This report, authored by Philomena Murray, explores the challenges of building a stronger ‘community’ in the Asia-Pacific. It does so by using a ‘comparative regionalism’ approach, drawing upon the lessons of region-building efforts elsewhere.
Philomena argues in this paper for a greater emphasis in Australian foreign policy on community building in Asia. She outlines five strategies for policymakers: that Australia should re-position itself as a ‘fore-runner state’ in Asia, promote mediation and reconciliation in the region’s long-running conflicts, develop its soft-power and educational exchanges across the region, promote sound design principles for the future of regional architecture, and build a consensus among regional states about the difficult issues of membership and mandate for future regional institutions. Those strategies would be a longer-term recipe for better, more effective, regional institutions.