Why Study in
East Asia?
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& Curriculum
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For syllabus
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For itinerary
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Focus of the program

        Georgia Tech’s East Asia program examines the economic and political development of East Asia. It uses the concept of an “East Asian developmental state” and theories about how such a “developmental state” operates to examine the development of the “East Asian flock of geese” --- Japan (although the program does not visit Japan), South Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and China.   Intense classes on the East Asian development experience, theories ofthe a market-conforming but export-promoting, development-driven state,  are combined with the case studies of the economic and political development of the several East Asian countries.  Part of the “East Asian development model” includes the proposition that at a certain level of development economic and social changes will translate into political pressures and, ultimately, democratization.  We will examine how the process of democratization occurred in Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan, and ask (but not answer) the question of whether mainland China will ultimately --- as economic development continues --- follow the path of democratization.

The program entails extensive travel with stops in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou ("Canton"), Shenzhen and several smaller manufacturing centers in the Pearl River Delta, in the People's Republic of China, Hong Kong Special Administrative Region,  Kaohsiung and Taipei in Taiwan, Busan and Seoul in South Korea. The economic symbiosis between Taiwan and mainland China, and between Hong Kong and the Pearl River Delta will be examined, as will the role of modern maritime transportation as a key basis of the modern global economy. There will be frequent on-the-spot "mini lectures" by the professor about the history and politics associated with spots visited.

Dr John Garver

         The program director is Dr. John W. Garver, a tenured Professor in Georgia Tech’s Sam Nunn School of International Affairs and a well-known specialist on China’s foreign relations.  He has authored 8 books and over 100 journal articles on China’s foreign relations, has served on the editorial board of The China Quarterly, The Journal of Contemporary China, and Asian Security, and is a member of the National Committee on U.S.-China Relations.  He has testified before the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission of the U.S. Congress, and has consulted with various organs of the U.S. government.  He established Georgia Tech’s first China program in 1995, and directed the first three cycles of that program in 1996, 1998, and 2000.  He has lived, worked, and/or conducted research in various regions of China for a total of 6 years, and has traveled extensively throughout Eurasia. He served with the U.S. Army from 1969 to 1971 and speaks fluent Chinese. His wife is a professor of economics at Mercer University in Atlanta and specializes in Chinese and Asian economic development. Their two children are learning Chinese.