1. bookVolume 7 (2017): Issue 1 (June 2017)
Journal Details
First Published
18 Jun 2013
Publication timeframe
2 times per year
Open Access

China’s OBOR as a Geo-Functional Institutionalist Project

Published Online: 08 Jul 2017
Volume & Issue: Volume 7 (2017) - Issue 1 (June 2017)
Page range: 7 - 23
Journal Details
First Published
18 Jun 2013
Publication timeframe
2 times per year

This study analyses the feasibility of China’s One Belt, One Road (OBOR) initiative from an institutionalist perspective. The initiative is undertaken as a ‘geo-functional institutionalist’ project, and this strengthens its feasibility. Firstly, the initiative aims to institutionalize a new international structure paralleling the existing Western-dominated one through which China could re-organize its position as an ‘agenda entrepreneur’ in the world without any clash with the West. Secondly, the initiative follows a functionalist strategy. It offers a ‘win-win’ functionalist framework without any hegemonic ambition; thus, the initiative attracts the attention of the rest of the world. China also follows a pure functionalist and bilateral/regional way to deal with the heterogeneity problem among the target countries. However, China’s institutionalization attempt might be isomorphic with the existing Western-dominated system in terms of its hegemonic structure due to the cognitive limitations in finding alternatives, and this might ruin the feasibility of the initiative.


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