Australia-Japan-US strategic relations and Indo-Pacific security



22 February 2018


Law Lounge, New Law Building Eastern Avenue, The University of Sydney


Public event

The Indo-Pacific strategic landscape is becoming more challenging, driving greater security coordination between the United States and its regional allies. Australia and Japan are at the forefront of this group. As capable security partners that share a common vision for an open and rule-governed regional order, the two countries are strengthening their special strategic partnership and playing a more active role in collective security initiatives. From responding to maritime tensions in the East and South China Seas, to deepening defence interoperability and deterring grey-zone coercion, the United States, Australia, and Japan are already coordinating on a range of shared challenges.

There are, however, obstacles to address and underexplored avenues for further security cooperation. This public panel discussion looked at these important strategic trends, and featured international experts Dr Tomohiko Satake (Japan), Dr Lavina Lee (Australia), and Mr Lyle Morris (United States).


  • Tomohiko Satake

    Dr Tomohiko Satake is a Senior Fellow in the Defense Policy Division at the National Institute for Defense Studies (NIDS) in Tokyo. Dr Satake’s research interests include alliance studies, Asia-Pacific security, and Japanese security policies. He has published extensively on the US-Japan-Australia trilateral relationship. Dr Satake earned a B.A. and M.A. from Keio University, and a Ph.D. in international relations from the Australian National University.

  • Dr Lavina Lee
    Dr Lavina Lee
    Non-Resident Senior Fellow, United States Studies Centre

    Dr Lavina Lee is Non-Resident Fellow at the United States Studies Centre and a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Security Studies and Criminology at Macquarie University, Sydney. In 2020, the Defence Minister appointed Dr Lee to the Council of the Australian Strategic Policy Institute. She was previously a Director of the Institute for Regional Security. Prior to joining Macquarie University in 2007, she was a political risk consultant with Control Risks Group. 

  • Lyle Morris

    Lyle J. Morris is a senior policy analyst at the RAND Corporation, where he focuses on security developments in East and Southeast Asia. He has over ten years of experience researching and leading projects on Asia-Pacific security issues and has published recently on the rise of coast guards in East and Southeast Asia, maritime security in the Asia-Pacific, Chinese military modernisation, and Chinese engagement in Africa.

  • Ashley Townshend
    Ashley Townshend
    Non-Resident Senior Fellow, United States Studies Centre

    Ashley Townshend is a Non-Resident Senior Fellow at the United States Studies Centre and Senior Fellow for Indo-Pacific Security at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. He is the founding co-chair of the annual US-Australia Indo-Pacific Deterrence Dialogue and was the Director of Foreign Policy and Defence at the United States Studies Centre from June 2017 to June 2022.

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