Global Political Economy, additional blind spots and the ‘US or Europe’ problem: lessons from East Asia

Author: Saori Shibata1
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  • 1 University of Sheffield, UK
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Attempts to broaden the fields of Global Political Economy (GPE) and Comparative Political Economy have proliferated over recent decades. This is reflected in the focus on ‘blind spots’, whereby we see a highlighting of understudied and underappreciated areas in International Political Economy (IPE)/GPE. While these areas undoubtedly require further study, it remains apparent that the examples and contexts through which ‘GPE’ and its ‘blind spots’ are studied remain overwhelmingly European and North American. Yet, general trends in the GPE, which are more commonly viewed as empirical manifestations in Europe and North America, nevertheless display divergences and differences that can only be fully appreciated when considered in different regional contexts. This article is, therefore, a call to extend the empirical contexts through which we understand the particular instantiations of general trends within the GPE, and in doing so to shift our attention towards the historically and spatially specific regional dynamics of the GPE as these have developed specifically in the case of East Asia.

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