Building a People-Oriented Security Community the ASEAN way
By Alan Collins
Routledge – 2012 – 192 pages
ASEAN has declared its intention to create a security community in Southeast Asia that is people-orientated. This book evaluates ASEAN’s progress, and in doing so examines three matters of concern.
The book firstly looks at the importance of constitutive norms to the workings of security communities, by identifying ASEAN’s constitutive norms and the extent to which they act as a help of hindrance in establishing a security community. It then moves on to how ASEAN has interpreted people-orientated as empowering civil society organisations to be community stakeholders. The book discusses the uncertainty between how ASEAN envisages their role, and the role they themselves expect to have. Civil society actors are seeking to influence what sort of community evolves and their ability to interact with the state elite is evaluated to determine what interpretation of people-oriented is likely to emerge. Thirdly, in order to make progress ASEAN has sought to achieve cooperation among its member states in functional areas. The book examines this interest in functional cooperation through case studies on human rights, HIV/AIDS and disaster management.
By discussing the notion of ASEAN being people-orientated, and how it engages with ‘the people’, the book provides important insights into what type of community ASEAN in building, as well as furthering our understanding on security communities more broadly.
1. Introduction 2. Dependable expectations of peaceful change 3. ASEAN’s Constitutive Norms 4. Norm Entrepreneurs, Community Plans of Action and the ASEAN Charter 5. Human Rights 6. HIV/AIDS 7. Disaster Management 8. Conclusion
Alan Collins is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Political and Cultural Studies at Swansea University, UK. His has written extensively on Southeast Asian security with a particular emphasis on non-traditional security, securitization and ASEAN.