Jour Fixe with Dr. Anja Jetschke, 15th February 2010

News from Feb 12, 2010


We are pleased to invite you to the next Jour Fixe presentation by Anja Jetschke. She will present the working paper "Is regional integration contagious? Diffusion, the European Union, and Asia". Osvaldo Saldias will be discussant.

The Jour Fixe begins at 6.00 pm (18.00 Uhr st) and takes place at Ihnestr. 26, Room 202.

Why do regional organizations establish institutions that they do not utilize? Why do they continually devise regional integration projects that they routinely fail to implement? More to the point, why has the Association of Southeast Asian Nations established a High Council in 1976 which was never called upon member states despite bilateral conflicts among them? Why have member states established an ASEAN parliament in 1979 to connect the parliaments of the member states, when these states provided the parliament with little discretion and were predominantly authoritarian at the time? And why have member states established an ASEAN Troika in 2000 to represent ASEAN externally, which they also have not utilized? In sum, what explains this accumulation of apparently dysfunctional institutions in ASEAN’s institutional structure? This paper makes two arguments: Conventional approaches in International Relations that either focus on the rational design of international institutions or on intersubjective norms fail to explain these phenomena because they do not take into consideration that states might set up regional institutions because this promises them international legitimacy. The paper offers a sociological institutionalist explanation for this phenomenon, without discounting other mechanisms of diffusion.