Geostrategy in the Asia-Pacific

lspri2650  2021-2022  Louvain-la-Neuve

Geostrategy in the Asia-Pacific
5.00 credits
15.0 h
Main themes
This course examines major geostrategic and security issues facing selected countries in the Pacific Basin, by emphasising both the challenges to regional peace and stability, and opportunities for cooperation. The Asia-Pacific region, as defined for the purposes of this course, is one of the most dynamic regions in the world. In the post-Cold War era, the region has been undergoing a major shift in the balance of power, while struggling with the legacies of the Cold War. With a rising China, a 'rebalancing' US, a more assertive Japan, a nuclear-armed North Korea and two divided nations - Korea and China, as well as several territorial disputes and newly emerging powers in Southeast Asia, the Asia-Pacific is increasingly important in global military and strategic terms, in addition to its significance in economic ones.
- Introduction to the course and review of the course outline
- Conceptualisation of the Asia-Indo-Pacific region and theoretical perspectives
- Alliances, major power (US-Japan-India-China) relations and strategic competition in the Asia-Indo-Pacific region
- Geostrategic issues of the Taiwan Strait and the Korean Peninsula
- Strategy and security in Southeast Asia
- Maritime territorial disputes in the China Seas
- Indo-Pacific minilateralism, ASEAN-led multilateralism and institution-building
Teaching methods
The course emphasises active learning. The teaching method consists of lectures and small group discussions.
The course is taught in an in-person format. In case of a change to code "yellow", "orange" or "red", the teaching mode will be adjusted accordingly.
Evaluation methods
Oral exam (closed book).
The oral exam will be in-person or online (via MSTeams). This will depend on the situation of the pandemic at that time.
Online resources
Lecture slides (PPT) and some of the readings are uploaded on Moodle.
  • E. ATANASSOVA-CORNELIS (2018), “Reconceptualising the Asia-Pacific order: Japan’s response to strategic uncertainties in the era of Trump”, Interdisciplinary Political Studies, Special Issue: Trump and the Post-American World Order, 4(1): 153-83;
  • E. ATANASSOVA-CORNELIS (2020), “Alignment Cooperation and Regional Security Architecture in the Indo-Pacific”, The International Spectator, 55(1): 18-33;
  • S. F. BURGESS and J. BEILSTEIN (2018), “Multilateral Defense Cooperation in the Indo-Asia-Pacific Region: Tentative Steps toward a Regional NATO?”, Contemporary Security Policy, 39 (2): 258–79;
  • Y.R. KASSIM (ed.) (2017), South China Sea Disputes: Flashpoints, Turning Points and Trajectories, World Scientific;
  • I.KIM (2020), “Trump power: Maximum pressure and China’s sanctions enforcement against North Korea”, The Pacific Review, 33 (1): 96-124;
  • A. LANKOV (2009), “Why the US will have to accept a nuclear North Korea”, Korean Journal of Defence Analysis, 21(3): 251-264;
  • T. F. LIAO, K. HARA and K. WIEGAND (eds.) (2016), The China-Japan Border Dispute: Islands of Contention in Multidisciplinary Perspective, Routledge;
  • G. LIN (2016), “Beijing’s new strategies toward a changing Taiwan”, Journal of Contemporary China, 25 (99): 1-15;
  • E.S. MEDEIROS (2019), “The changing fundamentals of US-China relations”, The Washington Quarterly, 42 (3): 93-119;
  • R. MUKHERJEE (2018), “Japan’s Strategic Outreach to India and the Prospects of a Japan-India Alliance”, International Affairs, 94 (4): 835–59;
  • G. ROZMAN (ed.) (2012), East Asian National Identities: Common Roots and Chinese Exceptionalism, Stanford University Press;
  • S.N. SMITH (2019), “Harmonizing the periphery: China’s neighborhood strategy under Xi Jinping”, The Pacific Review;
  • Ø. TUNSJO (2018), The Return of Bipolarity in World Politics: China, the United States, and Geostructural Realism. Columbia University Press.
Teaching materials
  • 1. Plan du cours/Course outline 2. PPT/lecture slides (sur le Moodle) 3. dossier de lecture/course reader (disponible via la Duc/available at la Duc).
Faculty or entity

Programmes / formations proposant cette unité d'enseignement (UE)

Title of the programme
Learning outcomes
Master [120] in Political Sciences: International Relations

Master [120] in Public Administration

Master [120] in Ancient Languages and Literatures: Oriental Studies

Master [60] in Political Sciences: General

Master [120] in Political Sciences: General