Journal of Strategic Studies: “Japan’s Post-2012 Institutional Reforms & Sino-Japanese Crisis (In)Stability”

My latest peer-reviewed article… an analysis of the implications of recent institutional reforms–esp. the new National Security Council–for Japan’s crisis management capabilities…has just been published in the newest issue of Journal of Strategic Studies. This piece was coauthored with Professor Andrew Erickson of the U.S. Naval War College.

  • Liff, Adam P. and Andrew S. Erickson. “From Management Crisis to Crisis Management? Japan’s Post-2012 Institutional Reforms and Sino-Japanese Crisis (In)Stability.” Journal of Strategic Studies 40, no. 5 (2017): 604-638.
  • Abstract: Since 2012, China’s assertion of its sovereignty claim to the contested Senkaku/Diaoyu Islands has significantly raised the risk of a potentially escalatory political-military crisis with Japan. As circumstances worsen, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has championed major institutional reforms aimed at centralizing Japanese security policy decision-making and vastly improving crisis management. This article assesses these reforms’ significance for ameliorating Japan’s long-standing internal crisis management weaknesses, and enhancing its ability to communicate with Beijing promptly under challenging conditions. While significant issues remain, recent developments – especially the establishment of Japan’s first-ever National Security Council – demonstrate significant progress. Bilaterally, however, important firebreaks remain conspicuously absent.
  • Keywords: Japan, crisis management, security, National Security Council, China