Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Australian National Centre for Ocean Resources and Security (ANCORS)


Seapower can be an ambiguous concept, difficult to understand and research, because it is composed of a number of factors across specialized areas, which mutually affect each other. It is a difficult duty for governments, which need national support to weave the components of seapower into a national engine for the sake of developing seapower in defence of national interests.

It can be said that alliance strategy can exert a strong influence on a state. In the Japan context, there are a lot of benefits and risks brought by an alliance. For sea powers, it may be no exaggeration to say that whether to contribute to maritime-oriented coalitions as a member nation seriously influences the fate of the nation. Each state is able to increase mutual trust thorough the operation of maritime coalitions. It would reduce the possibility of conflicts over maritime interests between member states and contribute to good order at sea. There are several external sources of instability for the Japanese islands from neighbouring countries. The location of Japan is on the frontline facing the rimland of the Eurasian Continent in which the great sea power and the great land power have to stand face to face. The United States, as the offshore balancer, has thus placed special emphasis on Japan and its geopolitical location.

The security frameworks of maritime coalitions that Japan joins or even leads are effective tools in the fight against various threats to the Japanese islands and its sea lines of communication (SLOC). The Japanese government is currently forming maritime coalitions through the activities of its navy and the Japan Coast Guard (JCG), but a fact that Japan is unable to exercise the right to collective security and places legal limitations on its maritime forces’ operations are major stumbling blocks in efforts to establish and develop the firm bond of maritime coalitions.