Security and Democracy: The ASEAN charter and the dilemmas of regionalism in South-East Asia

Jones, David Martin (2008) Security and Democracy: The ASEAN charter and the dilemmas of regionalism in South-East Asia. International Affairs, 84 4: 735-756. doi:10.1111/j.1468-2346.2008.00735.x

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Author Jones, David Martin
Title Security and Democracy: The ASEAN charter and the dilemmas of regionalism in South-East Asia
Journal name International Affairs   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0020-5850
Publication date 2008-01-01
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1111/j.1468-2346.2008.00735.x
Open Access Status
Volume 84
Issue 4
Start page 735
End page 756
Total pages 22
Place of publication Malden, MA
Publisher Wiley-Blackwell Publishing, Inc.
Language eng
Subject C1
9403 International Relations
160606 Government and Politics of Asia and the Pacific
Abstract In November 2007, the heads of the ten member governments of the Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN) signed a charter that will, once ratified, give the association a legal personality. The charter, significantly, requires more of its members than a reassertion of the traditional ASEAN norm of non-interference and the practice of consensus. The charter lists a number of novel goals among the organization’s purposes: ‘to strengthen democracy, enhance good governance and the rule of law, and to promote and protect human rights and fundamental freedoms.’ In view of the wide economic and political disparities between the member states of ASEAN, this article examines whether strengthening democracy would in fact facilitate ASEAN’s goal of becoming an integrated political, economic and security community. Rather than enhancing an integrated community, democratization would arguably create a faultline between the more politically mature and economically developed states and a northern tier of less developed, authoritarian single-party dominant regimes in South-East Asia. Moreover, given China’s emerging political and economic importance to the region, such a strategy would, as if by an invisible hand, draw the more authoritarian ASEAN states into China’s less than democratic embrace. This article concludes that rather than strengthening democracy, ASEAN’s charter needs urgently to reinforce practices of rule governance and mechanisms of market integration to enhance both ASEAN’s economic profile as well as the region’s autonomy.
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: 2009 Higher Education Research Data Collection
School of Political Science and International Studies Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 19 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 18 times in Scopus Article | Citations
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Created: Thu, 09 Apr 2009, 01:54:48 EST by Elmari Louise Whyte on behalf of School of Political Science & Internat'l Studies