Buchpublikationen

01. Juli 2012

Asiens Aufstieg aus europäischer Sicht

DGAP-Länderstudie empfiehlt neue Initiativen zur Vertiefung der Zusammenarbeit

Wie werden die Entwicklungen auf dem größten Kontinent in Europa wahrgenommen? Wie stellen sich die Europäer die künftige Zusammenarbeit mit Asien vor? Dazu bietet der Sammelband, basierend auf aktuellen Daten, ein detailliertes Bild. Die Autoren analysieren die Berichterstattung in den Medien und die öffentliche Meinung in acht EU-Ländern. Mit einer Public Diplomacy-Initiative und einer „Knowledge Community“ sollten beide Regionen ihre Beziehungen ausbauen.

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Launch Asia-Europe Public Diplomacy Initiative

Compared to the relative high importance given to bilateral affairs, there is a low awareness in Europe on regional and multilateral Asian affairs. In view of this gap, the Asia-Europe Public Diplomacy Initiative should address the need to raise the profile of Asian affairs from two vantage points by simultaneously promoting Asian regional and multilateral affairs in Europe and respective European affairs in Asia. Part of the new initiative could be the launch of the “Asia Year” in the EU and the “EU Year” in Asia (timing of these could be possibly linked to the ASEM bi-annual summits). This would offer interested ASEM stakeholders an opportunity to promote their images and assets to Asian and European publics. The business sector could consider supporting relevant parts of the initiative. The Asia-Europe Business Forum, the Asia-Europe Peoples’ Forum and ASEF may become driving forces of the initiative being involved in its organization and operational implementation.

Facilitate Asia-Europe News Media Partnerships and Exchanges

The news media are the most important providers of Asia-related information to European audiences. News media are the leading shapers of European perceptions of Asia. Yet, the European public’s interest in and demand for Asia-related news is not met by the European newsmakers, especially in the case of European television news. We suggest establishing a net of inter-regional news media partnerships and exchanges in order to address this imbalance. Such partnerships would allow for forging closer working relationships between European and Asian news media professionals. This could lead, for instance, to more indepth analyses of Asian affairs by European newsmakers and publication of news produced by Asian media partners in European news outlets.

The establishment of inter-regional media partnerships and exchanges would address two key obstacles in communicating modern Asia to European news audiences, namely the high cost of international news production and heavy dominance of European sources (domestic and regional) in Asia-related news. On the one hand, the partnerships and exchanges could help to reduce production costs as monetary constraints bode heavily on the quality and quantity of Asia coverage in Europe. On the other hand, the inclusion of Asian news sources would broaden the perspectives of Asia-related reportage which could possibly lead to a more comprehensive and diverse perception of Asia among the European news audiences and, ultimately, to a better understanding of the issues shaping Asia today. The initial stage of this initiative could involve the EU, ASEAN and interested ASEM stakeholders setting up an ASEM News Media Facilitation Fund, to support the establishment of the media partnerships and exchanges among a number of leading news outlets in Europe and Asia. In addition, ASEM organisers could consider more open formats for news media involvement during ASEM events. Correspondingly, ASEF should expand the number and scope of fora and opportunities for news media groups to meet and collaborate in an inter-regional framework, for instance back-to-back to ASEM events.

Market a wider ‘Asia’

European public perceptions and news media images of Asia are largely Sino-centric. We argue that an equation of Asia with China limits the Europeans’ awareness of a diverse present-day Asia and clouds the understanding of the complex internal dynamics of contemporary Asian affairs. In order to provide balance, Asian countries and regional organisations would need to become more proactive in raising their profiles in Europe. One of such trajectories could be communicating to Europeans the success stories of increasingly functional regional integration processes (e.g. ASEAN and ASEAN+3). This could be achieved through the marketing of the ASEAN Community and related efforts of region and identity building. Such a strategy should include the creation of strong regional symbols and the promotion of those easily recognisable symbols in Europe.

Invest in Asia-Europe Knowledge Community

The rising interest in, and public knowledge of, Asia and its actors in Europe opens up opportunities for ASEM members to proactively relate to the complex dynamics of Asian, European and Asia-Europe affairs. On a conceptual level, Asia and Europe need to share their epistemological strengths by linking and integrating the production and communication of knowledge. On a practical level, Asian and European stakeholders should embed their relations in a common, knowledge-based project, namely the Asia-Europe Knowledge Community. Here, the enlarging and strengthening of educational activities and research collaboration, as promoted by the ASEM Education Hub, the ASEM Education Secretariat and ASEF, on the primary, secondary and tertiary level of education is suggested to be the main focus. Investment in education and research is seen as the key to promote enhanced mutual understanding and development of the two regions’ peoples, which is a top priority in Asia-EU relations.

Weiteres Kapitel “Asia in the Eyes of Europe: Perceptions and Potentials” zum Herunterladen

Bibliografische Angaben

Asia in the Eyes of Europe, Images of a Rising Giant, DGAP-Schriften zur Internationalen Politik, NOMOS-Verlag, Juni 2012, 304 S.

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