© 2017

Maritime Security in East and Southeast Asia

Political Challenges in Asian Waters

  • Nicholas Tarling
  • Xin Chen
  • Addresses domestic debates within East and Southeast Asian countries on threats and safety

  • Discusses non-state security concerns in the Asian maritime domain and regional collaborative attempts to address them

  • Contextualizes current conflicts between China and her neighbors in the seas


About this book


This volume investigates the nature of threats facing, or perceived as facing, some of the key players involved in Asian maritime politics. The articles in this collection present case studies on Malaysia, Singapore, the Philippines, Thailand, Japan, China, and Southeast Asia as a whole and focus on domestic definitions of threats and conceptualisations of security. These studies map the differing understandings of danger in this region and explore how contending narratives of "threats" and "security" affect the national maritime security policy deliberations within the claimant countries of this region. Those interested in maritime security and management in Asia will find this collection an invaluable addition to the literature on this topic. 


Nationalism Maritime Security East Asian Politics Chinese Expansion Asian Economics

Editors and affiliations

  • Nicholas Tarling
    • 1
  • Xin Chen
    • 2
  1. 1.New Zealand Asia InstituteUniversity of AucklandAucklandNew Zealand
  2. 2.New Zealand Asia InstituteUniversity of AucklandAucklandNew Zealand

About the editors

Nicholas Tarling is Emeritus Professor of History at the University of Auckland and longstanding Fellow of the New Zealand Asia Institute. He has published more than 50 books and about 90 articles and is a renowned specialist in Southeast Asian history.

Xin Chen is a Political Scientist and Research Fellow at the New Zealand Asia Institute of the University of Auckland. Her research interests focus on East Asian regional affairs, Chinese politics, and China in East Asian regional integration.

Bibliographic information


“With historical nuance and insightful case studies, the authors offer a fascinating account of how maritime security is a contested notion not only between countries, but within nations themselves.  Essential reading for a deeper understanding of the elusive nature of maritime security cooperation in this region.” (Professor Alfred Oehlers, Daniel K. Inouye Asia-Pacific Center for Security Studies, USA)

 “As maritime security becomes paramount in the new geopolitics during the first half of the 21st century, this collection of case studies crucially add to our understanding of what it takes to make regional sea lanes safe from piracy and terrorism and from interstate tensions that could lead to conflict.” (Professor Thitinan Pongsudhirak, Institute of Security and International Studies, Chulalongkorn University)

“For the global economy, and the lives of much of humanity, security of the sea lanes of East and Southeast Asia is crucial.  This timely volume shows us what is at stake on a day-to-day basis, beyond the prevailing spotlight of South China Sea geopolitics.” (Professor Hugh Whittaker, School of Interdisciplinary Area Studies, University of Oxford)