Japan’s Quiet Leadership: Reshaping the Indo-Pacific

UNIVERSITY OF EDINBURGH Asian Studies Seminar Series 2022/23

by Mireya Solís

(Director of the Center for East Asia Policy Studies and Philip Knight Chair in Japan Studies, Brookings Institution)

Wednesday, April 5 2023, 16.00 – 18.00

(including a networking reception)

VENUE: 7 George Square, S.1

Abstract: In her forthcoming book, Dr. Solís tells the story of Japan’s reinvention as a network power to overcome the harsh realities of diminishing relative capabilities. In reshaping the Indo-Pacific, Tokyo deployed a robust economic strategy of trade integration and infrastructure finance; and a proactive security diplomacy cultivating new partnerships with regional and extra-regional actors and deepening the alliance with the United States. Nevertheless, acute geopolitical rifts, Japan’s pandemic insularity, and the securitization of international economic relations are testing the mettle of Japan’s statecraft of connectivity. In this new era, Japan-Europe relations have deepened with shared concerns over protecting rules-based trade, more diplomatic activity in the Indo-Pacific, and joint efforts to respond to the Ukraine crisis.

Bio: Mireya Solís is director of the Center for East Asia Policy Studies, Philip Knight Chair in Japan Studies, and a senior fellow in the Foreign Policy program at Brookings. Prior to her arrival at Brookings, Solís was a tenured associate professor at American University’s School of International Service. Solís is an expert on Japanese foreign economic policy, U.S.-Japan relations, international trade policy, and Asia-Pacific economic integration. She is the author of  Banking on Multinationals: Public Credit and the Export of Japanese Sunset Industries (2004) and Dilemmas of a Trading Nation: Japan and the United States in the Evolving Asia Pacific Order (2017) as well as co-editor of several edited volumes. Dilemmas of a Trading Nation received Masayoshi Ohira Memorial Award in 2018. Solís has offered expert commentary to the media and major newspapers. Solís earned a doctorate in government and a master’s in East Asian studies from Harvard University, and a bachelor’s in international relations from El Colegio de México. She is trustee of the Japan-America Society of Washington DC.

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