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Soon-ok Shin

Soon-ok Shin is an MPhil/PhD candidate in the Department of Politics and International Studies and is supervised by Professor Richard Higgott and Dr. Chris Hughes. She holds a British Chevening Scholarship. Her research is to trace the relationship between East Asian regionalism and national identity. East Asia, generally, was considered as the Asia-Pacific Rim within the U.S. hegemony. She addresses that the 1997 Asian financial crises proposed the key question of not only regional identity in East Asia but also national identity in the countries which could in turn translate into regionalism in East Asia. Therefore, at the core of this research is a series of trace relationships between the national identity and its regional policies. The account focuses primarily on Korean context with the middle power theory. Korea’s identity, in past period, was just exogenously given in terms of Cold War concept and being the client in a patron-client relationship with the U.S. From the late 1990’s the Korean government has shown the self-image of the political willingness as a middle power that sought to unfreeze the structures of security tension in Korean peninsula which in turn influences regional policies for example Sunshine Policy and Northeast Asian Initiative.