Saturday, April 4, 2015

Latest Faculty publications, 2014-15

Dolla, Varaprasad S. (2014), Science and Technology in Contemporary China, London: Cambridge University Press.

The Science and Technology policy changes in post-Mao China cannot be complete without a historical narrative and analysis of Science and Technology in its pre-policy (prior to 1850) and policy (since 1850 when the Qing rulers began to promote Science and Technology ) periods. This book is an imperative to revisit and interrogate the nature and scope of Chinese Science and Technology policy and progress. The text is divided into three parts. The first part considers both the macro and micro issues pertaining to Science and Technology policy in general and also of the policiy in particular. The second part highlights the historical narrative of Chinese Science and Technology policy as it has a key role in the evolution of contemporary Science and Technology architecture. The third part discusses three focal components of the Chinese Science and Technology system each representing state, society and international systems - the organizational structure representing the state; the research system representing society; and technology acquisition representing the international system with serious implications for China.

Uttam, Jitendra (2014), The Political Economy of Korea: Transition, Transformation and Turnaround, London: Palgrave Macmillan. 

Korea's twin transitions – agrarian to industrial and industrial to post-industrial – effectively transformed the country's political economy. Moving away from the traditional focus on aspects such as market, state and world systems, culture, and colonialism, the author argues that Korea's so-called 'second state' was revitalized through the 'people's movement' and the more recent 'citizens movement'. The 'second state' provided incremental pressure to subvert the agrarian equilibrium of a previous era dominated by the Yangban aristocracy as well as the industrial equilibrium enforced by large business conglomerates. This book is an attempt to acknowledge the sacrifices made by the Korean people to enlarge the basis of Korean capitalism, bringing the wider society into its framework.

Roy Choudhury, Srabani (ed.) (2014), Japan-SAARC Partnership: A Way Ahead, New Delhi: Pentagon Press.

From Pentagon Press:
Despite a tremulous start, SAARC member countries have plodded ahead tentatively but diligently to overcome differences and achieve meaningful progress towards its objective of creating an environment of cooperation and cordiality among the member nations. With an upsurge in regionalism and with focus of international interest shifting to the Asian region, major world powers are seeking to use the platform of SAARC to enhance their relationship with the countries of the region. Consequently many of them have gained Observers status in SAARC and many others are aspiring to it. Strategically placed between the South East Asia and West Asia, some of the SAARC nations have become critical for energy security as Sea Lines of Communication weave around them. The current changes in the international arena and the progress made by other regional entities has further provided positive impetus to each of the member states of SAARC to appreciate the significance of the organization and to reap benefits from it collectively as well as bilaterally.
This volume, the product of an international conference held on ``Japan-SAARC Partnership: A Way Ahead`` by the Centre for East Asian Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University and Sasakawa Peace Foundation is an attempt to look at Japan`s relation with SAARC nations from various dimensions- regionalism, politics, security, economics and use of soft power. Enriched by contribution from Japanese and Indian scholars along with scholars from Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Nepal, it brings in multi-dimensional perspectives in form of eighteen chapters, which would appeal to the specialist of international relations.

Horimoto, Takenori and Lalima Verma (eds.) (2013), India-Japan Relations in Emerging Asia, New Delhi: Manohar Books.

This volume attempts to critically assess India-Japan relations in the context of the rapidly changing regional environment. India and Japan are set to make this bilateral relation as one of the most important in the future. Though expanding economic relations is important it is the strengthening of the strategic relations which has increasingly assumed greater importance since the beginning of the twenty-first century. East Asia, economically is one of the most dynamic regions in the world, hence, most major powers are interested in the developments here. Maritime security, rise of China are some of the main concerns not only for the two countries but also for the United States of America which has enormous stakes in this region. Managing relations with China and dealing with the rising stature of China in the region is a cause of concern for both India and Japan. There are several persistent problems between Japan and China which at any point of time can create a crisis situation in the region. There are also irritants and problems in the relations between India and China which often pose obstruction to the development of stable relations. By maintaining strong bilateral relations the main objective of both India and Japan is to maintain a balance of power in the region and prevent any one country from becoming too dominant. The volume consists of twelve essays. The first eight examine India-Japan relations in the context of rising China. The status of Japanese studies in India and the nature of the economic relations are dealt with in the following essays.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Welcome to SEASofJNU!

This blog is under new management! We hope to make this blog even better than it was! Please be patient with us as we work hard to bring you new food for thought. 

Friday, September 12, 2014

Asahi apologizes for erroneous Fukushima, comfort women reports

September 12, 2014, TOKYO —
The publisher of one of Japan’s leading newspapers apologized to readers Thursday for several serious errors in its reporting, retracting an article that claimed workers abandoned their posts during the Fukushima nuclear disaster.
Asahi’s publisher Tadakazu Kimura, speaking at a hastily arranged news conference on Thursday night, made the apology after a confidential government document cited in the daily’s report was finally released to the public with no mention of a mutiny by plant workers.
“I offer profound apologies to our readers and people at Tokyo Electric Power Co (TEPCO),” the 60-year-old publisher said.
He said he would decide whether or not to resign after enacting “revival through sweeping reform.”
The article, published on May 20, said 90% of workers at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant had left the complex, disobeying the plant chief’s order to stay put in the worst nuclear accident since Chernobyl in 1986.
TEPCO operates the plant. A massive earthquake and tsunami crippled its cooling systems and sent reactors into meltdown in March 2011.
The daily said about 650 employees, or 90% of the plant’s workforce, retreated to another seaside TEPCO nuclear plant (Fukushima Daini) 12 kilometers away when the nuclear crisis worsened a few days after the accident.
The official document released Thursday recounted the testimony of plant chief Masao Yoshida to a government investigative panel, with no trace of staff “disobeying Mr Yoshida’s order” as Asahi had claimed. Yoshida died of cancer in July last year.
Other dailies which also had access to the then confidential statement had already cast doubt on the article.
In the same news conference, Kimura also admitted a highly contentious report published 32 years ago on the topic of Japan’s wartime sexual enslavement of Korean women was also false.
That report cited a Japanese writer who claimed to have witnessed the kidnapping of women on the South Korean island of Jeju for the purposes of sex slavery, which has since been discredited by independent research by rival newspapers and academics.
Asahi admitted in early August that its 1982 article on the comfort women and follow-up reports were based on a “false” statement by the witness, but Kimura’s apology was the publication’s first in relation to it.
“I apologize to readers for publishing the erroneous articles and being too late in making the correction,” he said.
The admission of the mistake has boosted the country’s conservative forces, which have insisted there was no “sex slavery” at the frontline brothels and that many of the comfort women were highly paid prostitutes.
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe told a radio talk show Thursday the comfort women report had “agonised many people and impaired Japan’s reputation in the international community.”
With few official records available, researchers have estimated up to 200,000 women, many from Korea but also from China, Indonesia, the Philippines and Taiwan, served Japanese soldiers in “comfort stations”.
Source: Japan Today

Japan Inc cautious on India despite Abe-Modi love-in

11 September, 2014, TOKYO —
Even as the friendship between Shinzo Abe and Narendra Modi blossomed during the new Indian leader’s first foreign trip, Japan Inc refused to get misty-eyed, wary of the pitfalls of doing business on the sub-continent.
A five-day tour that began with a bear hug and a day of sightseeing in Kyoto worked itself up through a crescendo of mutual compliments that culminated in Tokyo’s pledge to spend $34 billion in India over the next five years.
Companies love the idea of India, with its huge untapped market and its vast, cheap workforce. But they know there are potential problems; Japanese suitors have stumbled more than once before.
“India’s very weak infrastructure adds to the cost of making and moving things there,” said Takashi Kodama, head of Asian economic research at Daiwa Institute of Research.
“Unless you resolve that, the current hopes for India that the world has cannot spark an investment boom,” he said.
On top of dodgy roads, ramshackle railways and other weak infrastructure, there are complex local customs for multinational firms looking for somewhere other than China to set up shop.
Unexpected taxes and economic policy changes in India have also discouraged investors, who want lower costs, high growth and predictability.
Despite its broadly comparable population, India is home to just over 1,000 Japanese firms, about five percent of the total operating in China.
To be sure, Japanese businesses agree that India has enormous potential as the populous democracy enjoys steady growth, an expanding middle class and modernisation that is boosting demand for infrastructure, such as trains, sewerage and electricity.
Japanese firms can also use India as a hub to export to regions west of the Indian Ocean, such as Africa and the Middle East.
Economic liberal Modi knows this and was in Tokyo to pitch for investment.
“Businesses and industries need stability and a growth environment. India has become a country that provides both,” Modi told businesses in Japan last week on his first tour since coming to power.
“Tell me what you need for the business environment. India will deliver it,” he said.
A string of Japanese firms have recently committed to fresh Indian investments, including major electronics parts maker Nidec, which has decided to spend roughly $1 billion in India in the next seven to eight years.
But there have been costly failures, among them pharmaceutical maker Daiichi Sankyo’s $4.6 billion purchase of Indian giant Ranbaxy in 2008.
That went sour when US regulators banned imports of its drugs over quality concerns, dealing a huge blow to Daiichi Sankyo’s bottom line and leading to a cut-price sale of the unit.
Fellow drugmaker Eisai launched a production and research hub in a special economic zone with tax incentives in 2009.
But India changed its policy and slapped an alternative tax on the company in 2011, said Sayoko Sasaki, Eisai corporate officer.
“It is a big market with a lot of opportunities. But when it comes to tax rules, it has to be predictable,” she told AFP. “We hope India’s investment environment will continue to improve.”
Among winners in India, small-car specialist Suzuki Motors has prospered there for three decades, having entered the market well before the nation became a hot prospect, mostly serving domestic motorists.
But even Suzuki has suffered from bouts of labor unrest, including a 2012 riot that resulted in the death of a personnel manager in India.
For India’s part, Japan is a less complicated partner than other nearby countries that have the cash it needs for investment, say analysts.
“India wants money for infrastructure. It can ask China, which is eager and willing to give but might also try to use it as an opportunity to exert its political influence,” said Kodama of Daiwa Institute of Research.
“By comparison, Japanese money would come with fewer strings attached,” he said.
Abe’s financial targets affirm Japan and India’s commitment to their partnership, said Shotaro Kumagai, economist at Japan Research Institute.
“I would say India regards both China and Japan as important partners, rather than comparing and trying to pick one or the other,” he said.
But the world is waiting to see whether Modi can turn his nation’s good prospects into reality, Kodama said.
“If Modi delivers on his promises and buoys the economy, maybe more investors will move in,” he said.
“There are lot of hopes for India. But they are only hopes. We are yet to see concrete policies.”
Source: Japan Today

Xi's India visit to strengthen ties

BEIJING, Sept. 9 -- Chinese President Xi Jinping's visit to India and other South Asian countries will push forward bilateral relations, a senior diplomat said on Tuesday.
Invited by Maldives President Abdulla Yameen, Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa and Indian President Pranab Mukherjee, Xi will pay state visits to the Maldives, Sri Lanka and India later this month.
Xi's visit to the three countries will have significant and profound effects, Assistant Foreign Minister Liu Jianchao said at a press conference.
During his India tour, Xi will meet with Mukherjee, hold talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and meet other Indian leaders. Xi will give a speech in New Delhi on China-India relations and China's South Asia policy and make extensive contacts with Indian people from all walks of life.
As the two biggest developing countries and emerging economies, both China and India are committed to economic development and improving the lives of their people. They stand for a new international order that is more just and equitable.
The development of China and India are each other's opportunity and peaceful, cooperative and inclusive development will not only benefit the two peoples but Asia and the world. The two countries have kept up boundary negotiations and ensured the peace and stability of the border area.
Xi's visit to the Maldives, Sri Lanka and India will push forward the construction of the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road, said Liu.
The president's South Asia tour will also set up a framework for China-South Asia cooperation in the future and promote common development and prosperity, he said.

Editor:Liang Jun、Bianji

The West should not criticize Sino-Russia energy cooperation

September 11, 2014: China and Russia have started to build a joint natural gas pipeline in accordance with the terms of a natural gas supply contract signed between the two countries in May. Chinese Vice Premier Zhang Gaoli and Russian President Vladimir Putin attended the opening ceremony.
The two countries signed a series of 30-year agreements on natural gas projects such as a USD 400 billion contract for Russia to supply 38 billion cubic meters of natural gas to China from 2018.
China will start to build the Chinese sector of the pipeline in the first half of 2015. China and Russia are working to promote bilateral cooperation.
However, both the Financial Times and The International New York Times have offered the view that China has emerged as a "winner" from the Ukraine crisis.
According to The International New York Times, Bobo Lo, a specialist in Chinese and Russian foreign policy, is claiming that while the United States and European Union have imposed economic sanctions on Russia over its interventions in eastern Ukraine, China has stood apart and sought to gain concrete advantages.
Such complaints from western countries are groundless.
Fundamentally, cooperation between China and Russia is not a matter of expediency but of mutual benefit. Russia is abundant with energy, especially in East Siberia and the Far East. Meanwhile, China is a big energy consumer. Natural gas imports are increasing year by year. China is increasingly reliant on foreign countries for energy. Therefore, China and Russia are complementary in respect of energy cooperation.
Cooperation between China and Russia is beneficial to the development of East Siberia and the Far East and can promote infrastructure in Russia including roads, substations and power stations. Furthermore, Russia can diversify its energy exports.
 Therefore, Russia will not sacrifice its economic interests for support in the Ukraine conflict.
This round of cooperation is based on a long period of negotiations. China and Russia have signed numerous agreements including bilateral cooperation, routes, and pricing of natural gas.
Western countries have no grounds to criticize China. China has long been opposed to solving disputes via sanctions. “It is imperative for all to cease fire, stay calm and promote political settlement of the Ukraine crisis by making use of current communication and coordination mechanisms,” says Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Qin Gang.
Western countries cannot interfere with China-Russia cooperation since this cooperation is comprehensive, strategic, stable and permanent.

The article is edited and translated from《中俄能源合作升级水到渠成(望海楼)》, source: People's Daily Overseas Edition, author: Su Xiaohui, Deputy Director of Department for International and Strategic Studies, China Institute of International Studies 
Editor:Yuan Can、Huang Jin

“Rich” China still needs foreign investment

September 11, 2014.
In the past 20 years, foreign owned companies have made a great contribution to China’s social progress and have become an integral part of China’s economy. Although China has enjoyed rapid development and a wealth of capital, it will never stop trying to attract foreign capital and it will never turn its back on foreign companies. China’s policy of investment and cooperation will not change, said Wang Yang, deputy Prime Minster of China’s State Council.
The basic policy of attracting foreign capital has not changed.
With China’s GDP ranking 2nd in the world, its companies are becoming more competitive. The pattern of attracting foreign investment inwards and encouraging domestic companies to go abroad is shifting, but China’s basic policy of attracting foreign capital has never changed. To date it has attracted 1.5 trillion dollars in foreign direct investment, topping the developing world for 22 years. In 2013 it attracted 124 billion dollars and ranked 2nd in the world. At the same time, foreign-owned companies have also gained great benefits in China - 85% of foreign-owned enterprises are making profits and 90% are willing to expand their investment in China.“Money” is not only the focus in terms of attracting foreign capital.
Foreign capital has two functions in reform and opening-up. Foreign capital helps China to become the world’s largest trader, manufacturer and exporter, and plays a role in helping China to integrate into the world.
 However, in the process of attracting the foreign capital China has not significantly improved its technology and scientific research level. Wang Yang noted that it is important to introduce advanced technology, sophisticated management techniqes, and intellectual resources. To set up an economic system consistent with international rules plays a key role in upgrading China’s economy.
Creating a fair investment environment is the key.
Creating a fair investment environment is an increasingly important means of attracting foreign capital. A fair competitive environment is more attractive to foreign companies than preferential policies. As a result, China will make its market more open to outside investors and supranational privilege will be eliminated in attracting foreign capital. Private, state-owned and foreign enterprises should be treated equally.
The article is edited and translated from《引进先进技术经验 借鉴成熟市场做法》, source: People's Daily Overseas Edition, author: Zhou Xiaoyuan

Editor:张媛、Huang Jin

China calls for respect of sovereignty as U.S. widens airstrikes in Iraq, Syria

BEIJING, Sept. 11 -- Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Hua Chunying on Thursday called for respect of the sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of the countries concerned as U.S. President Barack Obama vowed to stage a sweeping airstrike campaign in both Iraq and Syria.
In response to a question about Obama's announcement to make "a steady, relentless effort" to root out the Islamic State extremists in Iraq, Hua said the international law should be respected in the international fight against terrorism.
"We hold that in the international struggle against terrorism, the international law should be respected, as well as the sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of the countries concerned," Hua said.
The U.S. President announced in a speech on Wednesday night local time they will lead an expanded global coalition to address the threat of terrorism. Obama authorized U.S. airstrikes inside Syria for the first time and vowed to send another 475 U.S. troops into Iraq.
The U.S. military has so far conducted about 150 airstrikes on Islamic State targets inside Iraq.
Hua said China firmly opposes any form of terrorism. She said the international community should jointly fight against terrorism and support the effort that the related countries made to maintain internal security and stability.
Hua said at present, the international fight against terrorism is in a grim and complex situation. Since the rise of international terrorism has yet to be stemmed,chronic disturbance in certain regions has provided opportunities for activities by international terrorist forces, Hua said.
 She said these factors have brought about new threats to international security and stability and new challenges to the international fight against terrorism.
"We hope that under joint effort of the international community, the countries concerned would resume order and stability as soon as possible and realize reconciliation, peace and development," Hua said, adding that this will help eliminate the rise of terrorism in the places and realize sustainable peace and stability in the region.
Hua said China is ready to abide by the principle of mutual respect, equality and cooperation to strengthen anti-terrorist cooperation with the rest of the international community and maintain global peace and stability.

 Editor:Sun Zhao、Yao Chun
Source: People's Daily

Chinese, Russian presidents meet ahead of SCO summit

DUSHANBE, Sept. 11 -- Chinese President Xi Jinping and his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, met here Thursday ahead of the 14th summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO).
It is the fourth meeting between the two leaders so far this year. Xi held talks with Putin in February before the Sochi Winter Olympic Games, and then in May during the fourth summit of the Conference on Interaction and Confidence Building Measures in Asia in Shanghai.
The two presidents met again in July in Brazil ahead of a summit of the emerging-market bloc of BRICS, which groups Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.
Xi has held talks or met with Putin for nine times since he assumed the office of Chinese presidency in March 2013, which testifies to the high level and distinctiveness of China-Russia relations.
Both Xi and Putin will attend the 14th summit of the SCO slated for Thursday and Friday in the Tajik capital.
Editor:Sun Zhao、Yao Chun
Source: People'sDaily

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Japan, U.S. discussing offensive military capability for Tokyo

10th September, 2014, Tokyo - Japan and the United States are exploring the possibility of Tokyo acquiring offensive weapons that would allow Japan to project power far beyond its borders, Japanese officials said, a move that would likely infuriate China.
While Japan’s intensifying rivalry with China dominates the headlines, Tokyo’s focus would be the ability to take out North Korean missile bases, said three Japanese officials involved in the process.
They said Tokyo was holding the informal, previously undisclosed talks with Washington about capabilities that would mark an enhancement of military might for a country that has not fired a shot in anger since its defeat in World War Two.
The talks on what Japan regards as a “strike capability” are preliminary and do not cover specific hardware at this stage, the Japanese officials told Reuters.
Defense experts say an offensive capability would require a change in Japan’s purely defensive military doctrine, which could open the door to billions of dollars worth of offensive missile systems and other hardware. These could take various forms, such as submarine-fired cruise missiles similar to the U.S. Tomahawk.
U.S. officials said there were no formal discussions on the matter but did not rule out the possibility that informal contacts on the issue had taken place. One U.S. official said Japan had approached American officials informally last year about the matter.
Japan’s military is already robust but is constrained by a pacifist Constitution. The Self Defense Forces have dozens of naval surface ships, 16 submarines and three helicopter carriers, with more vessels under construction. Japan is also buying 42 advanced F-35 stealth fighter jets.
Reshaping the military into a more assertive force is a core policy of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. He has reversed a decade of military spending cuts, ended a ban on Japanese troops fighting abroad and eased curbs on arms exports.
Tokyo had dropped a request to discuss offensive capabilities during high-profile talks on revising guidelines for the U.S.-Japan security alliance which are expected to be finished by year-end, the Japanese officials said. Instead, the sensitive issue was “being discussed on a separate track”, said one official with direct knowledge of the matter.
But any deal with Washington is years away and the obstacles are significant - from the costs to the heavily indebted Japanese government to concerns about ties with Asian neighbors such as China and sensitivities within the alliance itself.
The Japanese officials said their U.S. counterparts were cautious to the idea, partly because it could outrage China, which accuses Abe of reviving wartime militarism.
The officials declined to be identified because they were not authorised to discuss the closed-door deliberations. A Japanese Defense Ministry spokesman said he could not comment on negotiations with Washington.
Japan would need U.S. backing for any shift in military doctrine because it would change the framework of the alliance, often described as America supplying the “sword” of forward-based troops and nuclear deterrence while Japan holds the defensive “shield”.
Washington did not have a position on upgrading Japan’s offensive capabilities, “in part because the Japanese have not developed a specific concept or come to us with a specific request”, said another U.S. official.
“We’re not there yet - and they’re not there yet,” the official said. “We’re prepared to have that conversation when they’re ready.”
North Korea lies less than 600 km (370 miles) from Japan at the closest point.
Pyongyang, which regularly fires short-range rockets into the sea separating the Koreas from Japan, has improved its ballistic missile capabilities and conducted three nuclear weapons tests, its most recent in February 2013.
In April, North Korea said that in the event of war on the Korean Peninsula, Japan would be “consumed in nuclear flames”.
Part of Japan’s motivation for upgrading its capabilities is a nagging suspicion that the United States, with some 28,000 troops in South Korea as well as 38,000 in Japan, might hesitate to attack the North in a crisis, Japanese experts said.
U.S. forces might hold off in some situations, such as if South Korea wanted to prevent an escalation, said Narushige Michishita, a national security adviser to the Japanese government from 2004-2006.
“We might want to maintain some kind of limited strike capability in order to be able to initiate a strike, so that we can tell the Americans, ‘unless you do the job for us, we will have to do it on our own,’” said Michishita, a security expert at the National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies in Tokyo.
Reflecting Japan’s concerns, Abe told parliament in May 2013 that it was vital “not to give the mistaken impression that the American sword would not be used” in an emergency.
“At this moment is it really acceptable for Japan to have to plead with the U.S. to attack a missile threatening to attack Japan?” Abe said.
Under current security guidelines, in the event of a ballistic missile attack, “U.S. forces will provide Japan with necessary intelligence and consider, as necessary, the use of forces providing additional strike power”.
The informal discussions on offensive capabilities cover all options, from Japan continuing to rely completely on Washington to getting the full panoply of weaponry itself.
Japan would like to reach a conclusion in about five years, and then start acquiring hardware, one Japanese official said.
Tokyo had wanted the discussions included in the review of the Japan-U.S. Defense Cooperation Guidelines that are expected to cover areas such as logistical support and cybersecurity. Those talks, which formally kicked off last October, are the first in 17 years.
But the United States was keen to keep discussions on offensive capabilities separate to avoid riling China and South Korea, another Japanese official said. Beijing and Seoul each have territorial disputes with Tokyo and accuse Abe of failing to atone for Japan’s wartime aggression.
Reflecting the sensitivities of the issue even in Japan, any talk of an upgraded offensive capability is shrouded in euphemism.
Itsunori Onodera, who stepped down last week as defense minister in a broad cabinet reshuffle, a year ago described it as “the capability to attack enemies’ military bases and strategic bases for the sake of self-defense”.
Defense guidelines compiled by the government in December watered this down to a “potential form of response capability to address the means of ballistic-missile launches and related facilities”.
Written by: Nobuhiro Kubo
Source: Japan Today