Featured Panel Announced for The Asian Conference on Asian Studies 2015

The Asian Conference on Asian Studies 2015 (ACAS2015) will include a Featured Panel discussing conflict in North East Asia. Panel members are from the Ritsumeikan University's College of International Relations, the oldest and most prestigious IR department in Japan. The Asian Conference on Asian Studies 2015 will be held concurrently with The Asian Conference on Cultural Studies 2016, from Thursday, May 28 to Sunday, May 31, 2015, in Kobe, Japan. Conference themes include “Human Rights, Justice, Media and Culture” and “Power”.

The abstract submission deadline for these conferences is April 1, 2015.


Panel Description

This panel addresses arguably the greatest 'elephant in the room' within studies of Sino-Japanese and Sino-US relations: the risk of conflict in North East Asia. The participants of this featured panel are made up of members of the faculty of Ritsumeikan University's College of International Relations, the oldest and most prestigious IR department in Japan. The content of the presentations reflect the breadth of experience within the College and cover topics ranging from sociology, IR theory, peace studies and historical approaches to understanding the region.


Featured Panellists

Dr Thomas French

Ritsumeikan University, Japan

Paper Title: The 'Wild Cards' - The Threat to Peace of Non-State Actors in North East Asia

Thomas French is an Associate Professor in the College of International Relations, Ritsumeikan University. He is a specialist on US-Japanese relations and the Occupation of Japan, and his broader research interests include Japanese security, the Japanese arms industry, and the Self Defense Forces. He is the author of National Police Reserve: The Origin of Japan’s Self Defense Forces (Global Oriental, 2014), the first ever book length examination of the force which preceded the current SDF. He is currently working on a number of projects including an examination of the role of rearmament on Japan's automotive industry, and a book length study of the complete history of the SDF. He is also a Fellow of the Royal Asiatic Society and the UK Higher Education Academy.


Dr Hiroaki Ataka

Ritsumeikan University, Japan

Paper Title: The “Peaceful Rise” of China Discourse and its Performative Consequences

Hiroaki Ataka is an Associate Professor in the College of International Relations at Ritsumeikan University (Japan). He specializes in Critical International Relations Theory, Post-Western International Relations Theory, and Theories of International Society.


Professor Akihiko Kimijima

Ritsumeikan University, Japan

Paper Title: Six Faces of Article 9 - Elucidating the Complexities of Japan’s Postwar Constitution

Akihiko Kimijima is Professor of Constitutional Law and Peace Studies at the College of International Relations at Ritsumeikan University. His recent publications include “From Power Politics to Common Security: The Asia Pacific’s Roadmap to Peace,” in Tatsushi Arai, Shihoko Goto, and Zheng Wang (eds.), Clash of National Identities: China, Japan, and the East China Sea Territorial Dispute (Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, Washington DC, 2013), New Paradigms of Peace Research: The Asia-Pacific Context (Rawat Publications, India, 2012) and the entry, “Article 9,” in Nigel J. Young (ed.), The Oxford International Encyclopedia of Peace (2010). Every year he nominates a candidate for the Nobel Peace Prize.


Dr Zsombor Rajkai

Ritsumeikan University, Japan

Paper Title: The Images of Self and Neighbouring States held by The People of North East Asia

Zsombor Rajkai, PhD (2008, 2010), is an Associate Professor in the College of International Relations at Ritsumeikan University (Japan). He specialises in two fields: the modernisation of non-Western societies, and Sino-Central-Asian historical relations.

See the full list of speakers for this event.

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