Japans Emerging Role in Promoting Regional Integration in East Asia: Towards an East Asian Integration Regime (EAIR)

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Park, Chang-Gun

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Institute of International Affairs, Graduate School of International Studies, Seoul National University
Journal of International and Area Studies, Vol.13 No.1, pp. 53-72
JapanLeadershipEast AsiaRegional IntegrationInstitutionalised CollaborationEast Asian Integration Regime
This paper is a theoretically grounded empirical contribution aimed at shedding light on Japans leadership role in promoting regional integration in East Asia. It questions the viability of institutionalised regional collaboration and offers a framework of regional-integrationist approaches to the formation of an East Asian Integration Regime (EAIR). A key finding of this paper is that Japans regional projects are directly linked to the promotion of an effective regional integration regime in East Asia. Since the advent of the East Asian crisis in 1997-8, Japans regional policies have promoted a particular form of institutionalised regional collaboration, which has acted as an impetus for promoting a regional integration regime in East Asia. This is illustrated by the lifecycle of regime development, which involves a three-stage process of EAIR formation: 1) emergence; 2) evolution; and 3) institutionalisation. In trying to identify the importance of functional-institutional efficiency in the formation of an EAIR, this paper provides a relatively detailed chronological account of the three analytical frameworks: 1) the emergence of the East Asian Economic Caucus (EAEC); 2) the establishment of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) + 3 (China, Japan and South Korea) Summit; and 3) the institutionalisation of ASEAN + 3.
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Graduate School of International Studies (국제대학원)Dept. of International Studies (국제학과)Journal of International and Area Studies (JIAS)Journal of International and Area Studies vol.13 (2006)
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