School of Humanities and Social Sciences (HASS)

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Bridging civil society and government agencies:
Partnership for development policy formulation in the Asia Pacific region

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Our next Seminar....

8 September 2014
ASEAN and its New Democratic Fault-line: The South China Sea Case Study
Seminar Venue: 29-106 (Hass Seminar room, entrance from Bldg 28 front)
Time: 12:10 - 13:30
A/Prof. Christopher Roberts (Associate Professor and Director of Executive Development UNSW Canberra)
Chair: Dr Jian Zhang


During the Cold War, Southeast Asia was clearly divided between the socialist countries in the north and the capitalist ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) members in the South. However, the end of the Cold War coincided with what Francis Fukuyama termed the ‘end of history’ – ‘the end point of mankind's ideological evolution and the universalization of Western liberal democracy as the final form of human government’. These events, together with an emerging global consensus capitalist approaches to economic governance, provided an opportunity for all of Southeast Asia to be united under the umbrella of ASEAN. Nonetheless, Fukuyama’s thesis may have been premature. This presentation provides a preliminary review of the evolution of ASEAN cohesion, the challenges such cohesion has faced, and an associated nexus with political values. Through an analysis of events surrounding the South China Sea, the presentation contends that political values represent the new fault-line along which contending alignments with the great powers (and subsequent disunity) can be best understood.

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UNSW ADFA Asia Pacific Seminar Series

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