Will the twenty-first century be the Asian century? Will the People’s Republic of China (PRC) overtake the United States as the leading global superpower? Will an institutionalised Third Bloc emerge in international relations and challenge the transatlantic alliance that has dominated world politics for such a long time? While opinions on the details differ strongly, there seems to be a certain consensus that the East Asian region, roughly defined as Northeast Asia (Greater China, the two Koreas, Japan and the Russian Far East) plus Southeast Asia (the ten members states of ASEAN), will be globally significant in the years to come and see its role growing. Such a role includes almost all fields such as economics, science and technology, migration, culture, and international relations. These issues are interrelated and often overlap.
This series, therefore, takes as its main focus the field of international relations post-WWII that pertain to the region and in particular the question of collective security and related issues, including options for institutionalised mechanisms of a joint regional security policy. The need for such a focus has become increasingly obvious: shifts in the global balance of power, as well as a multitude of conflicts in the region, some old and unresolved, some new and emerging, actual or potential, call for ongoing detailed appraisal and sustainable solutions.