Defining China’s Identity

Written by Chen Jimin. In recent years, the development of Sino-US relations has increasingly concerned the international community. It can be explained by the growing importance of Sino-US relations, which have gone beyond the scope of bilateral relations to have global impact, and the inherent complexity of the relationship. The competitiveness in their relations has …

China’s strategic confusion in the South China Sea

Written by Nie Wenjuan. Since Xi’s ascendancy many observers have noted a growing Chinese assertiveness in the South China Sea (SCS). Among other developments, China has increased the size of some of the land features in the islands it controls and created completely new land features that had previously been submerged reefs. However, from China’s perspective, …

China as a responsible great power: Conform or reform?

Written by Rob Yates. It has long been established that great powers have a distinct status given to them through recognition by other members of international society. Such status recognition, however, is contingent upon exercising great power responsibilities. In the broadest terms, Hedley Bull outlined great power responsibilities as twofold: managing relations with each other …

‘Responsible Stakeholder’ with Chinese Characteristics

Written by Beverley Loke. In September 2005, Robert Zoellick urged China to become a ‘responsible stakeholder’ in the international system. The basic premise of his speech was that China should be more heavily invested in strengthening and sustaining the system from which it has benefited. This involved global stewardship: providing public goods, upholding existing norms …

What’s the matter with Chinese Think Tanks?

Written by Silvia Menegazzi. Think tanks are defined as non-state actors. As such they are usually independent of states, generally classified as advocacy-led, policy research organizations committed to research, analysis and, ultimately, political advisory. Such a view has started to be questioned in recent years, following the exponential growth of a think tank’ ‘industry’ outside …

The emergence of a new East Asian Economic Order?

Written by Luis Mah. The territorial disputes in the South China Sea and growing anxiety over China’s ongoing construction of artificial islands with ports, airstrips and helipads continue to make for pessimistic media headlines. Yet, as this security tension intensifies in the region, we are also witnessing the consolidation of an important phenomenon that has been …

China’s rise and ASEAN: A complex and evolving landscape

Written by Oliver Turner. It is often said that as a new power rises it becomes more assertive and uses its increasing capabilities to expand its influence and even its territory abroad. Europe’s long history of expansionism, as well as the United States’ colonisation of much of North America, lends support to these claims. Some …

China’s Imperial Past and Present

Written by Jon Chappell. Outside observers might raise an eyebrow when told that debates among American scholars about China’s eighteenth century development could lead to them being attacked as, amongst other things, ‘neo-imperialists’. Yet a recent article by leading Qing dynasty (1644-1912) historian Li Zhiting, a member of the PRC’s National Qing Dynasty History Compilation …

The return of the Taiwan issue to U.S.-China relations

Written by Richard C. Bush III. President Xi Jinping is likely to make Taiwan a major issue at his summit with President Obama. The island is having presidential and legislative elections in January. There is a good chance that the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), which China doesn’t like, will come back to power. Xi’s message to Obama …

In spite of many challenges, Obama-Xi summit will see modest progress

Written by Bates Gill. The enduring paradox of U.S.-China relations will be on full display this week in Washington in what will be one of the most important—and difficult—meetings between Presidents Barack Obama and Xi Jinping. Across so many dimensions of the relationship, the two countries have never been closer. Yet the underlying strategic foundation …