4th Keynote Speaker: Brendan Howe

PHISO is very honored to have Professor Brendan Howe as one of the keynote speakers for the 3rd international conference on November 09-10, 2019 in Cebu City. To register for the conference, click here. July 31, 2019 is the deadline of registration.


Contested Peacebuilding and Post-Crisis Reconstruction in East Asia: Intervention versus State Sovereignty in the Promotion of Human-Centred Good Governance

Human security, peacebuilding, humanitarian assistance, and development cooperation are increasingly prominent concepts in diplomatic theory and practice. They pose new challenges to international cooperation and global governance, but also open up space for new actors and new diplomatic modalities. Unlike “old” models of diplomacy, “new” diplomatic initiatives can be wielded by a variety of state and non-state actors, even if they lack traditional power resources. In particular, the end of the Cold War has empowered the activism of a new generation of “middle powers.” To maximize relevance and impact, a degree of selectivity is required, in terms of policy prioritization and/or geographical region. The rapidly shifting nature of the humanitarian landscape in the 21st century therefore presents middle powers with a “noble opportunity” to do something that is both normatively right and beneficial to others, while also in the national interest. While human security and the Responsibility to Protect (R2P) have been at the center of debates on engagement with crisis-affected regimes, and the provision of safe havens for the most vulnerable, differences between “Asian” and “Western” understandings have led to radically different policy proposals. Essentially the “West” holds a narrow view of human security, but an interventionary interpretation of R2P, with the two being closely linked; whereas in Asia the linkage between the two is rejected, and a broad conceptualization of human security, along with a non-interventionary understanding of the R2P dominates. This research program assesses the impact of these competing interpretations upon the niche diplomacy of representative middle powers, and upon crisis-affected states in East Asia.


Brendan Howe (PhD Political Science, Trinity College, Dublin; MA International Conflict Analysis, Canterbury; BA/MA Modern History, Oxford) is Associate Dean and Full Professor at the Graduate School of International Studies, Ewha Womans University, Korea. He is currently President of the Asian Political and International Studies Association, and Co-President of the Korean International Studies Association. He researches on human security, peacebuilding, middle power diplomacy, and democratic governance in East Asia, and has published a dozen books and over 80 articles and book chapters on related topics. Recent major publications include Regional Cooperation for Peace and Development (Routledge, 2018), National Security, Statecentricity, and Governance in East Asia (Springer, 2017), Peacekeeping and the Asia-Pacific (with Boris Kondoch, Brill, 2016), Democratic Governance in Northeast Asia: A Human-Centred Approach to Evaluating Democracy (Palgrave, 2015). Post-Conflict Development in East Asia (Ashgate, 2014), and The Protection and Promotion of Human Security in East Asia (Palgrave, 2013). He is the Editor of the Asian International Studies Review, and a series editor for Palgrave Macmillan (Security, Development, and Human Rights in East Asia).

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