Welcome to the Asian Century. Except — welcome to what exactly? What makes the century ‘Asian’? When did it begin? Indeed, has it even begun and, if not, is it likely to? If it has happened, why and how did it do so? And is the Asian Century something the world should welcome, resist, regulate, ignore?
Scholars have long predicted the Asian Century. Some have boldly proclaimed that Asia’s rise will transform global law and politics; others have been more circumspect, even dismissive of such a possibility.
Such is the problem with predictions. Economies rise and decline. Political alliances and regional groupings shift. Technology changes. Tragedies strike. As Fidler observes:
In terms of time, centuries happen. In terms of history, centuries are made. The mere passage of time will not make the 21st century the Asian century in the history of international relations and international law.
The 2018 ALSA Conference invites scholars in Asian law and society to consider the role of law in shaping the Asian Century. Is law transforming Asian societies such that the region is the new centre of economic, political or social power or interest? Does Asian law offer a distinctive approach to regulation and rights worthy of emulation elsewhere? How far has law and society scholarship come to make sense of Asian law and regulation?
ALSA2018 also welcomes paper proposals on any topic concerning the relationship between law and society in Asia. Find out more about proposing a panel or a paper for the ALSA2018 conference.