Experts Richard Bush, Ian Bremmer and Kent Calder, provide insights on managing risk in East Asia, and into the current state of the regional security relationships. With the rise of tensions in Northeast Asia over the past few months, understanding the complex interactions among China, Japan and the two Koreas has become more important than ever, as has understanding the effect such tensions have on the United States and its interaction with these countries. The Brookings Institution’s Richard Bush, the Eurasia Group’s Ian Bremmer, and Johns Hopkins University’s Kent Calder.Dr. Bush began the program by reminding the audience of the September 2010 incident involving a Chinese fishing boat and Japanese Coast Guard vessel that occurred near the disputed Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands, an area that has long caused tension in Sino-Japanese relations. He noted that fervent nationalist sentiment and the structures of government in both countries can easily turn small incidents into large political controversies. “Stuff will happen,” Dr. Bush concluded, remarking that although such incidents will inevitably occur, it is unlikely they will escalate into major crises before cooler heads prevail.Describing the structural deficiencies present in both nations, Dr. Calder agreed with Richard Bush. He remains basically optimistic, noting that Japan, China, and South Korea have been recently strengthened their relationships through several tri-lateral meetings.Dr. Bremmer concurred with Dr. Bush’s position that North Korea was a more serious immediate threat to regional stability than tensions between and among Japan, China, and South Korea. “One thing I’ll tell you as a political scientist is that transition and totalitarian are two T’s that don’t go well together. They don’t play nicely.” He sees the region’s security risks largely in economic and political terms."
Dr. Ian Bremmer
Mr. Ian Bremmer is the president of Eurasia Group, the leading global political risk research and consulting firm.
In 1998, Mr. Bremmer founded Eurasia Group with just $25,000. Today, the company has offices in New York, Washington, and London, as well as a network of experts and resources around the world. Eurasia Group provides financial, corporate, and government clients with information and insight on how political developments move markets.
Mr. Bremmer created Wall Street's first global political risk index, and has authored several books, including the national bestsellers, Every Nation for Itself: Winners and Losers in a G-Zero World and The End of the Free Market: Who Wins the War Between States and Corporations? He is a contributor for the Financial TimesA-List and Reuters.com, and writes "The Call" blog on ForeignPolicy.com. He has also published articles in the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, the New York Times, Newsweek, Harvard Business Review, and Foreign Affairs. He appears regularly on CNBC, Fox News Channel, National Public Radio, and other networks.
He has a PhD in political science from Stanford University (1994), and was the youngest-ever national fellow at the Hoover Institution. He presently teaches at Columbia University, and has held faculty positions at the EastWest Institute and the World Policy Institute. In 2007, he was named a Young Global Leader of the World Economic Forum. His analysis focuses on global macro political trends and emerging markets, which he defines as "those countries where politics matter at least as much as economics for market outcomes."
He grew up in Boston, and now lives in New York and Washington, DC.
Richard Bush’s two-decade public service career spans Congress, the intelligence community and the U.S. State Department. He currently focuses on China-Taiwan relations, U.S.-China relations, the Korean peninsula and Japan’s security. He is the author of, among other works, The Perils of Proximity: China-Japan Security Relations, A War Like No Other: The Truth About China's Challenge to America, Untying the Knot: Making Peace in the Taiwan Strait, and At Cross Purposes: U.S.-Taiwan Relations Since 1942.
Kent E. Calder is the Edwin O. Reischauer Professor and director of the Edwin O. Reischauer Center for East Asian Studies at the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies at the Johns Hopkins University. He is the author of Embattled Garrisons.