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The March issue of Pacific Affairs consists of four articles. It opens with, “The Politics of LGBT Policy Adoption: Shibuya Ward’s Same-Sex Partnership Certificates in the Japanese Context” by Yasuo Takao. Here the author examines the determinants of LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender) policy adoption in Shibuya, one of the twenty-three city wards of Tokyo, by taking an actor-specific approach to the first case of officially recognized same-sex partnership in Japan. His analysis demonstrates that the adoption of municipal LGBT policy does not necessarily reflect the redistribution of non-material resources, such as citizen values, but rather resembles the patterns of welfare politics.

In the next article, “The Politics of Pacific Ocean Conservation: Lessons from the Pitcairn Islands Marine Reserve,” authors Justin Alger and Peter Dauvergne analyze the rising importance since the mid-2000s of large marine protected areas (MPAs) as a new norm in global ocean conservation. They show how this norm emerged because of the success of a few transnational nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) in identifying politically feasible large MPAs, and then forming ad hoc domestic coalitions to lobby for them. They then demonstrate how this strategy was critical through a case study of the UK’s creation of the Pitcairn Islands Marine Reserve (835,000 km2) in 2015.

This is followed by “The Real Impact of Subsidies on the Film Industry (1970s–Present): Lessons from France and Korea,” by Jimmyn Parc and Patrick Messerlin. In their study, the authors compare the French film industry, which has benefited from massive subsidies, with the Korean film industry that has not enjoyed subsidies until recently, and demonstrate that subsidies are not a key factor to success, but rather unintentionally create significant negative consequences on the very film industries they are intended to support.

The issue closes with, “Settlement without Consensus: International Pressure and Domestic Backlash on the Comfort Women Problem in Japan” by Ji Young Kim and Jeyong Song. In their study, the authors begin by asking: What has shaped contemporary discourse on Japan’s comfort women issue? They then detail how, over the last twenty-five years, civic groups in both Japan and South Korea have made significant efforts to publicize the issue to the international community, hoping to narrow the disparity between the mainstream position of the international community and that of the Japanese government. But thus far, they point out, Japan’s official position has shown little change. To understand why this is so, the authors focus on the relationship between international pressure and the formation of Japan’s discourse on the comfort women issue, showing how outside pressure led to domestic backlash among conservatives in Japan, resulting in the failure to institutionalize apologetic discourse within Japanese society. The authors’ study provides important implications regarding how democratic countries can sometimes resist strong external pressure to conform to international norms.

In addition we also have  55 reviews of current books and film. Please visit our Current Issue page.



cover of journalMission Statement

Pacific Affairs is an interdisciplinary journal committed to advancing empirical and conceptual knowledge in the field of Asia Pacific-focussed area studies. We view area studies as combining serious commitment to original research on specific regions and countries in Asia and the Pacific with insights and analytical rigour derived from multiple disciplines and various theoretical perspectives.



2014 Journal Citation Report Impact Factorcover of journal

Impact Factor Score: .562 (22 out of 65 Area Studies journals) – cites in 2014 to articles published in 2012 and 2013.

5-Year Impact Factor Score: 0.855 (16 out of 65 Area Studies journals) – cites in 2014 to articles published from 2009 to 2013

Immediacy Index Score: 0.087 (23 out of 65 Area Studies journals) – cites in 2014 of articles published in 2014

Article Influence® Score: 0.451 (17 out of 65 Area Studies journals)

© 2015 Thomson Reuters, Social Science Citation Index (SSCI), Journal Citation Reports

Note: We maintain a sustained and in-depth intellectual and administrative interest in the various debates concerning the uses, meanings, and limits of bibliometric indexes such as the annual JCR reports. We list the information above not as an unthinking endorsement of the use of these indexes to define notions of “quality,” but as information that forms part of a larger set of ongoing attempts to map the patterns and understand the meanings of scholarly communications in the digital age. Although Pacific Affairs embraces careful and contextualized use of all bibliometric data, our view is that the 5-Year Impact Factor (regardless of our absolute and/or relative numbers) is likely the most significant measure, given that we aspire to publish articles that based on the depth of their empirical research and the clarity of arguments will ideally retain their relevance for at least five years after publication.



cover of journalAbout Us

Pacific Affairs is a peer-reviewed, independent, and interdisciplinary scholarly journal focussing on important current political, economic, and social issues throughout Asia and the Pacific. Each issue contains approximately five new articles and 40-45 book reviews. Published continuously since 1928 under the same name, Pacific Affairs has been located on the beautiful campus of the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada, since 1961. The journal is committed to providing to the scholarly community and the world at large high quality research on Asia and the Pacific that takes readers beyond the headlines and across multiple disciplines.

Publication of Pacific Affairs is generously supported by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, The University of British Columbia, and Simon Fraser University.


Indexingcover of journal

Pacific Affairs is indexed in the Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI), MasterFILE Premier, Public Affairs Information Service and PAIS ARCHIVE, International Bibliography of the Social Sciences, World Affairs Online, and Bibliography of Asian Studies. We are both indexed and have abstracts of articles appear in Web of Science, GEOBASE, Canadian Periodical Index, Academic Search Complete, CBCA Complete, Historical Abstracts, International Political Science Abstracts, America: History and Life, Public Administration and CSA Worldwide Political Science Abstracts. Ingenta is the electronic provider for our online subscriptions. Pacific Affairs was selected as one of the first journals to join the JSTOR archives at their inception and has a four-year moving wall.


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