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Regular Promotion of Mutual Understanding between Priority Regions and Japan~Exchange Program between Japan and The United States


Shifting Views of Power in the U.S.-Japan Alliance

Implementing Agency Center for a New American Security (CNAS) (USA) Year 2011
Project classification Self-OperatedGrantCommissionedOthers Year project budget implementation 9,088,480yen
Project Outline
The rapid emergence of China, and the general diffusion of power to emerging states and non-state actors, has prompted Japanese and American policy elites to reassess the issue of power. This project examines how perceptions among American and Japanese policy elites regarding the power in the U.S.-Japan alliance across military, economic and transnational dimensions are shifting, and assesses the policy impacts of those changes. Based on its findings, the project will produce policy recommendations to American and Japanese policy experts on how to assess and maintain the strengths of the U.S.-Japan alliance.
Implementation Plan
This project will be conducted by the Center for New American Security (CNAS), an independent and non-partisan think tank based in Washington, D.C. Dr. Patrick Cronin, Senior Advisor and Senior Director of the Asia-Pacific Security Program at CNAS (and a participant of "Promoting Japan-US Relations: An Opinion Leaders' Dialogue," a project conducted by the Sasakawa Peace Foundation), will lead a team of researchers and implement the following activities:
  • Literature review, interviews, and short papers (July to September 2011)
    The project research team will conduct a literature review on the concepts of power and the importance of elite perceptions in world affairs, and Dr. Cronin will prepare a case study for each of the three dimensions of power, i.e. economic strengths, military strengths, and ability to solve transnational issues. The research team will also conduct interviews to examine the perceptions of U.S. and Japanese policy experts regarding power in the U.S.-Japan alliance in these three dimensions.
  • U.S.-Japan Roundtable Meetings (October through December 2011)
    Two roundtable meetings (closed-door) will be held in Tokyo and Washington, D.C. to discuss the case study findings. In addition to Dr. Cronin, a number of American and Japanese experts encompassing both security policy and business communities will be selected to participate in these roundtables.
  • Final report and a Roll-out Conference (final report will be prepared between December 2011 and February 2012, and its roll-out conference will take place in early March 2012):
    Based on the results of the research and roundtable meetings, a final report will be prepared with discussions on power in the U.S.-Japan alliance and policy recommendations to enhance the alliance in the future. The report will be rolled out at a public conference to be held in Washington, D.C. and widely shared with experts in the policy, business and diplomatic communities in both the United States and Japan.
Project Results
This project examined the power of the U.S.-Japan alliance and produced policy recommendations on how to strengthen the alliance. Specifically, a project team led by Dr. Patrick Cronin, Senior Advisor and Senior Director of the Asia-Pacific Security Program at the Center for a New American Security (CNAS), conducted research and interviews to survey the views of elites in the united States and Japan on the two countries’ three dimensions of power: economic strengths, military strengths, and the ability to address transnational issues such as energy security.
The results were summarized and released in a final report along with policy recommendations.