Until now there have been few attempts to examine the different models of federalism appropriate in Asia, let alone to trace the extent to which these different perspectives are compatible, converging, or mutually influencing each other. This book redresses the balance by demonstrating the varieties of Asian federalism.
Federalism in Asia explores the range of theoretical perspectives that shape debates over federalism in general, and over territorial, multinational, hybrid, and asymmetric federalism in particular relation to Asia. The contributors share their understanding of how federal or quasi-federal institutions manage ethnic conflicts and accommodate differences, how democratization facilitates the development of federalism and how federalism facilitates or inhibits democratization in Asia. Their conclusion is that hybrid federalism or quasi-federalism is more prevalent in some Asian countries than others; and the need and potential for greater federalism in more Asian countries makes this sortie into this area worthwhile. While federalism is relevant to Asia, the working pattern of Asian federalism does not necessarily follow a Western style. Hybrid federal institutional design can be seen as an Asian strategy of managing ethnic conflicts through federal arrangements.
This unique book will be of great interest to a wide range of scholars and researchers who work on issues of federalism, political economy, public policy, ethnic relations, cultural diversity and democratization in the Asian region. Policymakers and activists dealing with issues of minority rights and ethnic conflict in the region, government officials and NGOs within Asia, and officials in international agencies and organizations will also find much to engage them.