The Griffith Asia Institute has been awarded funding by The Japan Foundation to host the 2015 Australia-Japan Dialogue as part of the Institute’s successful Asian Century Futures Initiative.

The dialogue, to be held in Brisbane this December, will have the title ‘Policy Convergence and Divergence in Australia and Japan: Assessing Identity Shift within the Bi-Lateral Relationship’. The dialogue will examine the level of convergence and divergence between Australian and Japanese policy responses to contemporary international pressures.

“Australia and Japan’s similar political systems and values; strategic alignments; and foreign policy priorities, including the further development of trade and investment ties, provide a strong basis for gauging the level of external influence on domestic policy and debate in both countries.” said Associate Professor Michael Heazle of the Griffith Asia Institute.

“Comparing the Japanese experience with the Australian experience is significant because both countries face similar challenges in Asia with respect to geopolitical shifts triggered by the redefinition of the US-China relationship and economic forces resulting from multilateral initiatives, including the Trans-Pacific Partnership. How Japan redefines its own role in Asia and beyond will impact on the future of the Australia-Japan relationship, so it is critical to grasp the various dynamics that will shape that redefinition.”

This will be the fifth Griffith Asia Institute Dialogue held between the two countries.

Last year’s Dialogue, held in Tokyo, focused on the rapidly evolving security landscape in Asia. The outcomes paper from that event can be accessed online.