Workshop: Dimensions of Sino-Japanese Rivalry in a Global Context

Jun 22, 2017

This one-day workshop will be a follow-up workshop to the workshop “Globalizing Rivalry? Sino-Japanese Interaction in a Global Context”, which took place on November 12, 2015 in Berlin. The the paper presented will analyze the evolving notion of Sino-Japanese rivalry and its effects on concrete foreign policy measures of both states in a global context. Theoretically referring to research on interstate rivalry, papers will conceptualize and contest the notion of rivalry between Japan and China, particularly focusing on Sino-Japanese interaction in different world regions and on the level of international institution building. Ever since China's emergence to great power status and Japan’s attempts to ‘normalize’ its foreign relations since the early 1990s, both countries increased their political engagement on the global level and in world regions beyond the boundaries of East Asia. As a result there has been increasing mutual monitoring of and increasing concerns about the intentions and actions of the respective other on these different levels of world politics. However, since established political patterns and instruments that define Sino-Japanese interaction in East Asia are not transferable to other regions, Japan and China need to redefine their strategies and policies not only toward the other actors in the respective regions but also toward each other.

The paper break new ground by addressing Sino-Japanese rivalry in the context of the AIIB, as well as in different regional contexts, particularly in Central Asia, Africa, and the Middle East. Theoretically, they will define different dimensions and categories of rivalry, such as external perspectives on rivalry, asymmetric rivalry, imagined or socially-constructed rivalry, and rivalry about sets of norms to find answers to the questions: Is there a Sino-Japanese rivalry in the first place? If there is, which factors define this rivalry? Are there different levels and/or kinds of rivalry? Which factors influence Sino-Japanese rivalry in different regions and on different levels of the international system? Do these factors differ across regional and institutional boundaries?

By identifying the mechanisms and concrete foreign policy measures of Japan’s and China’s increasing engagement in those world regions and global institutions, this special issue will contribute to the literature of Sino-Japanese relations – moving the focus beyond their political interaction in their immediate neighborhood. It will also contribute to the literature on interstate rivalry by challenging common understandings of the concept of rivalry and by adding new facets and interpretation of rivalry based on the concrete empirical cases.

This workshop is organized by Dr. Kai Schulze (Freie Universität Berlin)

Time & Location

Jun 22, 2017