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Time to break Japan’s bamboo ceiling


Author: Editorial Board, East Asia Forum Japan is a tough place to be a working woman. Japanese women are among the best educated in the world, but Japan squanders much of the human capital potential of that half of its population. The World Economic Forum’s 2017 Global Gender Gap Report ranks Japan at number one on health […]

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Empowering the women of Japan


Author: Kimie Iwata, Japan Institute for Women’s Empowerment and Diversity Management The empowerment of women has been under discussion in Japan for over 40 years. In the 70s and 80s, it was usually discussed from a human rights perspective. In the 90s and 2000s, it was reframed as a response to Japan’s demographic issues — […]

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Shadows of the past haunt Japan–North Korea relations

Author: Lionel Babicz, University of Sydney There are more than geostrategic, diplomatic and military factors behind the importance of Japan for North Korea and of North Korea for Japan: their present relationship is also rooted in history. North Korea meticulously cultivates the memory of colonialism, resistance and liberation, starting with the gradual takeover of Korea […]

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Demonetisation one year on


Author: Ashima Goyal, IGIDR In November 2016, India made an unexpected economic move and demonetised 86 per cent of the country’s currency in circulation. One year on, any assessment of India’s demonetisation policy is clouded by the similar impacts of subsequent economic reform, namely the introduction of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) in July […]

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The next phase of China’s trade and industry strategy


Author: Tristan Kenderdine, Future Risk While most eyes on China’s 19th Party Congress focused on personnel movements in the executive arm of government, the practical policy machinations occur in the administrative arm — the State Council. This policy nexus directs government trade and industrial policy across a range of old and new industrial sectors, in […]

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Opposition becoming a prop-osition under LDP changes


Author: Aurelia George Mulgan, UNSW Canberra Japan’s lower house election presents an unusually contradictory outcome: a solid performance by a political party led by an unpopular prime minister. It would seem that many voters separated support for the winning Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) from support for Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. Conscious of the public perception […]

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A new great power pact or a great deprivation of tact?


Author: Greg Raymond, ANU Great states, wrote US scholar Edward Luttwak, commonly suffer from a condition known as ‘great state autism’: an insensitivity to the feelings and views of other states. Luttwak argued that nowhere was this condition stronger than in China, where he thought the Chinese Communist Party’s lack of domestic political legitimacy bred […]

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Has Trump any real option in Afghanistan?


Author: Frédéric Grare, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace On 21 August 2017, after months of hesitation and much against his own instincts, US President Donald Trump announced a new strategy for Afghanistan and South Asia. Recognising that ‘a hasty withdrawal would create a vacuum that terrorists, including ISIS and al Qaeda, would instantly fill’, Trump […]

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The Belt and Road Initiative and Asia’s changing order


Author: Nick Bisley, La Trobe University In the two days of meetings from 8 November between President Donald Trump and President Xi Jinping in Beijing on Trump’s first state visit, it appears that they did not talk at all about the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). Trump’s tour reflected the tendency of his administration to […]

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