Sophie Boisseau du Rocher is a political scientist, graduated from Sciences Po Paris. She taught international relations, regional integration and Southeast Asian affairs at Sciences Po (Paris campus, Le Havre campus 1997 – 2010) and Chulalongkorn University (Bangkok 2010 – 2011). Dr Boisseau du Rocher has been pursuing her research on regionalism and regional integration in South-east and East Asia. She is currently working on the impact of China on current regional and consequently, global configurations. Sophie Boisseau du Rocher is also working on national challenges to political transition in the ASEAN member States.

Summary of Project:

ASEAN’s integrative / desintegrative processes

WP 5 is focusing on ASEAN as an institution, its place, role and functions on the process of Southeast Asia regional integration. Studying ASEAN, whether the organization will be comforted or weakened by centrifugal or centripetal forces within the region (of Southeast Asia) or how ASEAN can adjust to a new configuration of forces, is very important in this 50 years anniversary.

Sophie Boisseau du Rocher’s research project in this perspective will investigate China, the United States and the EU’s positions vis-à-vis the institution itself : what is their strategy, their diplomatic ambitions and supports in Jakarta ASEAN’s headquarters and how these strategies compete or converge in comforting regional integration ? A close study at each partner’s attitude and cooperation with the ASEAN institution and bureaucrats shows great divergences in terms of approach and vision, notwithstanding human and financial resources. And therefore, they explain varying results in terms of efficiency and influence.

Moreover, each major partner has different, and sometimes competing, visions on integration ; obviously, these visions have an impact on ASEAN’s frame, principles, mechanisms and tools. They placed ASEAN in a state of added confusion and permanent compromises with the potential to devitalize its own conceptualization of the regionalisation. More fundamentally, these competing views and interests on integration might lead to a counter-productive desintegration.