ATAKA, Hiroaki

Programs and Languages

  • japanese|english|
  • japanese|english|


Critical International Relations Theory, International political Economy

Research Topic

My research interest lies in Critical International Relations theories. In particular, I research on critical approaches to international societies, as well as on the possibilities for a post-Western, Global IR. I critically reflect on the Anglo-American historical context in which the discipline developed, exploring ways to ground knowledge on plural historical narratives. Recent research includes deconstructing and transcending the Westphalian paradigm in IR, as well as the methodological and pedagogical issues in Global IR.

Specialized field: Critical theories of IR and IPE; Sociology of IR; Disciplinary history of IR; Comparative history of international systems; Critical geopolitics of East Asia; Critical Security Studies; Politics of neoliberalism

Message for Applicants

My seminar will cover debates on theories, history and issues under the broad banner of 'Critical Approaches to International Relations'. By 'critical', it is meant to not just gather information and take these at face value, but to engage in a debate on what it might mean for our understanding of the theory, history and issues of international relations. Anyone with a critical mind is highly welcome.

Advised Master’s Thesis (Last 5 years)

  • Symbols and the Other in Nationalism: The Empire of Japan and Nationalism in China and Japan
  • Effects of Anime as a tool of Japanese Cultural Diplomacy on perceptions of Japanese culture
  • Grasping “Space”―How Classical Geopolitics Complements Offensive Realism
  • Applying Soft Power: Representations of Taiwanese Identity and Sovereignty in Soft Power Materials
  • When the name of the play is “security”: Japan’s mass media and the rise of China. A Securitization Theory approach
  • Regional Integration: The Case of South Asia
  • Perceptions & Cognitive Factors of a Security Dilemma:Reactions to Japanese Collective Self-Defense in East Asia
  • Rereading Louis Althusser and Tosaka Jun Together: Refinement Through a Conversation on Nationalism in Japan
  • Rethinking R2P from a Postcolonial Lens: Israel-Palestine Conflict and the Gaps Between Framework of R2P and the Reality
  • Hiroaki Ataka. 2018. Has International Relations Theories Ended?: Looking at Reflexivity through Global IR. in The End of International Politics: Response from Japan. Kyoto: Nakanishiya Publishing.

  • Hiroaki Ataka. 2018. Temporal Assumptions in Global IR: A Critique, paper presented at The 3rd Afrasian International Symposium: Time, Ethics, and Global Affairs, Afrasian Research Centre, Ryukoku University, 20 January 2018.

  • Hiroaki Ataka. 2017. Resilience of Neoliberalism: The Performative Effects of Neoliberalism in Post-Crisis America. The Annuals of Japanese Political Science Association 2017 (1): 57-79.

  • Takahiro Yamada and Hiroaki Ataka. The Eternal Divide? The Curious Non-Growth of Theories in Japanese IR, paper presented at the Fifth Global International Studies Conference, College of Social Science, National Taiwan University, Taipei, 3 April 2017.

  • Norihisa Yamashita, Atsushi Shibasaki and Hiroaki Ataka. The Constraints of Change: Deconstructing the Westphalian Narrative in Theory and Practice, paper presented at the International Studies Association Annual Conference 2017, Baltimore Convention Center, Baltimore, 24 February 2017.

  • Yamashita, Norihisa, Hiroaki Ataka and Atsushi Shibasaki, eds. 2016. Deconstructing the Westphalian Discourse: International Relations as Historiography. Kyoto: Nakanishiya.

  • Ataka, Hiroaki. 2016. Geopolitics or Geobody Politics? Understanding the Rise of China and its Actions in the South China Sea. Asian Journal of Peacebuilding 4(1): 77-95.