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  • 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: Anna Magnusson, Morten B. Pedersen
  • Publication Date: 11-2012
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: International Peace Institute
  • Abstract: The UN Secretary-General's good offices on Myanmar, now in their twentieth year, have been one of the longest such diplomatic efforts in the history of the world organization. The mandate derives from the General Assembly, which since 1993 has been requesting “the assistance of the Secretary-General” in implementing its annual resolutions on the situation of human rights in Myanmar. Since a special rapporteur was already in place at that time, Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali defined his role as one of “good offices” rather than fact-finding, a decision that has remained unchallenged.1 An informal 1994 framework agreement with the Myanmar government listed three broad categories of subjects for dialogue: (1) return to democracy, including the 1990 election, the National Convention, and the situation of Aung San Suu Kyi and other political leaders; (2) reintegration of the ethnic minorities into the political life of Myanmar; and (3) human rights and humanitarian issues.Yet, in practice, three successive secretaries-general and their special envoys have focused on the first of these, a return to democracy—and in particular, on mediating between the military government and Aung San Suu Kyi, the leader of the democratic opposition.
  • Topic: International Relations, Security, Human Rights, International Trade and Finance, United Nations
  • Political Geography: Israel, Southeast Asia, Myanmar
  • 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: Erik Beukel
  • Publication Date: 01-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Danish Institute for International Studies
  • Abstract: The South China Sea is subject to competing claims of sovereignty by the littoral states. Due to the number of claimants and the complexity of claims, it is called the “mother of all territorial disputes”. China is far the biggest country in the region and claims sovereignty over almost all the South China Sea. This Working Paper elaborates the claims and considers the implications for China's neighborhood relations and the alignments in the Asia-Pacific. The focus is on two faces of power in China's policy, military power and soft power, after China's seizure of Mischief Reef in 1995 that upset its neighbors. China attaches great weight to developing good neighborhood relations and has become an advocate of soft power. However, when it concerns the South China Sea the soft power approach is combined with a continuing use of military power to strengthen its position. It is concluded that the two faces of power present China with new unwieldy challenges.
  • Topic: International Relations, Territorial Disputes
  • Political Geography: China, Israel, Southeast Asia
  • Author: Daniel Lemus Delgado
  • Publication Date: 08-2010
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: CONfines de Relaciones Internacionales y Ciencia Política
  • Abstract: El presente artículo analiza la ceremonia de inauguración de los XXIX Juegos Olímpicos de Beijing y el desfile conmemorativo del 60 Aniversario del establecimiento de la República Popular China. Estos eventos son parte de la estrategia del gobierno comunista para construir la imagen de una "Gran China". Este análisis parte de un enfoque constructivista de las Relaciones Internacionales. Por lo tanto, se asume que las identidades colectivas son importantes, porque contribuyen a moldear las estructuras materiales del escenario internacional. Así, estos eventos mediáticos fortalecen la identidad colectiva del pueblo chino y con ello, la posibilidad de que el Estado chino tenga cada día un rol más importante en la arena mundial.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Communism, Mass Media
  • Political Geography: China, Israel, Asia
  • Author: Donald K. Emmerson
  • Publication Date: 02-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Asia-Pacific Research Center
  • Abstract: No crisis is uniformly global. The suffering and the opportunity that a “global” crisis entails are always unevenly distributed across countries, and unevenly across the population inside any one country. That said, one can nevertheless argue that we—not the old royal “we” but, more presumptuously, the new global “we”—are in January 2009 experiencing the latest of four dramatic changes that major parts of the world have undergone over the last twenty years. In 1989, of course, the Berlin Wall was breached, ending the Cold War, followed by the implosion of Lenin's Soviet dystopia two years later. Nor did the 1989 massacre of proreform demonstrators in Tiananmen Square revive a command economy in China. Instead it kept the polity shut so that Deng's economy could continue to open.
  • Topic: International Relations, Globalization, International Political Economy
  • Political Geography: United States, China, America, Israel, Asia, Berlin
  • Author: Brad W. Setser, Arpana Pandey
  • Publication Date: 01-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Council on Foreign Relations
  • Abstract: China reported $1.95 trillion in foreign exchange reserves at the end of 2008. This is by far the largest stockpile of foreign exchange in the world: China holds roughly two times more reserves than Japan, and four times more than either Russia or Saudi Arabia. Moreover, China's true foreign port- folio exceeds its disclosed foreign exchange reserves. At the end of December, the State Administration of Foreign Exchange (SAFE)—part of the People's Bank of China (PBoC) managed close to $2.1 trillion: $1.95 trillion in formal reserves and between $108 and $158 billion in “other foreign assets.” China's state banks and the China Investment Corporation (CIC), China's sovereign wealth fund, together manage another $250 billion or so. This puts China's total holdings of foreign assets at over $2.3 trillion. That is over 50 percent of China's gross domestic product (GDP), or roughly $2,000 per Chinese inhabitant.
  • Topic: International Relations, Debt, Economics, Emerging Markets, International Trade and Finance
  • Political Geography: Russia, United States, China, Israel, Asia, Saudi Arabia
  • Author: Rami G. Khouri
  • Publication Date: 02-2009
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Center for Contemporary Arab Studies
  • Abstract: With its army and its diplomatic posture, the American administration is now deeply part of the Middle East. Many of the problems of the region have been clearly aggravated, and in some cases sparked, by American policy, though many of them are a joint venture between Arabs and is, between Tirrks and Iranians, and between Europeans of different nationalities. But because the United States is such a decisive player in the Middle East, it has inordinate power to affect things in the region for good or for bad.
  • Topic: International Relations, Foreign Policy, Islam
  • Political Geography: United States, America, Europe, Middle East, Israel, Arabia
  • Author: Dirk Nabers
  • Publication Date: 02-2008
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: German Institute of Global and Area Studies
  • Abstract: The leadership of powerful states in processes of regional institutionalization is a significant, though still widely ignored topic in the field of International Relations (IR). This study asks about the theoretical conditions of effective leadership in international institution- building, using China's and Japan's roles in East Asian regionalism as an empirical test case. It addresses the question of what actually happens when states perform the role of leader. Specifically, it focuses on the process of negotiating leadership claims, and different hypotheses are presented as to the requirements of effective leadership in international affairs. The findings point to the fact that leadership is effective and sustainable when foreign elites acknowledge the leader's vision of international order and internalize it as their own. Leadership roles are often disputed and are constituted of shared ideas about self, other, and the world, relying on the intersubjective internalization of ideas, norms, and identities.
  • Topic: International Relations, International Organization, Politics
  • Political Geography: Israel, East Asia