• Offered by Department of International Relations
  • ANU College ANU College of Asia and the Pacific
  • Course subject Diplomacy
  • Areas of interest Diplomacy

The East Asian region is commonly conceived of as driven by power politics and constituted of strong states with weak societies. The political volatility that characterizes the region is accordingly often conceptualised along state-centric lines.

This course challenges these conventional understandings by examining a range of diplomatic issues and processes in which non-state actors, broadly defined, have exerted decisive influence and at times, been the source of inter-state friction.

Through surveying a variety of non-state actors across a range of diplomatic arenas, the course illuminates the conditions under which such actors emerge, the means by which they derive resources and influence, and the extent of their leverage over diplomatic interactions in East Asia.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

  1. Distinguish subtypes of non-state actors and assess their role and influence across a range of diplomatic issues in East Asia.
  2. Understand the structural contexts that govern the behaviour of non-state actors in East Asia, and the factors that serve to limit and enhance their diplomatic influence.
  3. Critically apply a range of theories and concepts pertaining to non-state actors.
  4. Provide nuanced correctives of state-centric assessments of diplomatic issues in East Asia.

Indicative Assessment

  1. Policy Brief (35) [LO 1,2]
  2. Op-Ed (response to a state-centric Commentary Piece) (25) [LO 4]
  3. Research Essay (40) [LO 3]

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10 Hours per week over 12 weeks, comprising 2 hours of seminar attendance and 8 hours of self study

Inherent Requirements

Not applicable

Requisite and Incompatibility

This course is incompatible with DIPL2001.

Prescribed Texts

None listed

Preliminary Reading

iona McConnell, Terri Moreau, Jason Dittmer, “Mimicking State Diplomacy: the Legitimizing Strategies of Unofficial Diplomacies,” Geoforum, Vol. 43, No. 4, 2012, pp. 804-814.

Teresa La Porte, “The Impact of ‘Intermestic’ Non-State Actors on the Conceptual Framework of Public Diplomacy,” The Hague Journal of Diplomacy, Vol. 7, No. 4, pp. 441-458.

Andrew Yeo, “Not in Anyone’s Backyard: The Emergence and Identity of a Transnational Anti-Base Network,” International Studies Quarterly, Vol. 53, No. 3, 2009, pp. 571-594.

Richard Samuels, “Kidnapping Politics in East Asia” Journal of East Asian Studies, Vol. 10, No. 3, 2010, pp. 363-395.

Hazel Smith, “‘Opening Up’ by Default: North Korea, the humanitarian community and the crisis,” The Pacific Review, Vol. 12, No. 3, 1999, pp. 453- 478.

Chien-Peng Chung & Jeongwon Bourdais Park, “Sub- and Trans-national Actors in South Korea’s Island Disputes: The Cases of Dokdo and Iodo,” Asian Affairs: An American Review, Vol. 44, No. 1, 2017, pp. 9-29.


Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

Commonwealth Support (CSP) Students
If you have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). More information about your student contribution amount for each course at Fees

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
6 units

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Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2022 $4200
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2022 $6000
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

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Second Semester

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
6640 24 Jul 2023 31 Jul 2023 31 Aug 2023 27 Oct 2023 In Person N/A
7642 24 Jul 2023 31 Jul 2023 31 Aug 2023 27 Oct 2023 Online N/A

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