The September issue of Pacific Affairs consists of four articles. In the issue’s opening article, “Persuading Pariahs: Myanmar’s Strategic Decision for Reform and Opening,” authors Jonathan Chow and Leif-Eric Easley weigh competing explanations for Myanmar’s strategic decision to reform and open, including its leaders’ fears of sudden regime change, socialization within the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), and the geopolitics of overreliance on China. They show how analysis of newly available materials and recent field interviews demonstrate how difficult it is for international actors to persuade a pariah state via sanctions or engagement. However, reliance on a more powerful neighbor can reach a point where costs to national autonomy become unacceptable, motivating reforms for the sake of economic and diplomatic diversification.
In his article, “Constraint without Coercion: Indirect Repression of Environmental Protest in Malaysia,” author Wei Lit Yew departs from the typical focus on coercion in non-democracies—the show and use of force—and analyzes its subtler yet under-explored counterpart in the form of non-coercive state actions. Case studies of the Broga anti-incinerator campaign and the Kuantan anti-rare earth plant protests in Malaysia demonstrate that these state-imposed constraints—specifically surveillance, judicial channeling, occupational repression, and administrative constraints—could indirectly disempower environmental resistance without resorting to violence. This article then completes the picture of repressive patterns under soft authoritarianism in Malaysia, suggesting that the authoritarian state bears a certain ambivalence toward non-political contention.
This is followed by Andrew Chubb’s piece, “Democracy Wall, Foreign Correspondents, and Deng Xiaoping.” Here the author identifies and explains the role of the Western media in Chinese politics in 1978–1979, when the establishment of Deng Xiaoping’s political authority coincided with the emergence of the Democracy Wall free speech movement on China’s streets, and the normalization of Sino-American relations. The author shows how both Deng and the activists of Democracy Wall used the international media for their own ends, though this worked out much better for the ascendant “paramount leader” than the movement that supported his rise. The case stands as a cautionary example for social activists attempting to harness the power of international media today.
Finally, in “Youth-Driven Tactics of Public Space Appropriation in Hanoi: The Case of Skateboarding and Parkour,” authors Stephanie Geertman, Danielle Labbé, Julie-Anne Boudreau, and Olivier Jacques draw on case studies of skateboarders and traceurs (practitioners of parkour) and analyze the tactics youths have deployed to claim public space in the Vietnamese capital since 2000. The study shows that these youths cope with variegated forms of control over public space characteristic of contemporary Hanoi through largely non-confrontational tactics. These finding contribute to discourses on everyday urbanism and social-political transformations in a post-socialist urban context, and to a better understanding of how youths engage with the city.
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.
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.
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.
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.