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Co-Heads of Programme:

Odd Arne Westad|,Barry Buzan|


Programme Coordinator:

Jie (Cherry) Yu|

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East Asia Programme

The LSE IDEAS East Asia International Affairs Programme studies the relationships between the three countries in the region (China, Japan and Korea) and between the region and the main outside powers.

East Asia is one of the most dynamic and consequential regions in world politics. It is home to the second and third largest economies in the world in Japan and China. Within the region, China has become the engine of global growth for the past two decades, representing a major shift in the balance of economic power, the global consequences of which remain uncertain. Yet East Asia’s recent dynamism was preceded during the last international system, the Cold War, by intense competition and conflict among its states, spurred by the involvement of outside powers, and the region is still home to the last remaining Cold War conflicts, in Korea and Taiwan.

The East Asia International Affairs Programme seeks to discuss the changing nature of East Asia’s international affairs through an engagement with academics, practitioners, and representatives from business and organisations within the region and elsewhere. We are particularly interested in the historical development of East Asia’s international affairs and what it can tell us about the future, in analysing the links between the domestic and foreign affairs of the region’s countries and in looking at the interaction between different aspects of international affairs in the region: Trade and technology, security and military strategy, and culture and ‘soft power’, among others.

To promote this discussion, the Programme brings together interested parties through its many research associates and visiting fellows, its inter-disciplinary conferences and workshops and through the provision of an electronic network within the IDEAS website. The Programme also hosts an advanced training programme in international affairs for Chinese diplomats, supported by the British Foreign Office and the Chevening Foundation and assists with the development of LSE IDEAS’s Masters Degree in International Affairs (with Peking University’s School of Internatonal Studies).


  • Trade and Environment: Is the EU a lame duck in front of China?
    LSE IDEAS Visiting Fellow Dr Valeria Zanier and Ms Yu Jie, also from IDEAS, will be holding an enlightening discussion which will shed some light on the dynamics of present EU-China relations. 6th May, 16.30 - 18.00, Clement House (CLM) Room 7.02. This is an event organised by the LSESU European Society.
  • Prof Arne Westad Writes for LA Times on China and ASEAN
    Director of LSE IDEAS and Head of IDEAS East Asia International Affairs Programme, Prof Arne Westad argues that "China, for its part, needs to rein in a self-centered and sometimes confrontational foreign policy, which is unlikely to succeed. Without a continuous, forward-looking process of negotiations, the ASEAN-China relationship will go nowhere."
  • Will China Dominate the 21st Century?
    IDEAS East Asia programme proudly hosted three renowned China experts as well as one of the most distinguished Chinese diplomats for the final lecture of IDEAS Asia Rising Public Lecture Series, please follow the event link for lecture podcast of 18th March 2014

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