Editorial We are now in the year of the Monkey, a year of excitement and innovation. Monkey years are often dramatic and see large-scale political change, and if you believe these things, it is predicted that we may see much political change and the forging of new alliances. Given the instability, we are seeing in the Middle East and large parts of Africa. Suspect that this is not a predication but a good probability. It is also over 700 years since Marco Polo started traveling eastwards and commented on Chinese and Indian civilizations and observed and recorded the vast amount of trade that was evident in Asia and moved along the Silk Road. He remarked that a stable system of government made this all work for the benefit of each society and that war invariably led to human suffering and mass migration and destruction. Little has changed except that the size of the Asian economies has become larger and the impact of war and conflict more psychologically impactful because of modern media, but the devastation on human life as tragic as ever. This is a general issue and reflects the vibrancy and range of material and research in the public affairs area. Researchers and practitioners represent the EU, Europe, North America, and Asia. We still have gaps in our knowledge geographically, particularly in understanding public affairs in China, India, Japan, and Korea; there has only been limited work on. The first
Editorial. Public affairs has grown from an industry and research base focused on North America and Europe to one reflecting the world and incorporating the growing consumer strength and development of Asia. When we launched this journal a decade ago, it was dominated by North American research and practice, reflecting much of the then existent economic and cultural hegemony. Increasingly, this was balanced by European contributions as the European Union evolved, and the UK lobbying and communications industry developed alongside its Commonwealth connected partners. This general issue reflects the new world with authors, contributing from Brazil, China, Ghana, Italy, Kenya, Korea, Pakistan, South Africa, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, the UK and the USA. It allows one to evaluate and assess similar issues in each region and state and the campaigns and policy development to aid clarity, accountability, good governance and transparency. Commentary to various papers covering China, Etc.
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