The momentum of East Asian community building has clearly picked up since the Asian financial crisis in the late 1990s. Although regional leaders may still disagree on the vision and roadmap for a future East Asian community, they have demonstrated a strong political motivation to go forward with a more Asia-oriented grouping. At this CNAPS Presentation, Dr. Richard Hu discussed China’s interests and policies toward regional community building in the context of the strength and limits of China’s rising soft power in East Asia. He also addressed China’s more positive stance and involvement in community building, and discussed how it is related to China’s overall regional strategy. Finally, looked at the challenges ahead and their implications for the U.S.
Dr. Hu, a CNAPS Visiting Fellow at Bookings, is currently Associate Professor in the Department of Politics and Public Administration at the University of Hong Kong. He received his B.A. in International Politics from Peking University; an M.A. in international relations from SAIS; and a Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of Maryland. He is also an Academic Consultant to the Issyk-Kul Forum, a program sponsored by Japan’s Sasakawa Peace Foundation to promote social, political, and economic development in Central Asia and the South Caucasus. He was a Fellow at the Center for International Trade and Security at the University of Georgia in 1998 and 2001. A prolific writer, Dr. Hu is the author of numerous books and academic journal articles on China’s foreign policy, Sino-U.S. relations, East Asian regionalism, and security issues.