Research Activities

Research Projects

Lancang Mekong Cooperation Summit (2019_2_40_013)


Lancang-Mekong Cooperation (LMC) is one of the newest institutions involving the Mekong nations. LMC is a China-sponsored means of cooperation established in 2015. Its first summit was held in 2016. What is the Chinese motivation behind it? Does China expect a balance of power in the Mekong region or the maximization of economic benefits as discussed by realists or liberalists? Given that the most-critical feature of LMC is the exclusion of the ADB, U.S., Japan, and Indonesia, the Chinese attempt can be understood as an enterprise to assume exclusive leadership and to conduct prestige policy to enhance its international status. Understanding the Chinese motivation behind LMC would give us some fresh insight into its larger, exclusionary regionalist projects, such as the RCEP (which excludes the U.S.) and the AIIB (which excludes the U.S. and Japan).


April 2019 - March 2021

Members of the Research Project
[ Organizer ] Hamanaka Shintaro
[ Co-researcher ] Bunyavejchewin Poowin (Institute of East Asian Studies Thammasat University Research Fellow)
[ Co-researcher ] Chheang Vannarith (Cambodian Institute for Cooperation and PeaceSenior Fellow)
  • IDE Research Bulletin / Discussion Paper