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  • Author: Philomena Murray
  • Publication Date: 05-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Politics
  • Institution: Palgrave Macmillan
  • Abstract: In comparative regional integration (RI) analysis, the European Union's (EU) advancing of its own experience as a model is a significant problem. This article explores this problem by focusing on comparative aspects of RI in the EU and East Asia. It argues that there are important and valid aspects of comparison, such as the origins and objectives of these two regions, but fewer points of comparison between the two when it comes to achieving their objectives. It suggests that historical differences between the two regions constitute the major reason that a direct comparison is neither useful nor productive. It analyses the centrality and the exceptionalism of the EU in much of the comparative RI literature. It agues that the promotion of the EU experience as a form of model or paradigm is far from analytically helpful – the method of comparative analysis needs be the focus of our study as much as the objects of comparison. The article examines how the centrality of the EU in some analysis can amount to a form of de facto snobbery in the positioning of the EU on a rather unsteady pedestal. This 'integration snobbery' – to coin a phrase utilized by an EU official – is not constructive for comparative analysis of the EU and East Asia.
  • Political Geography: Europe, East Asia
  • Author: Lay Hwee Yeo
  • Publication Date: 05-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Politics
  • Institution: Palgrave Macmillan
  • Abstract: For much of the second half of the twentieth century, regionalism has been conceptualized with reference to Europe. The European Union (EU) is seen as the most successful example of regional integration and this 'model' is largely based on an exclusive 'institutional' regionalism where integration is achieved through endowing specific institutions with far-reaching decision-making powers to shape the behaviour of the member states. In contrast, the East Asian region-building process seems to operate on a different logic, with an emphasis on open-ended networked regionalism. This article sketches out the process of regional construction in Europe and East Asia and attempts to develop and contextualize the idea of networked regionalism in order to assess how useful it can be in explaining the trajectory and contours of region-building in East Asia.
  • Political Geography: Europe, East Asia, Asia
  • Author: Cesar de Prado
  • Publication Date: 05-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Politics
  • Institution: Palgrave Macmillan
  • Abstract: This article argues that multidimensional regional processes have an external projection that may be explained by their semi-liberal governance structures. It analyses the European Union (EU) and the East Asian grouping of countries, focussing on the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and the active participation of Japan, South Korea and the People's Republic of China within ASEAN Plus Three. Both regional processes have a multi-level external projection as seen in their links with key states (especially the United States), other regional processes, and global regimes like the UN and the G20. In both cases, one finds that public actors have to collaborate with private actors, although they do so in a restricted fashion and often using think tanks and elite public-private intellectual (track-2) actors. The comparative analysis concludes with some hypotheses regarding the consolidation of regional processes in the world.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, United Nations
  • Political Geography: Russia, China, Taiwan, East Asia, South Korea, Southeast Asia
  • Author: Hee-Yul Chai
  • Publication Date: 05-2010
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Politics
  • Institution: Palgrave Macmillan
  • Abstract: In recent years, there has been considerable scholarly and policy community attention accorded to comparisons between the EU's monetary integration and attempts to create monetary integration in East Asia. This article examines these attempts in comparative perspective, focusing in particular on the challenges of monetary integration in Asia. After explaining recent development of financial and monetary cooperation initiatives in East Asia, such as Post-Chiang Mai Initiative and the attempt to introduce a Regional Currency Unit (RCU), this article illustrates why it is preferable for East Asia, in its attempt to pursue monetary integration, to follow a path similar to the European experience, rather than to follow alternative paths such as a parallel currency approach or a harmonized inflation targeting. That RCU could in the future be issued by the so-called 'Asian Exchange Rate Stabilization Fund' (AERSF). The AERSF would assure the stability of regional currencies taken as a whole vis-à-vis third currencies, and between themselves as well, and as such, pave the way for full monetary integration in Asia. Comparisons with Europe are explored and implications for European and Asian regionalism are examined.
  • Political Geography: Europe, East Asia, Asia