East Asia’s strategic positioning toward China: identifying and accounting for intra-regional variations

Jae Ho Chung, Hun Joon Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Relatively few systematic and categorical studies have been conducted on the variant responses by East Asian states to the rise of China, and even fewer dealt with reasons for such intra-regional variations. This study seeks to fill the void by examining the strategic responses by 15 East Asian states for the period of 2011–2016. This period merits close scrutiny because China became more explicitly assertive. The research proceeds in two phases. First, by way of reading into the expert assessments in academic journals, the strategic responses of the 15 states are categorised into balancing, hedging, or bandwagoning. Second, statistical analyses are conducted to see how the intra-regional variations are related to unit-level factors. Of the seven variables analyzed, three–geographical proximity, democracy, and identity–turn out to be crucial in determining the East Asian states’ strategic responses.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)107-128
Number of pages22
JournalAustralian Journal of International Affairs
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2023

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The research for this article was supported by the Asia Research Grant (No. 0448A-20170022 and No. 0448A-20180023) during 2017–2019 from the Asia Center of Seoul National University.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 Australian Institute of International Affairs.


  • China
  • East Asia
  • balancing
  • bandwagoning
  • hedging

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Political Science and International Relations


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