S-Space Graduate School of International Studies (국제대학원) Dept. of International Studies (국제학과) Theses (Master's Degree_국제학과)
Inconsistent correlation between national and regional identities: Examination of double identity at individual and country levels in Korea and Japan
- 국제대학원 국제학과
- Issue Date
- 서울대학교 국제대학원
- 학위논문 (석사)-- 서울대학교 국제대학원 : 국제학과(국제협력전공), 2015. 8. 박철희.
- Due to the Asian Financial Crisis in 1998 and the Global Financial Crisis in 2008, East Asian countries realized the importance of cooperation with other nations. In 21st century, nation-states are no longer capable enough to decide important issues independently and they are required to pay more attention to multinational cooperation such as regional cooperation. Therefore, numerous academic and political attempts to examine opportunities for effective and practical regional cooperation in East Asia have existed since the late1990s.
However, while several pioneering endeavors to enhance regional cooperation stagnating due to rivalry and historical issues, some scholars point out that the lack of regional identity has prevented East Asian countries from building a feasible and sustainable framework for regional cooperation. They argue that the stagnating growth of the regional identity is an outcome of strong national identities in this region. However, these arguments have rarely been supported by any empirical evidence or concrete examples. Moreover, the previous studies have limitations as they completely preclude that the correlation between national and regional identities can be inconsistent at different levels.
In order to evaluate the correlation between national and regional identities in East Asian countries with verifiable data, this paper examines 2003 and 2008 social surveys developed by the ISSP and the EASS. To investigate the correlation between national and regional identities in Korea and Japan, this paper designed a regression model with carefully selected 8 independent variables and 1 dependent variable.
The most consistent and meaningful outcome of this quantitative research model is that the previous assumption on the negative correlation between national and regional identities is completely refuted. Respondents who have stronger national identity consistently tend to feel closer to East Asia in both countries. It means the sense of belonging to their own countries doesnt restrict the sense of belonging to their region. Rather, the individual respondents with stronger national identity tend to have stronger regional identity and the sense of closeness to the region.
In contrast, when we integrate all the individual samples into two groups representing both countries, the correlations between national and regional identities in both countries are not identical. The increase or decrease of national identity at country level is not directly related to the rise or fall of regional identity. There is an inconsistent correlation between national and regional identities in Korea and Japan depending on at which level it is investigated.
To find out the reason why the inconsistency exists between individual level and country level, this paper focuses on the concept of national strategic identity which can be formulated and redefined by political leaders. This paper argue that this is the factor which produces the inconsistency in the correlations between individual level identity and country level identity during the research period.