new MEEUC Working Paper: Regional Identity and Belonging – Australia in ASEM

A new Working Paper has been released in the online MEEUC Working Paper Series:

Volume 3, Issue 3, June 2014

Regional Identity and Belonging: Australia’s Case in ASEM.  Commemorating 40 years of Australia-ASEAN Dialogue.

Naila Maier-Knapp, Centre for History and Economics, Magdalene College, University of Cambridge

Initial attempts of Australia to join the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) in the 1990s faced considerable opposition by Malaysia and other East Asian countries in pursuit of an East Asian Community. Considered ‘un-Asian’ and rather ‘Western’, Australia’s interest in joining ASEM as part of the ASEM Asian-Group raised various practical and ideological questions. Facilitated by the enlargement of the European ASEM group and the decade-long lobbying of Australian leaders, Australia was finally welcomed to join ASEM in 2009. This working paper is an attempt to make sense of Southeast Asia’s acceptance of Australia into ASEM and discuss the issue of Australia’s identity dilemma in the neighbourhood through the case of this new institutional site for Australian interaction with European and Asian leaders.


This online Series aims to showcase the work in these fields of both current and former staff, students and research/visiting fellows of MEEUC and Monash University. It provides an opportunity for scholars to receive feedback on work in progress, and most importantly, offers budding researchers exposure for their work.

The Editorial Board of the MEEUC Working Paper Series welcomes submissions from professors, fellows, PhD candidates and postgraduate students. Papers may come from a range of disciplines, including but not limited to, Arts, Business and Law. For more information on submissions, please visit our website or contact