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Research Centre for East Asian Studies Groningen

Call for papers: Asia, Europe and the US in Global Governance: Assessing Recent Changes in US Foreign Policy, Yantai (Conference POSTONED)

Academic Conference
19 May 2017

Asia, Europe and the US in Global Governance: Assessing Recent Changes in US Foreign Policy

Invitation to staff of the University of Groningen and its partner institutions to submit paper proposals

Hosts: University of Groningen, Globalization Studies Groningen (GSG), Centre for East Asian Studies Groningen (CEASG) and Department of International Relations and International Organization (IRIO), Faculty of Arts, in cooperation with the China Agricultural University, Beijing/Yantai
Venue : Yantai, China (campus of the “University of Groningen Yantai (UGY)”)
Dates: (Postponed)
Deadline proposals: open

Conference theme

Since the days of his electoral campaign US President Donald Trump has created incredulity, consternation and in some cases even outright fear among the international partners of the US with his comments on foreign policy and international affairs. Be it on international security, trade, migration, development cooperation, climate change, and so on, President Trump not only seems to advocate a radical break with many policies of his predecessor, it also appears that he is ready to depart from decade-old bipartisan tenets of US foreign policy. Given the continuing central role of the US in an international system already fraught with tensions and crises, this sort of rhetoric, as well as some of President Trump’s first concrete actions after taking office, may have multiple repercussions in global politics.

However, foreign-policy making is a complex process, in the US just like anywhere else, and many of the persons involved are known to have preferences that differ from those of the president, including even some members of his cabinet. Also, international politics develop as a dynamic and intricate interplay between multiple actors in a structured environment, and this means that the real effects of the recent changes in the US will also depend on the broader international context and the concrete reactions of other players. All this makes it exceedingly challenging to formulate specific expectations, let alone predictions, about the course and consequences of US foreign policy under President Trump.
The purpose of this conference is to meet this challenge with regard to the effects of recent changes in US foreign policy on Asia, Europe and global governance more broadly. In a sustained cooperative effort, established experts from various countries and disciplines will analyse the past role of the US in Asian and European security, economic affairs, and international organizations in general and assess on this basis what the plans and actions of the new administration imply for future international relations with a focus on Asia and Europe. The goal will be to develop systematic expectations and scenarios for the months and years to come so as to help us to understand how the Trump administration affects international politics.

Thematic areas include the following:

  • Security and stability in Europe and changes in US policy under Trump
  • The Asian security structure and the changing role of the US
  • Europe-Asia relations and the indirect effects of US foreign policy
  • Commercial liberalization in Asia and Europe and the global free trade regime under the impression of protectionist tendencies in the US
  • Regionalism and international organizations in an era of US opposition
  • Trump’s electoral victory and its effect on populist movements in other countries

Scholars are asked to perform three analytical steps in their contributions: first, analyse the past role(s) of the US in the respective thematic field; second, carefully study the related rhetoric and initial actions of the Trump administration; third, taking into consideration the international context, create scenarios for future developments. We hope for a strong participation on the part of the established cooperation partners of the University of Groningen in Asia. The academic excellence of these institutions and their scholars is a unique resource on which this conference can build. Naturally scholars from other regions, and especially Europe and the US, will also contribute to the conference.

How to submit paper proposals:

Anyone interested is kindly asked to submit her/his name and institutional affiliation, along with the title of the proposed paper, a paper abstract (200 words max.) and a short bio (100 words max) to the two academic coordinators of the conference, Dr Frank Gaenssmantel and Dr Francesco Giumelli, email: yantaiconference2017
Paper proposals may also be grouped and sent in by the partner institutions rather than individual scholars, if that is preferred. The academic coordinators, in close consultation with the conference hosts (see above) will select papers on the basis of their academic qualities and thematic focus. Limited funding is available to cover travel and other conference-related expenses for participants.

Conference: timing and format

The conference will take place at the prospective campus of the University of Groningen Yantai (UGY) (currently under development), Shandong Province, China. It will start with an opening dinner for all participants, followed by paper presentations and discussion in thematic panels. Panels should regroup scholars from different institutions so as to enhance academic exchange and cooperation. All proceedings will be held in the English language.

The organizers are considering a follow-up conference. This should allow for revision of papers in light of the discussions during the first conference, and possibly also the addition of new papers. The ambition is to create a coherent set of contributions that can be published in an edited volume.

After the conclusion of the regular conference programme a local sightseeing tour will be organized, depending on available funding and interest among the participants. For participants from the University of Groningen, the programme will also include an extended campus visit and meetings with Chinese colleagues involved in the development of the Yantai campus and teaching and research there.

For further information, please visit the CEASG website,, or write to the conference email address, yantaiconference2017

Last modified:13 September 2017 2.27 p.m.

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