The US-led security network in the Indo-Pacific in international order transition: a South Korean perspective

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Abstract

The liberal security order in the Indo-Pacific led by the US has been transitioning to one managed by a US-led security network. As a result, the geostrategic competition between the US and China has also been transforming to one between this US-led network and China. In the process, Japan, Australia, and India have emerged as major ‘nodes’ of the network. In this context, this paper adopts the concept of ‘network power’ to claim that South Korea—while it still favors being a part of the network—is concerned that it would be relegated to the status of a small peripheral node mainly ‘tied’ to Japan, the regional hub of the network in Northeast Asia. To mitigate this concern, South Korea attempts to avoid unnecessarily seeming to exclude China while still favoring the network; aligns with other regional nodes in the network, whether Australia, India, or some ASEAN states; and increasingly frames its role as that of an active ‘order-shaper’ rather than a passive ‘order-taker’.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)329-350
Number of pages22
JournalPacific Review
Volume36
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Sociology and Political Science

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