Benjamin Herscovitch

Based in Beijing, Benjamin’s research focuses on Australia’s regional foreign policy and Australia-China relations. He is currently working on a series of publications on the principles of liberal foreign policy and the challenges to the liberal world order.

Before joining CIS, Benjamin was a Desk Officer at the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, where he served on the Pakistan desk and worked on the department’s public diplomacy programs. He has a PhD on liberalism and federalism from the University of Sydney.

 


Featured Publication

  • The Fog of Foreign Policy: Why only ‘least bad’ options are available in Syria, Iraq and other global hotspots 18 May 2015 | Research Report 4
    Foreign policy is typically a blandly bipartisan affair in liberal democracies like Australia and the United States. Although different slogans are employed by left and right, major political parties support broadly liberal foreign policy goals. Both sides of politics want…...
    Foreign policy is typically a blandly bipartisan affair in liberal democracies like Australia and the United States. Although different slogans are employed by left and right, major political parties support broadly liberal foreign policy goals. Both sides of politics want…
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Media & Commentary

  • The threat of Chinas rise 30 July 2015 | China Spectator
    A tectonic shift in global power is under way, and it is provoking fear and loathing in Washington. The spectacular failure of US attempts to dissuade allies and partners from signing up to the US$100 billion Chinese-led Asian Infrastructure Investment…
    A tectonic shift in global power is under way, and it is provoking fear and loathing in Washington. The spectacular failure of US attempts to dissuade allies and partners from signing up to the US$100 billion Chinese-led Asian Infrastructure Investment…
    read more
  • Beijing will beat Washington in the South China Sea’s battle of wills 16 July 2015 | China Spectator
    At the opening of the seventh annual United States-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue earlier this week, US Vice-President Joe Biden launched yet another diplomatic broadside against Chinese territorial aggrandisement in the disputed South China Sea. In a thinly veiled rebuke…
    At the opening of the seventh annual United States-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue earlier this week, US Vice-President Joe Biden launched yet another diplomatic broadside against Chinese territorial aggrandisement in the disputed South China Sea. In a thinly veiled rebuke…
    read more
  • Beijing will beat Washington in the South China Sea’s battle of wills 26 June 2015 | China Spectator
    At the opening of the seventh annual United States-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue earlier this week, US Vice-President Joe Biden launched yet another diplomatic broadside against Chinese territorial aggrandisement in the disputed South China Sea. In a thinly veiled rebuke…
    At the opening of the seventh annual United States-China Strategic and Economic Dialogue earlier this week, US Vice-President Joe Biden launched yet another diplomatic broadside against Chinese territorial aggrandisement in the disputed South China Sea. In a thinly veiled rebuke…
    read more
  • Australia should stay out of the South China Sea 04 June 2015 | China Spectator
    Canberra looks set to wade into the South China Sea’s turbulent waters. As The Australian reported on Tuesday, Australia may soon fly a P-3 maritime reconnaissance aircraft near artificial Chinese islands in the South China Sea’s contested waters. Following a…
    Canberra looks set to wade into the South China Sea’s turbulent waters. As The Australian reported on Tuesday, Australia may soon fly a P-3 maritime reconnaissance aircraft near artificial Chinese islands in the South China Sea’s contested waters. Following a…
    read more
  • Australia should intervene in Syria to defeat Islamic State 27 May 2015 | The Australian
    Despite a rich civilizational inheritance stretching back millennia, the Syrian city of Palmyra is fast becoming a byword for savagery. Islamic State (IS) has already beheaded dozens of civilians and captured Assad regime soldiers, as well as children. It is…
    Despite a rich civilizational inheritance stretching back millennia, the Syrian city of Palmyra is fast becoming a byword for savagery. Islamic State (IS) has already beheaded dozens of civilians and captured Assad regime soldiers, as well as children. It is…
    read more

Publications

  • The rise of China’s imperial president 13 April 2015
    Chinese President Xi Jinping has emerged as the Middle Kingdom’s most powerful strongman since paramount leader Deng Xiaoping. In the two years following his ascension, Xi has further centralised political powers, muzzled dissidents and activists even more tightly, and pursued increasingly muscular foreign policy. Xi has also purged political rivals…...
    Chinese President Xi Jinping has emerged as the Middle Kingdom’s most powerful strongman since paramount leader Deng Xiaoping. In the two years following his ascension, Xi has further centralised political powers, muzzled dissidents and activists even more tightly, and pursued increasingly muscular foreign policy. Xi has also purged political rivals…
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  • Submission to the Defence White Paper 2015 04 November 2014
    Submission to the Defence White Paper 2015    
    Submission to the Defence White Paper 2015    
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  • Preserving Peace as China Rises II: Preparing for a Post-American Asian Order 01 September 2014 | FPA10
    With US leadership unable to guarantee peace and security in the Indo-Pacific this century, the region will need to transition to a balance of power system divided between China, the United States, India and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). To mitigate dangerously destabilising tensions between these great powers,…...
    With US leadership unable to guarantee peace and security in the Indo-Pacific this century, the region will need to transition to a balance of power system divided between China, the United States, India and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). To mitigate dangerously destabilising tensions between these great powers,…
    READ MORE
  • Budget 2014-15: Fiscal responsibility or savage cuts? 16 May 2014 | SP13
    The CIS analyses the Abbott government’s crucial first budget, including significant changes in the key policy areas of health, tax measures, welfare and education.        
    The CIS analyses the Abbott government’s crucial first budget, including significant changes in the key policy areas of health, tax measures, welfare and education.        
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  • Preserving Peace as China Rises I 13 March 2014 | FPA9
    Inventive foreign policy that can simultaneously reassure the Indo-Pacific’s established powers and accommodate Chinese ambitions is urgently needed. This report proposes three complementary strategies to safeguard stability in the Indo-Pacific: Prolong US leadership; protect the territorial status quo; and pursue a policy of ‘strategic ambiguity’ vis-à-vis territorial disputes. Dr Benjamin…...
    Inventive foreign policy that can simultaneously reassure the Indo-Pacific’s established powers and accommodate Chinese ambitions is urgently needed. This report proposes three complementary strategies to safeguard stability in the Indo-Pacific: Prolong US leadership; protect the territorial status quo; and pursue a policy of ‘strategic ambiguity’ vis-à-vis territorial disputes. Dr Benjamin…
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  • Submission to the Senate Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade References Committee 06 February 2014
    Submission to the Senate Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade References Committee    
    Submission to the Senate Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade References Committee    
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  • Accountable Authoritarianism: Why China’s Democratic Deficit Will Last 31 October 2013 | FPA8
    The Chinese Communist Party’s evolving model of ‘accountable authoritarianism’ is set to prove that prosperity need not produce democracy. By pursuing a moderate reformist agenda within the framework of one-party rule, the CCP will secure its grip on government and ensure that political decisions remain at least minimally responsive to…...
    The Chinese Communist Party’s evolving model of ‘accountable authoritarianism’ is set to prove that prosperity need not produce democracy. By pursuing a moderate reformist agenda within the framework of one-party rule, the CCP will secure its grip on government and ensure that political decisions remain at least minimally responsive to…
    READ MORE
  • Submission to the Senate Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Legislation Committee 01 August 2013
    Submission to the Senate Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Legislation Committee
    Submission to the Senate Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Legislation Committee
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  • A Fair Go: Fact or Fiction? 09 May 2013 | PM135
    The ‘fair go’ is a core Australian value. The idea that everyone should have the opportunity to improve their lot in life is a central element of Australia’s social contact and a touchstone for assessing public policy. But what exactly does it mean? And does Australia live up to this…...
    The ‘fair go’ is a core Australian value. The idea that everyone should have the opportunity to improve their lot in life is a central element of Australia’s social contact and a touchstone for assessing public policy. But what exactly does it mean? And does Australia live up to this…
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  • Australia and the Asian Ascendancy: Why Upskilling is Not Necessary to Reap the Rewards 19 February 2013 | IA137
    Australia’s Asian embrace: Australia’s exports to Asia are almost triple its exports to the rest of the world, and 7 out of Australia’s top 10 trading partners are in Asia. Exporting to Asia’s burgeoning middle-classes: With the number of middle-class consumers in Asia set to rise to 3.2 billion by…...
    Australia’s Asian embrace: Australia’s exports to Asia are almost triple its exports to the rest of the world, and 7 out of Australia’s top 10 trading partners are in Asia. Exporting to Asia’s burgeoning middle-classes: With the number of middle-class consumers in Asia set to rise to 3.2 billion by…
    READ MORE
  • After the Riot: the Meaning for Multicultural Australia 11 October 2012 | IA135
    Innocence of Muslims Among thinking Australians, these concerns are not a manifestation of inherent prejudice; they are prompted by legitimate questions. Australian society has a long track record of successfully integrating migrants from diverse backgrounds. But, as the Sydney riots demonstrated, something appears to have gone wrong with a sub-set…...
    Innocence of Muslims Among thinking Australians, these concerns are not a manifestation of inherent prejudice; they are prompted by legitimate questions. Australian society has a long track record of successfully integrating migrants from diverse backgrounds. But, as the Sydney riots demonstrated, something appears to have gone wrong with a sub-set…
    READ MORE
  • Australia's Asia Literacy Non-Problem 05 September 2012 | IA133
    New large-scale Asia literacy programs are not necessary for Australia to prosper in the Asian Century. There are approximately 2 billion English speakers globally, while English is spoken by about 800 million people in Asia and is widely used as an official language in the region. Multicultural Australia is also…...
    New large-scale Asia literacy programs are not necessary for Australia to prosper in the Asian Century. There are approximately 2 billion English speakers globally, while English is spoken by about 800 million people in Asia and is widely used as an official language in the region. Multicultural Australia is also…
    READ MORE