Domestic motivation and the case of the East China Sea ADIZ: Diversion or mobilization?

Szu Chien Hsu, Hsiao Chi Hsu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


China's declaration of an air defense identification zone (ADIZ) in the East China Sea shocked the international community, and many explanations have been offered about the motivation behind it. We argue that domestic politics played a key role in the ADIZ policy. However, existing studies have not paid sufficient attention to decisionmakers' political motivation. To fill this gap, we explore two distinct models: the diversionary foreign policy model and the mobilization model. Both models focus on the linkage between the state leader's domestic political consideration and foreign policy behavior, but each has different theoretical and empirical implications. Our findings suggest that the mobilization model offers a better explanation of the motivation for China's move.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)455-480
Number of pages26
JournalAsian Perspective
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Jul 1


  • Air defense identification zone
  • Diaoyu/ Senkaku Islands
  • Diversion
  • East China Sea
  • Mobilization
  • Sino-Japanese relations

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Life-span and Life-course Studies


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