AAS 2018 Annual Conference

March 22-25 | Washington, D.C.

Marriott Wardman Park Hotel

Deadline for Receipt of All Proposals is August 8, 2017.

Deadline to submit post for this forum is July 31, 2017

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Asia's emerging "Great Game" in Africa?
Last Post 17 Jul 2017 10:57 AM by Rajesh Kumar. 1 Replies.
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Jackson MillerUser is Offline
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11 Jul 2017 10:33 AM
    Hi All,

    I am a Washington, DC-based analyst that specializes in mapping transnational organized criminal networks engaged in illicit natural resource trades (timber, ivory, minerals) across sub-Saharan Africa and Eastern Asia. For the past year, I've focused on interjecting more intersectional and qualitative analyses into the often polarizing discourse undergirding Sino-African affairs, a space where stakeholders are too tempted to rely on "objective" quantitative investment figures to conduct analysis.

    Yet, considering the launch of India and Japan's Asia-Africa Growth Corridor, I wonder if Asian political powers are (paradoxically) "carving up" Africa by connecting it with transnational supply chains?

    This panel seeks to critically engage with the geopolitical and cultural landscapes of Asian diasporas across the African continent, with a particular focus on the triangulation of Chinese, Indian, and Japanese subjects vis-a-vis current geopolitics

    The rationale of focusing on these three geographies lies in their divergent histories of engagement with the African continent:

    -The Indian subcontinent boasts thousands of years of cultural, religious and economic engagement with sub-saharan Africa. The extractive or exclusive institutions on the subcontinent induced South Asian migration to the African continent beg the question of how modern-day figures like PM Narenda Modi seek to engage and leverage this diaspora capital (along with flexible notions of citizenship and heritage) to achieve political aims.

    -While Chinese communities have populated the African continent for centuries, especially in Southern Africa, the combination of the Belt-Road Strategy, ancillary large-scale infrastructure investments, and influx of migration over the past few decades has enraptured an array of policymakers, researchers, and academics. How does the injection of Chinese human and financial capital destabilize the social location of established Asian diasporas on the continent, while at the same time alter broader racial and political paradigms?

    -Scholars, such as Deborah Brautingam, have noted the how strongly China's investment strategy in Africa mirrors Japan's investment strategies in Southeast Asia in the latter 20th century: forming joint ventures with local stakeholders in a way that allows for the potential of tech//knowledge transfer, along with prioritizing greenfield investment. Why hasn't Japan replicated this strategy in Africa? If it has, what might explain the delay? Further, how might the influx of Japanese financial capital, without the physical presence, inform localized perceptions of the Japanese from indigenous and diasporan subjects across the African continent?

    Ultimately, I am fascinated by the historical, political, and cultural logics of capital accumulation in diaspora, and I believe this roundtable will serve as a fruitful addition to the "border-crossing" segment of the 2018 Annual Conference

    I am seeking experts in Indian, Chinese, and Japanese diasporas who have demonstrated expertise in conducting multidisciplinary analysis across the social sciences.

    If interested in participating, please feel free to send your CV and an intro to jackson.miller482@gmail.com

    Thank you very much, and I look forward to hearing from you soon.


    Jackson P. Miller
    Rajesh KumarUser is Offline
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    New Member

    17 Jul 2017 10:57 AM
    Dear Jackson
    I am very much interested in participating in your panel. I am pasting my abstract below. I have a request. In case if you like my abstract, would you be willing to submit a travel grant request to AAS on my behalf? According to AAS rules, it is panel organiser who has to make a travel grant request on the behalf of participant. In case you are not interested, kindly let me know immediately, so I could try my luck with other panels. My email id is


    My abstract is pasted below

    Prisoner’s Dilemma and Sino-Indian Competition in African Continent

    The intense competition between India and China for African natural resources has made the two countries imprisoned in a typical case of Prisoner’s Dilemma. It is well known that the concept of Prisoner’s Dilemma was developed by game theorists working in Rand Corporation. This game entails that two robbers have robbed a bank and police have no evidence against either of them. Police separates them and each robber is told that the other robber has testified and he will become the government’s witness and thus go free. In this case, robbers believe that it is in their best interest to defect and spill the beans about the robbery. Both robbers testify against each other believing that it will offer them best pay-off. But the result is since now plenty of evidence has become available, both with go to prison. Similarly in international sphere, many states formulate strategies believing that those policies serve their best interests. But as in the situation of prisoner’s dilemma, they may actually be formulating policies which compromise their own interests. This paper proposes that India and China are stuck in a prisoner’s dilemma for African natural resources. There have been many instances when both countries submitted their bids for same oil fields. Due to keen competition between India and China, African countries exploited the situation and oil-blocks were sold for much higher prices than their actual values. Thus both countries, in order to adopt best strategies, actually ended up harming themselves. Oil-blocks are just an example. The same story has been repeated in many cases in African continent. The proposed paper argues that India and China need to break this prisoner’s dilemma and start cooperating instead of defecting. This paper will also make suggestions regarding what strategies can be adopted by both the countries for coming out of this Prisoner’s Dilemma
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