than without one. Second, in the region, Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) has higher beneficial impacts than the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP). Third, for dual-track countries, that is countries that are negotiating both the CPTPP and the RCEP, implementing both agreements is better than each separately. Fourth, as expected, economic impacts of the CPPTP are lower than those of the original TPP12, but all CPPTP members will benefit although to different degrees. Fifth, economic impacts of open regionalism are higher than those of a closed and reciprocal one. Going forward, the paper argues that ASEAN countries and their regional dialogue partners need to adopt a “multi-track, multi- stage” approach to trade policy.
  • Topic: Regional Cooperation, Trans-Pacific Partnership, Free Trade, Economic Cooperation
  • Political Geography: United States, China, Asia, Asia-Pacific
  • Author: Naoko Kumada
  • Publication Date: 05-2018
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for Non-Traditional Security Studies (NTS)
  • Abstract: This paper offers an understanding of the scope, nature, and context of constitutional change being proposed in Japan today, in internal terms rather than through external reconstruction. Rather than being a mere reaction to “external circumstances”, as portrayed by its apologists and by “realist/rational-reconstructionist” analysis, the movement to amend and replace the Constitution is a project with a history, underpinned by a worldview and driven by an ideology that provide it with its own momentum. The most overlooked aspect of the movement is religion. From the Meiji Restoration until the end of the War, Japan was governed through a religio-political system based on a newly invented State Shintoism. The scope and intent of today’s movement to amend/replace the Constitution cannot be understood without this background in mind. Failure to account for the ideological, cultural, historical, and indeed the constitutional dimensions of the issue seriously underplays the stakes for Japan and its neighbours. The constitutional movement is part of a multi-generational project to restore what its leaders declare to be the “true shape of Japan”, with the pre-war religious ideology and constitutional form that they deem to have been unjustly replaced by the US occupation administration after Japan’s defeat.
  • Topic: Imperialism, Reform, Constitution, Domestic politics
  • Political Geography: United States, Japan, Asia, Asia-Pacific
  • Author: Evan A. Laksmana
  • Publication Date: 04-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for Non-Traditional Security Studies (NTS)
  • Abstract: This paper seeks to explore and assess the implications of climate insecurities for the armed forces of the Asia-Pacific region, and in particular Southeast Asia. It identifies key issues and trends related to climate insecurities – in the areas of mass migration, diseases, natural disasters and the scarcity of water, food and other resources. It then details the implications for armed forces in the region with reference to the strategic, institutional and operational realms, and contends that climate change will become both a burden multiplier and a threat multiplier in the decades to come.
  • Topic: Climate Change, Health, Migration
  • Political Geography: Southeast Asia, Asia-Pacific
  • Author: Lorraine Elliott
  • Publication Date: 05-2011
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for Non-Traditional Security Studies (NTS)
  • Abstract: The global food crisis of 2007 to 2008 – which was characterised by both volatility in food prices and shortages of food – and the uneven but almost certainly largely negative impacts of climate change have drawn attention to the importance of food security as a regional challenge for the Asia-Pacific. Food insecurity in the region results from the convergence of uncertainties about inputs to food production and economic conditions that facilitate or restrict access to food. Regional strategies to achieve food security need to recognise the need to provide immediate remedial support to alleviate hunger and restore livelihoods, to enhance capacity to anticipate food uncertainties and to strengthen resilience to the impacts of future food disasters. A human security approach seeks to ensure that people are at the centre of regional food security frameworks – not just in terms of concerns over who the food insecure or food vulnerable are, but also in terms of ensuring that policies and programmes respond to local needs and community rights and that food security governance is participatory and transparent.
  • Topic: Security, Economics, Globalization
  • Political Geography: Asia-Pacific