Head of Japan Research,
Coordinator of the Program on Pacific Islands,
Center for Asian Studies, Ifri
- Japanese foreign and defense policy
- Japan's domestic political debates
- International relations and geopolitics of the Indo-Pacific
- French and European approaches to the Indo-Pacific and Pacific Islands
Celine Pajon is Head of Japan Research at the Center for Asian Studies of the French Institute of International Relations (IFRI), Paris, where she has been a Research Fellow since 2008. She also leads the research program on Pacific Islands, set up in March 2022. She has also joined the Japan Program at Vrije Universiteit Brussels (VUB) as a Senior researcher since October 2020.
Céline is an International Research Fellow with the Canon Institute for Global Studies (CIGS) in Tokyo and was a visiting fellow with the Japan Institute for International Affairs (JIIA), Tokyo, back in 2016. Her area of expertise is Japan’s foreign and defense policy, as well as geostrategic dynamics of the Indo-Pacific area, including the position of France and Europe in the region, and their policies vis à vis the Pacific Islands. A graduate from the Institute of International and Development Studies in Geneva and Sciences Po Lyon, Céline also studied in Waseda University (Tokyo) and Osaka University.
She tweets @CelinePajon
Japan’s Africa policy: Back to basics in times of crisis Istituto per gli Studi di Politica Internazionale (ISPI), 16 septembre 2022
Addressing remotely the 8th Japan-Africa TICAD Summit held in Tunis between August 27th and 28th, Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida pledged $30 billion in public and private contributions to the African continent over the course of the next three years. This is a quite a remarkable...
Building Bridges over the Blue Pacific. Beyond Marine Protected Areas – A Europe-Oceania Cooperation Briefings de l’Ifri, July 22, 2022
The “new scramble for the Pacific” is characterized by a race for the control of maritime space and resources, oscillating between ocean grabbing and ocean commoning.
Laying the foundation for the Eighth Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD), Japanese Foreign Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi held talks on 28 March 2022 with ministers from 50 African nations. Hayashi expressed concerns that the COVID-19 pandemic and the war in Ukraine had...
Rapprochement in Times of Crisis: War in Ukraine and the EU-Japan Partnership CDCS Policy Brief, No. 9, Brussels School of Governance, 11 May 2022
The war in Ukraine has shaken the foundations of European security and of the global rules-based order. In many ways, Russia’s aggression has been a wake-up call for the EU, adding a sense of urgency to its ongoing transformation to becoming a stronger geopolitical actor, materialised by the...
Two Shades of Blue: Europe and the Pacific Islands, Strategic Partners in the Indo-Pacific Era Briefings de l’Ifri, April 21, 2022
In recent years, France and the European Union (EU) have published their respective Indo-Pacific strategies and a Ministerial Forum was held in Paris on February 22, 2022, bringing together over 60 foreign affairs ministers from European and Pacific Island countries.
AUKUS, the Indo-Pacific, and France’s Role: Fluctuat Nec Mergitur Russian International Affairs Council, September 22, 2021
The announcement of the new AUKUS alliance between Australia, the UK and the U.S. came as a shock for France.
France: the leading European power in the Indo-Pacific in James Bowen (Ed.), Europe’s Indo-Pacific Embrace: Global partnerships pour regional resilience, Perth US-Asia Center, Konrad Adenauer Shiftung, 16 September 2021
In May 2018, French President Emmanuel Macron delivered a speech at the Garden Island Naval Base in Sydney, Australia, where he outlined a French strategy for the Indo-Pacific. With this speech, France formally positioned itself as an ‘Indo-Pacific power’ and became the first European country...
A Region of Flashpoints? Security in the Indo-Pacific CSDS Policy Brief, 15/2021, September 16, 2021
The Indo-Pacific mega-region is home to the world’s most fluid, complex, and dangerous security environment. Lingering traditional security flashpoints (Taiwan Strait, North Korea, territorial disputes) are exacerbated by the rise of China and the US–China great power competition.
When dealing with China, Japan has assumed a position that protects its economic cooperation with Beijing, ensures Chinese aggressive strategies are deterred and guarantees its overall economic security: security of supply, autonomy in technological development, etc.
One year on, the announcement of the Australia-U.K.-U.S alliance has not been accompanied by any major changes to France’s Indo-Pacific defense strategy.
Japan, which began developmental programmes in the 1990s, has been eclipsed in recent years by China, now Africa’s leading trade partner.Pledge to invest US$30 billion on the continent includes a focus on training Africans to run their economy.
New Pacific alliance PBP to counter China’s influence will likely grow to include more European nations, say analysts
Partners in the Blue Pacific (PBP) is made up of US, UK, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, with the latter two expected to spearhead cooperation efforts. Some experts say France is already interested despite anger over Aukus security pact; the new PBP will become ‘multilateral rather than...
When Prime Minister Fumio Kishida becomes the first Japanese leader to attend a NATO leaders summit on Wednesday, he’ll be looking to stress the need for unity in preventing China from taking the “wrong lessons” from the Ukraine war as the bloc looks to expand its footprint in the Indo-Pacific...
Marine protected areas (MPAs) offer a solution for countries in the region to manage their maritime space. Access to scientific data is required to set MDA.
The United States is the linchpin of Taiwan’s security. Under Donald Trump’s presidency, as tensions with the People’s Republic of China grew, the US increasingly took steps to signal...
Alarmed by China’s rising power, its frictions with neighboring countries in the East and South China seas, allegations of human rights abuses in the Xinjiang region and crackdowns in Hong Kong, European countries are seeking to step up their involvement in the Indo-Pacific region.
Tokyo is ramping up international partnerships and investments to offer an alternative to Beijing’s signature foreign-policy project. For the first time in 15 years, Japan’s foreign minister last month paid a visit to the tiny island nation of Sri Lanka, shepherding a dozens-strong delegation...
Abe dissolves Japan Parliament ahead of snap elections quoted by Emily Tamkin in Foreign Policy, 28 September 2017
On Thursday, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe dissolved Japan’s parliament, the starting pistol for the snap elections he called a year early to get over a “national crisis.”