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Research

  1. Grand Design for Northeast Asia—Phase 3
  2. Project to Advance Economic Integration in East Asia
  3. Confidence Building in the East Asian Sea
  4. Regional Responses to the Spread of HIV/AIDS in East Asia
  5. Normalizing the North Korean System
  6. Forming a Northeast Asian Community Based on Soft Power
  7. Engaging the United States in an Emerging East Asia Community
  8. United States Programme
  9. Building Six-Party Capacity for a WMD-Free Korea
  10. New Northeast Asia Cooperation Dialogue (NEACD) Study Project
  11. Economics and Politics of East Asian Co-operation and China's Role in the Process: Opportunities and Challenges

1. Grand Design for Northeast Asia—Phase 3

National Institute for Research Advancement (NIRA), Japan

April 2005-March 2006

Description: The Grand design project is intended to have a total duration of 5 years. This particular project will build on the findings of the first two phases and conduct research in collaboration with research institutes in China, Korea and domestically in Japan. In the first year of this third phase, researchers will 1) examine each country's development program—the current situation and related issues—and the potential problems associated with aligning those programs with the grand design in an effort to create a road map for achieving regional interdependence in Northeast Asia; 2) determine which of five fields—energy/ environment, transport/ distribution/ communication, strategic development clusters, eco-tourism, development finance—should be given preference for implementation and develop pilot program proposals around those fields.

Web site: http://www.nira.go.jp, http://www.nira.go.jp/newse/niranews/200506/200506.html#4

2. Project to Advance Economic Integration in East Asia

Australia-Japan Research Centre (AJRC), Australian National University; Ministry of Finance, Japan; Department of Treasury, Australia and other institutions around Asia

Description: Three years. Following on from a first phase which advanced practical understanding of issues related to policy dialogue and surveillance, financial cooperation and exchange rate management in Asia, this project examines issues in a wider framework. This project examines the policy dialogue on the issue of East Asian economic integration, the instruments and institutions needed to support financial cooperation, and possible common currency arrangements in the region. The new research work also looks at regulation and trade and includes the following themes: regulation of e-commerce, regulatory reform in telecommunications, private investment, liberalization of air transport, policy harmonization and regional trade in financial services, and treatment of agricultural products in free trade agreements.

Related events: Twice yearly policy research workshops.

Output: Establishment of an East Asian Bureau of Economic Research (EABER) to link and coordinate cooperation between universities and think tanks involved in the project.

Contact/ Web site: Tel: +61-2-6125-3780, email: ajrc@anu.edu.au; http://apseg.anu.edu.au/research_units/ajrc/index.php

3. Confidence Building in the East Asian Sea

National Institute for Research Advancement (NIRA), Japan

June 2005-March 2006

Description: First phase of a planned three year project. In the research field of Regional Cooperation in East Asia. In light of the progress of regional integration as exemplified by the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and the European Union (EU), it is time for the nations in East Asia to implement substantial regional integration and establish the framework necessary for its implementation. In order to achieve this goal, it is important to shift from the conventional perspective that is land-oriented. A perspective oriented on the East Asian Sea focusing on its history is essential given that the East Asian Sea is shared in common by the nations of the region. The necessity and feasibility of building confidence in the region will be explored focusing on the sea shared by the nations, together with measures that will contribute to building confidence. This project will provide a venue for discussions, in which specialists in the field will participate, in pursuit of these objectives.

In this first phase, socio-economic data will be collected from the nations of the region which will then be analyzed from a macro-economic perspective concentrating on comparative advantage and mutual complementarity. In addition, micro-data quantitative analyses will be developed using the results of existing opinion polls such as the Asian barometer. Also a descriptive analyses will be carried out using the textbooks of each nation. The target areas of the research include Japan, China, South Korea, major ASEAN nations and the Oceania nations.

Web site: http://www.nira.go.jp

4. Regional Responses to the Spread of HIV/AIDS in East Asia

Friends of the Global Fund, Japan (FGFJ) and Japan Center for International Exchange (JCIE)

Description: Commenced February 2005. In order to lay the groundwork for joint regional policy responses and actions in East Asia, the FGFJ is conducting comparative research on national-level and regional responses to the spread of HIV/AIDS in East Asia. This project seeks to advance general understanding of the challenges of communicable diseases and develop a regional network of leaders from diverse sectors who actively seek common solutions. Participants in this project—12 researchers and practitioners from around the region—have been commissioned to write papers on the nature of the epidemic in their country, as well as responses to it by the government, business and civil society actors.

Related events:

  • Tokyo, June 29, 2005: One-day workshop to exchange ideas and find commonalties and differences in experiences around the region
  • Tokyo, June 30, 2005: Commemorative Symposium on the Fifth Anniversary of the Okinawa Summit: The East Asian Regional Response To HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis, And Malaria. Researchers presented their papers which kicked off discussion on broader regional responses to the three major communicable diseases.
  • Planned dissemination seminars in a few venues throughout East Asia once the book is published

Output: Final papers will be published both in English and Japanese. The title of the forthcoming publication is "Fighting a Rising Tide: The Response to AIDS in East Asia", and it is expected to be available in spring 2006.

Web site: http://www.jcie.or.jp/fgfj/e/

5. Normalizing the North Korean System

Institute for International Policy Studies (IIPS), Japan; China Reform Forum (China Institute for Reform and Development); POSCO Research Institute (POSRI), Korea National Defense University; and the Institute of World Economy and International Relations (IMEMO), Russian Academy of Sciences; Rand Corporation, USA.

Description: Commenced June 2005. The five institutes have banded together to search for ways in the medium to long term for North Korea to become a player in East Asian regional economy and a normalized nation cooperating peacefully in the world sphere, rather than being a security threat. They will also research the role of North Korea and other third parties in advancing that country's normalization. They plan to hold several workshops and to release a report during 2006.

Related events:

  • Santa Monica, USA, June 13-14, 2005: Normalizing the North Korean System—First Workshop.
  • Moscow, October: Second workshop.

6. Forming a Northeast Asian Community Based on Soft Power

Ritsumeikan Univeristy, Kyoto, Japan

Description: The purpose of the research is to develop a community of peace and prosperity in the East Asian region utilizing soft power such as economic cooperation, diplomacy, and cultural influences. The construction of a Northeast Asian Community relies on multidisciplinary cooperation through domestic and international research networks, while integrating the social sciences of economics, political science, and international relations with the science and technology fields. To accomplish their goal, the research team is studying each country's individual security and integration policies, as well as focusing on the role of each country's citizen solidarity movements. In addition, the research team is interested in United States Northeast Asian security policy and the possibility of a Northeast Asian Nuclear Free Zone, and is examining the peace agreement provisions that resulted from the Northeast Asian Regional Forum as well as a common security system for arms reduction and crisis management. Making use of international economics theories and the technology field to research energy resources as well as the possibility of technical cooperation with information industries is also an important part of the research process. The researchers carry out their work in collaboration with a network of partner organizations in China, Japan, Korea, UK and U.S.

Web site: http://www.ritsumei.ac.jp/eng/newsletter/spring2005/2feature1-1.shtml

7. Engaging the United States in an Emerging East Asia Community

Japan Center for International Exchange (JCIE), East-West Center, USA, and the United States Asia Pacific Council (USAPC)

Description: Commenced January 2005. Growing economic integration and political cooperation among countries in East Asia have increasingly been associated with aspirations to build an East Asia regional community, and it is crucial that the United States and East Asia remain constructively engaged in a dialogue about the community-building process. This study and dialogue project involves prominent experts from East Asia and the United States and looks into the political, security and economic dimensions of U.S. engagement in the East Asian community. It also tries to reveal future challenges in terms of engaging the U.S. in the East Asian community building process.

Related events:

  • Tokyo, February 25-26, 2005: Engaging the United States in an Emerging East Asia Community
  • Washington, D.C., October 24, 2005: Workshop between project participants
  • Washington, D.C., October 25, 2005: USAPC Washington Conference on "New Challenges in the Transpacific Partnership"—project participants to present their arguments to the public

Web site: http://www.jcie.or.jp/ http://www.usapc.org

8. United States Programme

Institute of Defence and Strategic Studies (IDSS), Singapore

Description: The U.S. Programme presently emphasizes the foreign policy and overseas strategic and military policies of the U.S., particularly the direct and indirect impacts they have on East Asia. The flagship project under the program is a three-stage investigation of U.S.-Southeast Asian strategic relations. Over the next three years, other projects in the U.S. Programme include studies of American power and hegemony after September 11, 2001; U.S. anti-terrorism policy in Southeast Asia; and the U.S.-Japan-China triangle.

Related events:

  • Singapore, February 24-25, 2005: Workshop bringing together specialists from Southeast Asian countries to discuss their perceptions and expectations of the U.S. and China in regional security.
  • Singapore, August 22-24, 2005: Conference co-organized with the National Bureau for Asian Research on U.S. and Southeast Asian responses to China.

Output: "Betwixt and Between: Southeast Asian Strategic Relations with the U.S. and China" by Dr. Evelyn Goh—monograph and a journal article comparing the role of the U.S. in the regional security strategies of selected Southeast Asian countries. (See publications section below for details.)

Web site: http://www.idss.edu.sg/research/Country_Studies.html

9. Building Six-Party Capacity for a WMD-Free Korea

Institute of Foreign Policy Analysis (IFPA)

Description: Three-year project (October 1, 2004, to September 30, 2007) that builds upon the process of regional policy coordination regarding the North Korean weapons of mass destruction (WMD) challenge. This project builds upon an earlier IFPA study (2001-2004, also supported by the Carnegie Corporation), which made important contributions to the development of a more cohesive and comprehensive regional approach for negotiating a WMD-free Korea. The project's primary focus is to prepare for what will likely be a more complex six-party mechanism, which must try to address such issues as security assurances, support for DPRK economic reform experiments, safeguards implementation, and nuclear verification in the context of two Korean governments and a rising China. A key objective of the proposed project, therefore, is to help prepare and equip the six-party process with the tools it needs to play a constructive role as a guarantor of regional security, a monitor of compliance with non-proliferation rules, a provider of assistance to North Korea, and an overall facilitator of a WMD-free and unified Korean Peninsula. In the process, the project also expects to contribute to the coordination of regional strategies for dealing with the immediate problem of a growing North Korean nuclear arsenal.

Related events:

  • Moderated multilateral workshops and working group meetings with expanded Chinese, Russian and Australian participation, while sustaining high-level U.S., Japanese, and South Korean participation, and seek eventual North Korean involvement
  • Three workshops (in Shanghai [March 16-17, 2005], Honolulu, and Seoul), building in opportunities for smaller working groups and breakout sessions on such crucial issues as the nature of an acceptable security assurance and the design of a feasible and effective verification regime for North Korea.

Output:

  • Early warning packages to top policy makers. To assist U.S. government officials on major Korean security issues with a particular focus on WMD developments, the project will provide "early warning packages" to senior members of the White House, the State Department, the Defense Department, and other relevant U.S. agencies.
  • Policy-oriented workshop reports: summary report that will integrate and synthesize the findings and analysis derived from the meetings. IFPA will implement a targeted dissemination strategy that will focus on all the relevant policy making communities in the United States, in the other six-party countries, and in other key countries and international organizations (such as Australia, the IAEA and similar agencies, and the EU).
  • Monograph: The project will culminate with a policy report that integrates and synthesizes independent research and analysis by IFPA's research staff, the findings and recommendations from the three workshops, and original work produced by IFPA's consultants.

Funding: Carnegie Corporation of New York

Contact/ Web site: Dr. Charles M. Perry, email: cperry@ifpa.org, http://www.ifpa.org/projects/carnrok.htm

10. New Northeast Asia Cooperation Dialogue (NEACD) Study Project

Institute on Global Conflict and Cooperation (IGCC)

Description: The project runs until May 31, 2006. A study project to assess the contributions and limitations of Asian track-two diplomacy after a decade of experiments. The assessment will look at the interaction of the Northeast Asia Cooperation Dialogue (NEACD) with the official six-party talks over the proposed two-year period. It will also examine the ten years of NEACD experience with track-two diplomacy and that of other track-two dialogues in Asia

Premise: Since (NEACD)'s founding in 1993, its strategic goal has been to create an institutional mechanism for dialogue and communication in order to minimize tension and build cooperation in the Northeast Asia region. The NEACD is a unique multilateral forum involving policy-level foreign ministry officials, defense ministry officials, military officers, and academics from China, Russia, North and South Korea, Japan, and the U.S., has proven its value as the only ongoing channel of communication among the six governments in the region. NEACD keeps vital lines of communication open in Northeast Asia by providing regularly scheduled meetings in an informal setting, allowing participants to candidly discuss issues of regional security and cooperation. Since 1993, NEACD has held fifteen sessions, rotating hosting duties among the participating countries.

Funding: Carnegie Corporation of New York, $325,000

Contact/ Web site: http://www-igcc.ucsd.edu/, http://www.wiredforpeace.org/about.php

11. Economics and Politics of East Asian Co-operation and China's Role in the Process: Opportunities and Challenges

European Institute for Asian Studies (EIAS) and Nomisma, Italy

Description: This study will serve to reassess Europe's strategic interests in East Asia. Mid to long term challenges and opportunities for EU policy will be underlined. The main objective of the study is to identify Europe's strategic interests in East Asia, and to provide information on the region's likely development in economic, political, security and socio-cultural terms, with a special focus on intra-regional co-operation and in particular China's role. In particular the study aims to: 1) Analyze the current factual situation in the region, and in particular China, including relations with major global powers like the USA, Russia, India and the EU; 2) Identify long-term shaping factors that affect/determine co-operation within East Asia and with the EU; 3) Undertake a strategic analysis of the major world players in the region; 4) Examine the existing EU policies and strategies towards the region and China; 5) Analyze the challenges posed by the major powers in the region (Russia, China, USA, India); and 6) Elaborate alternative scenarios, new options and recommendations for EU policies.

Using a multi-disciplinary approach, a team of 15 experts from Europe, East Asia and the United States will work for six months on tackling all issues with respect to the study. Interviews with officials, policy-makers and experts from research institutions, academia and civil society, are being carried out in situ across Europe, East Asia and the United States (more than 100 expert interviews in over 16 countries).

Premise: The relationship between the European Union (EU) and East Asian states and China has evolved in the past decade with both continents undergoing major economic, political and social changes. With China leading the region's fast economic growth and with political collaboration within the region intensifying, East Asian cooperation has major economic, political and security implications for the world, generating both opportunities and challenges for the EU.

Related events: Brussels, June 16-17, 2005: Brainstorming Workshop.

Output: On the basis of the interviews being conducted within the framework of the study and the brainstorming workshop discussions, a set of recommendations will be presented to the EU Commission on July 22, 2005.

Funding: Research has been commissioned by the European Commission.

Web site: http://www.eias.org/research/euasia/euasia.html, http://www.eias.org/research/esiaproject.html