[Essay] NoA-SRC International Symposium “There Goes the Neighborhood: Increasing Tensions in Cooperative Northeast Asia” was held in Kokura, Kitakyushu-City on December 17-18, 2016

The international symposium “There Goes the Neighborhood: Increasing Tensions   in  Cooperative Northeast Asia” was held on December 17-18, 2016 at the Kitakyushu International  Conference Center (Kitakyushu City, Kokura). This conference is the second event this year hosted by  NoA-SRC. The two-day symposium started off with opening remarks by Mr. Naoto Takagi, Chief  Director of the Kyushu Economic Research Center (Public Interest Incorporated Foundation), which  celebrated its 70th anniversary this year. The keynote speech, “International Relations Theory in East  Asia,” was delivered by Professor Yong-Chool Ha (University of Washington), who for many years has  been making great contributions to the academic field of Northeast Asian community building. In his  lecture, Professor Ha discussed what kind of intellectual infrastructure exists in the region and  whether it can make a positive contribution to international community building. To explain the  peculiar characteristics of East Asian international relations theory, he pointed out how modernization and economic development have evolved at the national level in these countries, and how the traditions and international positions of each country were formed and established.

On the first day, two sessions were held: “Positioning Asia and Kyushu in Shifting Global Geopolitics” and “Integration, Population, and Gender in Northeast & Southeast Asia”; scholars from the USA, Canada, South Korea, Russia, the UK, and Japan discussed the numerous geopolitical and social problems of Northeast Asia. The second day consisted of three sessions: “Sino-Russian Dynamics: The Fault-line of Northeast Asian Competitive Cooperation,” “Migration Policy and the Movement of Peoples in the Russian Far East,” and “Theorizing Northeast Asia: Power, Interests, and Ideology”; at these sessions, scholars from Poland, China, the USA, Russia, Singapore, South Korea, and Japan analyzed the process of formation of regional communities and theory construction from the perspective of bilateral relations in the region. This two-day symposium brought together more than 130 people who helped to make this event a huge success.  

NoA-SRC of the NIHU Area Studies Project for Northeast Asia co-hosted this symposium with several different universities and research organizations including the Center for Northeast Asian Studies (Tohoku University), Center for Asia-Pacific Future Studies (Kyushu University), University of Kitakyushu, Kyushu Economic Research Center, Asian Growth Research Institute, Japan International Border Studies Network (JIBSN), academic institutions and organizations of Kitakyushu City, and the West Japan Industry and Trade Convention Association.

(Written by: Mihoko Kato, Translated by: Aleksandra Kuklina)

[Click here for more information]