The Rise of Interregionalisms: The Case of the European Union’s Relations with East Asia

Authored by: Bart Gaens

The Ashgate Research Companion to Regionalisms

Print publication date:  January  2012
Online publication date:  March  2016

Print ISBN: 9780754677628
eBook ISBN: 9781315613499
Adobe ISBN: 9781317041863


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The current global order is marked by increased multipolarity and driven by trends such as the relative decline of US influence and the (re-)emergence of other global players such as Russia, China, and India. In addition to the nation state, non-state actors and international organisations and also regional power blocs and more informally organised regional groupings have distinctly gained in importance. The rise of regionalism, meaning the increased significance of regions as units of analysis and policy-making, is a distinctive feature of the post-Cold War era (see for example, Acharya 2007, Katzenstein 2005, and Buzan and Waever 2003). The European Union aspires to play a more prominent role in the world by enhancing its possibilities for coherent external action, and is regarded as the epitome of institutionalised regional integration. Other areas in the world have been marked by enhanced ‘regionness’ through regional institution-building and the development of a multidimensional form of integration (Hettne, Inotai, and Sunkel 1999).

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