Royal Institute for International Affairs

Archive Collection

Scope and Content

This collection of manuscripts comprises miscellaneous papers including embassy handouts, conference papers, correspondence, reports and speeches accumulated by the Far East Department of the Royal Institute of International Affairs, c 1926-1962. They address political and economic issues in the Far East and South East Asia including China, Japan, Korea and Formosa.

Administrative / Biographical History

Founded in 1920, the Royal Institute of International Affairs (also known as Chatham House) is an independent research and membership organisation working to promote the understanding of key international issues. The Institute promotes debate and research through meetings, conferences and publications. The Chatham House Rule, which is used around the world to allow for free speech and confidentiality at meetings, originated with the Royal Institute. The Institute is funded through grants, donations, membership subscriptions and revenue from the Institute's trading subsidiary, Chatham House Enterprises Ltd. The Institute has a presence in the United States of America, where the Chatham House Foundation works to promote Anglo-American relations.


Papers have been grouped according to subject matter (and assigned manuscript numbers): MS 186387 British Policy in the Far East and South East Asia (1943-1950) MS 186362 China, economic (1937-1953) MS 186361 China, political MS 186374 Far East and South East Asia, economic development (1949-1958) MS 186380 Formosa (1946-1960) MS 186377 General (1936-1962) MS 186370 Japan, economic (1939-1962) MS 186371 Japan, political (1929-1961) MS 186372 Korea (1938-1961) MS 186386 US policy in the Far East (1938-1951)

Conditions Governing Access


Acquisition Information

Donated in 1964

Other Finding Aids

Unpublished handlist

Separated Material

Associated Material held elsewhere: Records (1906-1960) held at Oxford University: Bodleian Library, Department of Western Manuscripts [ref. MSS Curtis; Eng hist b 224, c 776-877]; Miscellaneous papers including some records of the Foreign Research and Press Service (1936-1961) held at Imperial War Museum Department of Documents [ref. Webster]; Minutes and papers of the Committee on Reconstruction (1945) held at Cambridge University: Churchill Archives Centre [ref. 2/4/12]; Records (c 1920-1994) held at the Royal Institute of International Affairs [ref. Cook & Waller, Sources in contemporary British history, vol 1, 1994].

Conditions Governing Use

No publication without written permission. Apply to archivist in the first instance

Related Material

Related Collections at SOAS: Powell, Ifor Ball [ref. PP MS 26] Furnivall, John Sydenham [ref. PP MS 23] Pratt, John Thomas [ref. PP MS 5]

Geographical Names