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Working Papers

Theorising Emerging Middle Power Behaviour in Global Governance: an Analytic Eclecticism Approach

Why do despite their relative middle position in the international system, the emerging middle powers such as Brazil, India, Indonesia South Africa, and Turkey tend to pursue a greater role in global governance? To what extent does their behaviour might or might not conform to a mainstream IR theory? Surprisingly, few studies try to systematically examine to extent to which mainstream International Relations (IR) theories namely structural realism, neoliberal institutionalism, critical theory, and constructivism explain this particular puzzle. This paper argues that despite having a merit in explaining the motivation of emerging middle powers, mainstream IR theories have failed in capturing the complexity of behaviour of emerging middle powers to play a greater role in global governance. There is a need for an analytic eclecticism to understand their motivation. This paper suggests that role theory can be a ground for analytic eclecticism which addresses both material and ideational motivation as well as the importance of agency and structure in motivating and constraining emerging middle powers’ behaviour in global governance.

Emerging Power and Democracy Promotion in the Regional Level: the Case of Indonesia

Why does Indonesia project democracy as a state identity through a democracy and human rights-promoting agenda in its foreign policy, even though it lacks of full acceptance of the democratic norm at home? Despite Indonesia’s increasing role in promoting democracy in at the regional level, this puzzle question ishas not been sufficiently addressed by the scholars of International Relations. Drawing heavily from the concept of state identity and role theory, this paper argues that Indonesia’s democratic identity is not a manifestation of a firmed and coherent political culture, which is more likely to be a semi-permanent feature of states as social constructivistsm might argue. Instead, Indonesia’s democratic identity is an enactment of a national role conception articulated by the foreign policy elites for in its quest for regional leadership and international prestige. To substantiate the this argument, the paper examines Indonesia’s strategies in promoting democracy and human rights in three case studies, namely Indonesia’s role in mainstreaming democracy and human rights in ASEAN’s principles and mechanisms, Indonesia’s democracy promotion in the Asia Pacific through the Bali Democracy Forum (BDF), and Indonesia’s democratic capacity building in Myanmar.

Indonesia’s Ambivalence Role in the Global Human Rights Governance

This article examines Indonesia’s reluctance in strengthening global human rights governance. Though Indonesia emerges as a state that strongly advocates the values and principles of human rights and democracy in the Asia Pacific region, its behavior in promoting these values in global level remains limited. In addressing the puzzle, this paper argues that despite its active role as a democracy and human rights promoter in the regional level, Indonesia still enacts its role as defender of developing countries solidarity in the global level particularly in the United Nations-related institution. This has made Indonesia to be more careful in its approach toward other developing countries which undergoing international scrutiny on their human rights condition. Furthermore, given Indonesia’s long unpleasant experience to protect its territorial integrity under UN scrutiny during authoritarian regime as well as its domestic issue regarding separatist movement in Papua have made Indonesia reluctant to strengthen the global governance dealing with human rights issues which heavily influenced by western discourse of human rights.