David Reitemeier studied East Asian Politics at Ruhr- Universtiy Bochum and received his Master’s degree 2013. Since 2014 he is working at the Department for East Asian Studies as a Research Assistant.
Where did you study? What did you study? In which field are you working in?
I received my Master’s degree in East Asian Politics at Ruhr-University Bochum. During my education I also had the opportunity to study Chinese at the Beijing Foreign Studies University and the Tongji-University in Shanghai.
As it often happens in area studies, my field of interest lies at the intersection of several fields and disciplines. During my studies I tried to understand how Chinese politics work, and what role China’s distinct sociological, economic and historic characteristics play. In addition, I focused on the broader East Asian region, observing how China interacts with its neighbors, and how it influences the dynamics in the region. This led me to the field I’m currently working on, Chinese international political economy, focusing on China in Regional and Global Governance.
What are your main research interests?
My main research interests are Chinese politics and Chinese international political economy as well as Regional and Global Governance.
What are your current projects?
I’m currently working towards my PhD, with a thesis on China and Regional Economic Governance. The thesis focuses on explaining China’s involvement in regional institutions concerned with managing regional economic challenges, mostly the Chiang Mai Initiative and the ASEAN+3 Monetary Research Office. I’m trying to improve our understanding of China’s role in Regional Governance by taking into consideration the historical development of national institutions and their influence on state behavior at the regional level.
What led you to pursue this research?
The global financial crisis raised many questions concerning China’s role in managing future international challenges. China did not always behave as some traditional theories of international relations would lead us to expect. China will play an increasingly important role in Regional and Global Governance and it is important for us to better understand what influence it will have. In addition, the study of Chinese international political economy is an excellent topic to test the existing theoretical frameworks. With my research I hope to contribute to these debates.
How is your research unique?
In my research I’m taking a very detailed look at the national level and use the historical development of institutions to better explain developments at the regional and global level. I believe this perspective helps broadening our understanding of the underlying factors influencing state behavior in Global and Regional governance and it can also shed some light on how a more effective governance might be achieved.
How would you describe your work’s importance to an interested lay audience?
The global financial crisis is a good example for the challenges actors in Global and Regional Governance face today. Functioning governance mechanisms can be important tools to better deal with such challenges in the future. In the East Asian region however, historic animosities and power struggles play a huge role in shaping the regional dynamics and hamper the effectiveness of these governance mechanisms. Increasing our understanding of these hurdles regional cooperation faces might one day help with overcoming them.