Can the ‘China Solution’ Help the CCP Win Influence in Europe?VIEW EVENT DETAILS
NEW YORK, April 12, 2018 — Kristin Shi-Kupfer and Mareike Ohlberg of the Berlin-based think tank Mercator Institute for China Studies (MERICS), discuss China's ideological pluralism as well as its global ambitions, particularly in Europe, at Asia Society. They were joined by Orville Schell, the Arthur Ross director of the Center on U.S.-China Relations at Asia Society, Susan Shirk, chair of the 21st Century China Center at the University of California, San Diego School of Global Policy and Strategy, and Danny Russel, vice president of security and diplomacy at the Asia Society Policy Institute. (1 hr., 2 min.)
Unlike any other Chinese leader since the beginning of the reform era, President Xi Jinping has amassed enormous power and succeeded in promoting a unified national message aimed at strengthening the relationship between Chinese citizens and the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). Xi has written his name and philosophy into the CCP and state constitutions abolished presidential term limits, rallied support around his vision of the “China Dream,” and advanced the so-called “China Solution” as an alternative to market economies and liberal democracies.
Yet, despite persistent efforts to shape public discourse through online censorship, greater emphasis on ideological education, and other forms of propaganda, Chinese leadership has not managed to build broad-based consensus in Chinese society on China’s developmental model and global role.
Together with colleagues at the Berlin-based think tank Mercator Institute for China Studies (MERICS), Kristin Shi-Kupfer and Mareike Ohlberg recently published two reports, “Ideas and Ideologies Competing for China’s Future,” and “Authoritarian Advance: Responding to China’s Growing Political Influence in Europe” that analyze these developments in and outside of China.
Their research sheds light on the breadth of political views within Chinese society on China’s future role in the world. They will be joined by Arthur Ross Director Orville Schell, Chair of the 21st Century China Center at UCSD Susan Shirk, and Asia Society Policy Institute Diplomat in Residence Daniel Russel to discuss the links between China’s domestic ideological landscape and the People’s Republic of China’s efforts to sell its brand of economic development and authoritarian style of governance in Europe.
Mareike Ohlberg is a research associate at the Mercator Institute for China Studies, where she focuses on China’s subnational politics, official media policy, and developments in Hong Kong and Taiwan. Ohlberg holds a PhD in Chinese Studies from the University of Heidelberg and an MA from Columbia University. In her thesis, she analyzed changes in China’s global propaganda outreach since 1978. Prior to joining MERICS, Ohlberg spent a year as an An Wang Postdoctoral Fellow at the Fairbank Center for Chinese Studies at Harvard University and another year as a postdoctoral researcher at the Cheng Shewo Institute for Chinese Journalism at Shih Hsin University in Taipei.
Daniel Russel is Diplomat in Residence and Senior Fellow at the Asia Society Policy Institute. A career member of the Senior Foreign Service at the U.S. Department of State, he served until recently as the Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs. Prior to his appointment as Assistant Secretary, he served at the White House as Special Assistant to the President and National Security Council’s Senior Director for Asian Affairs. During his tenure there, he helped formulate President Obama’s strategic rebalance to the Asia-Pacific region.
Orville Schell is the Arthur Ross Director of the Center on U.S.-China Relations at Asia Society. He is a former professor and dean at the University of California, Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism. Schell is the author of 15 books, ten of them about China, and a contributor to numerous edited volumes, including The New Yorker, The Atlantic, The New York Times, The Nation, and The New York Review of Books. His most recent book, with John Delury, is Wealth and Power: China’s Long March to the 21st Century (Random House, 2013). Schell is the recipient of many prizes and fellowships, including a Guggenheim Fellowship, the Overseas Press Club Award, and the Harvard-Stanford Shorenstein Prize in Asian Journalism.
Kristin Shi-Kupfer heads research on politics, society, and the media at the Mercator Institute for China Studies. She is an expert on media policy, civil society, religious policy, and ideology in China. She previously worked as a research associate at the University of Freiburg’s Institute for Sinology. She earned her PhD from Ruhr University Bochum with a thesis on spiritual and religious groups in China after 1978. From 2007 to 2011, she was the China correspondent for the Austrian news magazine Profil, the German Protestant press agency epd (Protestant Press Service), and Südwest Presse in Beijing. Shi-Kupfer is a member of the expert committee of the German-Chinese platform on innovation under the Federal Ministry of Education and Research.
Susan Shirk is Chair of the 21st Century China Center and Research Professor at the University of California, San Diego School of Global Policy and Strategy. She served as Deputy Assistant Secretary of State (1997-2000), where she was responsible for U.S. policy toward China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Mongolia. She founded and continues to lead the Northeast Asia Cooperation Dialogue, an unofficial forum for discussions of security issues. Her books include China: Fragile Superpower and Changing Media, Changing China.
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