The project investigates the security dynamics of the Asia-Pacific region. It focuses on the rapid evolutions that are occurring in regional alignments by comparatively analyzing the main components of the existing ‘security architecture'. This security architecture comprises of three major formations: (1) the US alliance network, (2) the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN) and (3) the Russian-Chinese led Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO). Each of these organizations is rapidly evolving to meet the post-9/11 security environment and to effectively provide security for the region and the states involved.
The project utilizes a number of conceptual perspectives to analyse and assess these security organizations. The theories employed are drawn from the discipline of International Relations and include: (A) ‘intra-alliance politics', (B) ‘security communities' and (C) ‘strategic partnerships'. The first of these perspectives was developed in my doctoral dissertation on alliances and has been published in the Journal of Strategic Studies, the second is an idea developed in the 1950s to explain NATO, and the last has yet to be fully elaborated at present. I envisage drawing upon concepts used in Business Studies to create a new perspective on ‘strategic partnerships' that can be used to explain the Shanghai Cooperation Organization. The project seeks to increase our understanding of these crucial organizations by offering an innovative and insightful conceptual analysis.
Method & Output
I aim to produce a single-authored book manuscript over the period 2007-8. The source material will be drawn from an admixture of primary and secondary sources. Given both the conceptual and contemporaneous nature of the subject matter I aim to conduct interviews or discussions with some of the key policy-making and academic personnel that form part of the relevant epistemic community in the Asia-Pacific region.