East-West Center Special Reports

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Special Reports is a series produced by the staff and visiting fellows of the Special projects unit of the East-West Center. The series focuses on timely, critical issues concerning the United States, Asia, and the Pacific and is intended for a wide audience of those who make or influence policy decisions throughout the region.

The East-West Center ScholarSpace community contains digital versions of just some of the several thousand books, periodicals, and unpublished papers generated by the Center over the past 50 years. Find a complete list of recent East-West Center publications and learn how to obtain them at EastWestCenter.org/publications . Search for recent and older works from 1960 - present using the Center's library catalog at EastWestCenter.org/riscatalog.


Recent Submissions

Now showing 1 - 10 of 14
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    Confucianism defies the computer : the conflict within the Korean press
    (Honolulu, HI : East-West Center, 1992) Halvorsen, David E.
    This special report is one of a series produced by the staff and visiting fellows of the Special projects unit of the East-West Center. The series focuses on timely, critical issues concerning the united states, Asia, and the Pacific and is intended for a wide audience of those who make or influence policy decisions throughout the region.
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    Chrysanthemum and sword revisited : Is Japanese militarism resurgent?
    (Honolulu, HI : Special Projects, East-West Center, 1991) Halloran, Richard
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    Reform or revolution? : the Aquino government and prospects for the Philippines
    (Honolulu, HI : East-West Center, 1991) Richburg, Keith B.
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    Correspondents give their views on Japan-U.S. news coverage : survey of foreign correspondents based in Tokyo and Washington, D.C.
    (Honolulu, HI : East-West Center, 1990) Hewett, Robert B.
    Includes names and press affiliations of correspondents participating in the survey.
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    Porpoises among the whales : small navies in Asia and the Pacific
    (Honolulu : East-West Center, 1994-03) Morgan, Joseph R.
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    The Asia-Pacific airline industry : economic boom and political conflict
    (Honolulu : East-West Center, 1995-10) La Croix, Sumner J. ; Wolff, David Jonathan
    High rates of economic growth in Asia are spurring the rapid expansion of commercial aviation industries serving Asia and the Pacific. The number of passengers carried across the Pacific increased at an annual rate of 8.6 percent during 1982-92, compared with 5.4 percent on all other routes. And with 16 of the world’s 25 busiest air routes, Asia’s major airports are already near capacity. The region will soon account for the world’s largest increase in aircraft purchasing, maintenance, and repair, generating tremendous revenues for firms that service the industry.Although many Asia-Pacific nations are benefiting form the boom in air traffic, the continued expansion threatens the framework of bilateral agreements that have governed Asia-Pacific aviation since the end of World War II. Growth in the number of passengers, airlines, and routes has stimulated competition and intensified aviation disputes, thereby increasing tensions in the international relations of the region. Potentially, such tensions could fuel increased protectionism.The United States has been actively campaigning for countries in Asia to adopt an "Open Skies" regime that would allow free international trade in airline services. Although liberalization would have positive effects, such as lower fares and more efficient airline management, some Asian governments worry that it could also lead to predatory pricing, a retreat from low-demand routes, and a tendency toward oligopoly. And many Asian airlines, which owe their profitability in part to restrictive bilateral treaties, are partially government-owned; therefore, governments may be reluctant to adopt new competitive arrangements that eliminate or reduce these profits.Although free trade is usually superior to protected trade, it also generates losers – countries whose national airlines would shrink or even disappear in a liberalized regime. Unless losing countries receive some compensation, they are unlikely to support a free-trade regime. The Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Working Group on Transportation could provide a forum for the formulation and discussion of new policies for international cooperation in aviation throughout the Asia-Pacific region.
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    Intruding on the Hermit : glimpses of North Korea
    (Honolulu : East-West Center, 1993) Martin, Bradley K.
    "Based on three visits to North Korea by an American journalist between 1979 and 1992, this report highlights changes from the 1970s, when the North had much to boast about in its comparative level of economic development, to the 1990s when communism's failure at home and abroad have placed the regime in desperate straits."
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    Democratic transition in Asia : the role of the international community
    (Honolulu : East-West Center, 1994-10) Alagappa, Muthiah
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    The development crisis in Vietnam's mountains
    (Honolulu, HI: East-West Center, 1998-11) Jamieson, Neil L. ; Cuc, Le Trong ; Rambo, A. Terry
    The popular image of a Vietnamese landscape is that of a verdant plain checkered by rice paddies. But most of the country is actually hilly and mountainous, and a third of Vietnamese people live in upland areas. Fifty years ago, the lowlands were teeming and the mountains sparsely inhabited. Since then, rapid population growth, driven by both natural increases and national resettlement programs, has brought about drastic changes in the uplands. Poverty, population growth, environmental degradation, social marginalization, and economic dependency are now interacting to create a downward spiral that is currently reaching crisis proportions, both socially and environmentally. The significance of this crisis is overlooked because current thinking about the uplands is based on a number of popular misconceptions. Among these is the belief that the uplands are remote, empty, and exotic-certainly not central to national development. What happens there, however, has serious ramifications extending to the whole nation, and beyond it to other mountainous regions in Southeast Asia and Southwest China. Environmental degradation, the loss of biological diversity, the deterioration of watersheds and the marginalization of ethnic minorities are just some of the problems occurring in Vietnam's uplands and throughout this vast mountain region. Well-intentioned national and international efforts to ameliorate the problems have produced only very modest results. In some cases they have worsened the situation. For despite the enormous changes in the size and nature of Vietnam's upland population, a "lowland" perspective continues to dominate national life. Indeed, the imposition of lowland models upon upland realities is a major determinant of the crisis. When these simplistic and distorted views of mountain life shape development planning, they contribute to the downward spiral in which so many upland people are now caught. Thus, the spiral cannot be reversed without reform of the powerful underlying structures of knowledge, power, social organization, and economy that control the direction of development. A crucial step is to challenge the conventional wisdom that shapes development models and replace it with new approaches based on critical observation and analysis. The success or failure of efforts to develop the uplands are of critical significance to the achievement of national development goals. Unless the current downward spiral can be reversed, the future well-being of the whole country is at serious risk.
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    Environmental problems in China : estimates of economic costs
    (Honolulu, HI: East-West Center, 1996-04) Smil, Vaclav
    Today's China experiences every imaginable environmental problem, yet its capacity to deal with these challenges is limited. China's poor oil and gas resources mean that its industries and services still overwhelmingly rely on coal, an inefficient fuel and a major polluter. Moreover, it has extensive areas of badly damaged ecosystems. And, like other countries in the early stages of rapid industrial development, China has been slow to allocate capital for environmental management. These facts, together with China's huge population and ambitious development aspirations, make it the world's most worrisome case of environmental degradation, with global repercussions. The annual cost of China's environmental pollution and degradation is probably at least 10 percent of its gross domestic product (GDP) and may well be as high as 15 percent. But China has been spending far less on environmental protection and management than even the 1.5 percent of GDP recommended by the country's leading environmental experts. The effects of pollution and environmental degradation are everywhere. Chronic lung diseases aggravated by air pollution accounted for approximately 25 percent of all deaths in the late 1980s. In only 6 of China's 27 largest cities is drinking water quality within state standards. Contamination of crops by polluted water endangers health and reduces opportunities for export of products. And the loss of arable land to urban encroachment and soil erosion means that, by the year 2000, Bangladesh and Egypt will be the only two populous nations with less arable land per capita than China. If China were to consume resources at the level of South Korea or Taiwan and import crude oil and grain at rates comparable to those of other rapidly growing East Asian economies, it would need more energy and more cereals than are currently available on the world market. Securing the largest possible share of its energy and food needs from domestic sources will be important not only for China's economic progress but also for global stability. Such a strategy can succeed, however, only when China uses its resources efficiently and makes protection of the environment, and a gradual shift to more sustainable ways of running its economy, a matter of high priority.
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