Japan and the G7/8: 1975 to 2002

By Hugo Dobson | Go to book overview

7

Conclusions

As mentioned in the Introduction to this book, the summit provides a snapshot of over a quarter-century of international history and imposes a structure upon events that might otherwise appear to be inchoate. Thus, the G7/8 would appear to provide a highly resonant framework or case study for a number of further studies on the mechanisms of global governance and the functioning of concert diplomacy This is especially the case as a result of the US-led 'war on terrorism' in response to the terrorist attacks on the US of 11 September 2001 and the apparent marginalisation of the UN. It no longer appears fanciful to suggest a renaissance of both the G7/8 in the provision of global governance and related studies of its workings. The preceding chapters have contributed to our understanding by both describing Japan's role at the summit and analysing this twenty-eight-year history in order to establish the key actors and their chief motivating factors, shaped by norms. This chapter will adumbrate some of the broader themes in order to reiterate the power and resonance of this multilateral forum by suggesting the most important achievements of Japan's participation in the summit process, the styles of diplomacy employed and what the summit means to the Japanese government and its people.


Achievements

Two broad effects are immediately evident as a result of the Japanese government's participation in the summit since 1975. On the one hand, the summit process has impacted upon Japan's international relations insofar that '[t]he summit…has been largely responsible for bringing Japan into much closer consultation with North America and Europe' (Hunt and Owen 1984:659). On the other hand, it can also be argued that simply being invited to the summit in the first place and thereby being recognised as a major power was achievement enough for Japan. Ultimately, Japanese policymakers have gained access to the highest level of international diplomacy and have thereby been able to reinforce and supplement a predominantly bilateral foreign policy.

As regards the success of specific summits, as mentioned in Chapter 5, a number of individual summits can be pointed to. However, Japan's achievements should be regarded in terms of what was successful not only for the Japanese government and its people but also for the summit process specifically, and international society in

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Japan and the G7/8: 1975 to 2002
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Illustrations ix
  • Acknowledgements x
  • Abbreviations and Acronyms xii
  • Introduction 1
  • 1 - The First Cycle, 1975-81 13
  • 2 - The Second Cycle, 1982-8 46
  • 3 - The Third Cycle, 1989-95 78
  • 4 - The Fourth Cycle, 1996-2002 108
  • 5 - Actors 140
  • 6 - Norms 165
  • 7 - Conclusions 185
  • Appendix I 190
  • Glossary 195
  • Bibliography 197
  • Index 212
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