Recent Issue – Vol 82, No 1 – Spring 2009

Institutional Change in North Korean Economic Development Since 1984: The Competition Between Hegemonic and Non-hegemonic Rules and Norms Transition Dynamics.

By Jae-Cheon Lim

This paper examines North Korean economic and policy changes since 1984 from an institutional perspective by focusing on the following four critical junctures: the Law of the Management of Joint Ventures in 1984; the policy of special economic zones in 1991; the mass starvation from 1995 to 1998; and the Economic Improvement Measures in 2002. How did broad situational change play a role in the North Korean government’s policy changes and how did the policy changes contribute to institutional change in the North? Were there any policy conflicts among the North Korean elite? How did power struggles among the elite infl uence policy outcomes? The paper argues that a specific institutional area’s arrangement is broadly divided into two categories of rules and norms: one set of hegemonic and several sets of nonhegemonic rules and norms. The hegemonic rules and norms defi ne the main features of an institutional order. Each set of non-hegemonic rules and norms compete with the hegemonic for the dominant status in institutional settings. This competition between hegemonic and non-hegemonic rules and norms functions as the medium of institutional development. Since 1984, the contention between hegemonic socialist and non-hegemonic capitalist rules and norms has defi ned economic institutional change in North Korea.

En français

Unused Powers: Contestation over Autonomy Legislation in the PRC.

By Yash Ghai and Sophia Woodman

The most important power granted to autonomous areas in China’s system of Nationalities Regional Autonomy should allow them to modify higher-level laws and policies through autonomy legislation. This is one of the two principal methods for the exercise of autonomy, with the other being the holding of key government posts by minority members. Yet efforts by the five autonomous regions to exercise their powers to enact autonomy legislation have been repeatedly blocked. The granting of autonomy powers in the PRC has been half-hearted, and few powers commonly associated with autonomy systems are available to autonomous areas. Even so, in China as elsewhere, giving autonomy legal expression, however vague, has made the law a field for contention over its proper meaning and scope.
Based primarily on Chinese documentary sources, this article focuses on contestation over the meaning of autonomy in the terrain of law. In their explorations of the modifi cation power and the relative status of autonomy legislation, legal scholars and minority activists articulate a vision of autonomy under a future constitutionally governed state. Such an “extensive” autonomy, defined by its historical roots to allow for different “systems,” could potentially provide some space for real self-government. In contrast, some powerful central government institutions block development of this fi eld of law, implicitly supporting the view that autonomy is history and economic development holds the key to the future. Even given the necessary political will, in the absence of the key components of autonomy systems, divisions within the Chinese state could create barriers to the realization of “genuine autonomy.”

En français

Big Trouble in Little Chinatown: Australia, Taiwan and the April 2006 Post-Election Riot in the Solomon Islands.

By Joel Atkinson

Taiwan’s effort to carry on diplomatic relations in the face of hostility from China has collided with Australia’s reform agenda for the Pacific Islands. This issue is particularly acute in Solomon Islands, which has longstanding ties with Taiwan and a close association with Australia. In the lead-up to the April 2006 elections in Solomon Islands, a local politician accused Taiwan of funding candidates. The same politician later stated that popular anger towards Taiwan sparked the post-election riot that devastated Honiara’s Chinatown. Although neither of these accusations was supported with evidence, they prompted Australia to publicly criticize Taiwan’s involvement in Solomon Islands. This article argues Australia’s reaction was due to existing Australia-Taiwan tension over the South Pacific, and because Australian policymakers found Taiwan a more palatable focus than acknowledging the ambitious reach of Australia’s reform efforts. Australia’s rhetoric drew a negative reaction from Taiwan, which believed Canberra was seeking a scapegoat to deflect from its inability to anticipate or control the riot. The incident also contributed to the Taiwan government’s perception of Australia as increasingly pro-China. Despite subsequent efforts from Taiwan and Solomon Islands to improve accountability for Taiwan’s aid, the differing interests of Australia and Taiwan continued to be an issue as funding from Taiwan became more important to Solomon Islands Prime Minister Sogavare during his dispute with Australia. This article examines the interaction between Australia and Taiwan over Solomon Islands, and considers its signifi cance to wider Australia-Taiwan involvement in the South Pacific.

En français

China’s Leadership in the World ICT Industry: A Successful Story of Its “Attracting-in” and “Walking-out” Strategy for the Development of High Tech Industries?

By Lutao Ning

This paper questions whether China’s “attracting-in” (selective introduction of inward foreign direct investment, foreign technologies and import) and “walking-out” (export and outward investment expansion) strategies have enabled it to achieve a leadership position in the world information and communication technology (ICT) industry. In 2004, China overtook the US to become the world’s largest ICT exporter. The author argues that “attracting-in” has successfully created favourable conditions for the industry to grow out of China’s transitional economic and political system, but has been unable to facilitate “walking-out” to enable Chinese enterprises to substantially achieve a real leadership position. This is because there is great uncertainty in how to adjust the industrial strategy of the East Asian “catching-up” era to meet the challenges raised by the dynamism of global competition today. Rather than provoking head-to-head competition, China’s rise in the world ICT industry has complemented the increasing specialization of multinational corporations.

En français

Beyond the Myth: Reeassessing the Security Crisis on the Korean Peninsula During the Mid-1960s.

By Tae-Gyun Park

In contemporary news coverage and in the academic historiography, the Republic of Korea (ROK) is often described as the victim in most clashes between the ROK and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK). However, through a detailed review of the tensions in the late 1960s, this article argues that the ROK was never entirely innocent in various security crises on the Korean Peninsula, and that a contextual analysis in historical and contemporary settings is far more useful in understanding the nature of the ROK-DPRK tensions than the clichéd denouncements of an “evil” regime.
The number of clashes between the ROK and the DPRK in 1967 shot up tenfold compared to the year before. These security dilemmas created an unfavourable situation for the US government, in that they prevented the ROK from dispatching further combat troops to Vietnam. The combination of pre-emptive incursions and aggressive acts of retaliation launched by the ROK troops against the DPRK further aggravated the situation, resulting in an ever-greater divide between the perspectives of the North and the South. On the one hand, the ROK government believed that the security problem would invite more assistance from the US; on the other, for the US offi cials, the ROK’s attacks meant that the ROK government was actually the source of trouble.
Ultimately, the evidence examined in this article suggests that the crisis of 1968 can be understood as an inevitable extension of the clashes in 1967. The current paper argues that the role played by the ROK government in igniting the crisis was anything but passive and that the strategy taken by the ROK government during this brief period led to a signifi cant deterioration of the US-ROK relationship throughout the 1970s and onward.

En français

Books Reviewed In This Issue

Asia General

TOURISM AT THE GRASSROOTS: Villagers and Visitors in the Asia-Pacific. By John Connell and Barbara Rugendyke. Reviewed by Lamont Lindstrom

CHINA, EAST ASIA AND THE GLOBAL ECONOMY: Regional and Historical Perspectives. By Takeshi Hamashita; edited by Linda Grove and Mark Selden. Reviewed by Robert B. Marks

GOVERNING FINANCE: East Asia’s Adoption of International Standards. By Andrew Walter. Reviewed by Marc Quintyn

THE DIGNITY OF NATIONS: Equality, Competition, and Honor in East Asian Nationalism. Edited by Sechin Y.S. Chien and John Fitzgerald.
Reviewed by Hyung-Gu Lynn

DRAGONS WITH CLAY FEET?: Transition, Sustainable Land Use, and Rural Environment In China and Vietnam. Reviewed by Jack Patrick Hayes

China and Inner Asia

CHINA’S REFORMS AND INTERNATIONAL POLITICAL ECONOMY. Edited by David Zweig and Chen Zhimin. Reviewed by Allen Carlson

DOING BUSINESS IN RURAL CHINA: Liangshan’s New Ethnic Entrepreneurs. By Thomas Heberer. Reviewed by Stig Thogersen

Reviewed by Nicholas Simon

FIELDWORK CONNECTIONS: The Fabric of Ethnographic Collaboration in China and America. By Bamo Ayi, Stevan Harrell and Ma Lunzy.
Reviewed by Susan K. McCarthy

KEEPING DEMOCRACY AT BAY: Hong Kong and the Challenge of Chinese Political Reform. By Suzanne Pepper. Reviewed by Sonny Lo

Northeast Asia

21ST-CENTURY JAPANESE MANAGEMENT: New Systems, Lasting Values. By James C. Abegglen. Reviewed by Patrick Reinmoeller

FOREIGN DIRECT INVESTMENT IN JAPAN: Multinationals’ Role in Growth and Globalization. By Ralph Paprzycki and Kyoji Fukao. Reviewed by Kozo Kiyota

RETHINKING JAPANESE SECURITY: Internal and External Dimensions. By Peter J. Katzenstein. Reviewed by David A. Welch

NORMALIZING JAPAN Politics, Identity, and the Evolution of Security Practice. By Andrew L. Oros. Reviewed by Hugo Dobson

MULTICULTURALISM IN THE NEW JAPAN: Crossing the Boundaries Within. Edited by Nelson H. H. Graburn, John Ertl and R. Kenji Tierney.
Reviewed by Robert Moorehead

JAPAN’S DIVERSITY DILEMMAS: Ethnicity, Citizenship, and Education. Edited by Soo im Lee, Stephen Murphy-Shigematsu and Harumi Befu.
Reviewed by John F. Morris

PRIMARY SCHOOL IN JAPAN: Self, Individuality and Learning in Elementary Education. By Peter Cave. Reviewed by Christopher Bjork

JAPAN AND THE LEAGUE OF NATIONS: Empire and World Order, 1914-1938. By Thomas W. Burkman. Reviewed by Hatsue Shinohara

THE ETHICS OF AESTHETICS IN JAPANESE CINEMA AND LITERATURE: Polygraphic Desire. By Nina Cornyetz. Reviewed by Timothy Iles


NORTH KOREA IN THE BRINK: Struggle for Survival. By Glyn Ford with Soyoung Kwon. Reviewed by Geir Helgesen

NORTH OF THE DMZ: Essays On Daily Life in North Korea. By Andrei Lankov. Reviewed by Avram Agov

South Asia

JUKI GIRLS, GOOD GIRLS: Gender and Cultural Politics in Sri Lanka’s Global Garment Industry. By Caitrin Lynch. Reviewed by Dawn H. Currie

Southeast Asia

MARITIME SECURITY IN SOUTHEAST ASIA. Edited by Kwa Chong Guan and John K. Skogan. Reviewed by Netina Tan

TAKING SOUTHEAST ASIA TO MARKET: Commodities, Nature, and People in the Neoliberal Age. Edited by Joseph Nevins and Nancy Lee Peluso.
Reviewed by Derek Hall


Reviewed by Danièle Bélanger

CULT, CULTURE, AND AUTHORITY: Princess Lieu Hanh in Vietnamese History. By Olga Dror. Reviewed by Nguyen Thi Dieu

MYANMAR’S LONG ROAD TO NATIONAL RECONCILIATION. Edited by Trevor Wilson. Reviewed by Nicholas Farrelly

WILLIAM J. GEDNEY’S COMPARATIVE TAI SOURCE BOOK: Oceanic Special Publication No. 34. Reviewed by Michael C. Howard

MAKING FIELDS OF MERIT Buddhist Female Ascetics and Gendered Orders in Thailand. By Monica Lindberg Falk. Reviewed by Susan M. Darlington

BEYOND THE GREEN MYTH: Borneo’s Hunter-Gatherers in the Twenty-First Century. Edited by Peter Sercombe and Bernard Sellato.
Reviewed by Gerry Van Klinken

Australasia and the Pacific Region

HUNTING THE COLLECTORS: Pacifi c Collections in Australian Museums, Art Galleries and Archives. Edited by Susan Cochrane & Max Quanchi.
Reviewed by Eric Kline Silverman

Reviewed by Fiona Mccormack

ISLAND MINISTERS: Indigenous Leadership in Nineteenth Century Pacifi c Islands Christianity. By Raeburn Lange. Reviewed by Judith Bennett

MEMORIES OF WAR: Micronesians in the Pacific War. By Susanne Falgout Lin Poyer and Laurence M. Carucci. Reviewed by Glenn Petersen

HOUSE-GIRLS REMEMBER: Domestic Workers in Vanuatu. Edited by Margaret Rodman, Daniela Kramer, Lissant Bolton and Jean Tarisese.
Reviewed by John P. Taylor

THE ANTHROPOLOGY OF MORALITY IN MELANESIA AND BEYOND. Edited by John Barker. Reviewed by Alexandra Widmer


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