Signaling Game of Collective Self-Defense in the U.S.-Japan Alliance

  • Shuhei KurizakiEmail author
Part of the The Political Economy of the Asia Pacific book series (PEAP)


What are the implications of collective self-defense for Japan’s security environment? This chapter considers invoking the right of collective self-defense as intervention into an armed conflict on behalf of an ally. Since the Japanese government’s reinterpretation of the constitutional constraint on collective self- defense is perceived by neighboring countries as a revelation of underlying militarism and expansionism, I analyze Japan’s decision on its constitutional constraints as a costly signal that Japan sends to deter the challenges against the U.S.-Japan alliance. The equilibrium analysis suggests that the manipulation of collective self-defense does not help Prime Minister Abe and his government achieve the security policy objectives that they claim invoking collective self- defense would deliver.


Alliance Collective self-defense Extended deterrence Signaling game U.S.-Japan Security Treaty 



I am grateful for the comments and discussion by Motoshi Suzuki, Atsushi Tago, Yukari Iwanami, Atsushi Ishida, Keisuke Iida, Akira, Okada, Daisuke Oyama, Yasushi Asako, and the seminar participants at the Workshop on Politics & Economics at Keio University in July 2014 and the Game Theory Workshop at Kyoto University in March 2015. Research assistance by Arisa Fukuoka is gratefully acknowledged.


  1. Calder, K. E. (2009). Pacific alliance: Reviving U.S.-Japan relations. New Haven: Yale University Press.Google Scholar
  2. Cho, I.-K., & Kreps, D. M. (1987, May). Signaling games and stable equilibria. Quarterly Journal of Economics, 102, 179–222.Google Scholar
  3. Christensen, T. J. (1999, Spring). China, the U.S.-Japan alliance, and the security dilemma in East Asia. International Security, 23, 49–80.Google Scholar
  4. Morrow, J. D. (1994, June). Alliances, credibility, and peacetime costs. Journal of Conflict Resolution, 38, 270–297.Google Scholar
  5. Smith, A. (1998, September). International crises and domestic politics. American Political Science Review, 92, 623–38.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Japan KK 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Political Science and EconomicsWaseda UniversityTokyoJapan

Personalised recommendations