Meeting the Challenges and Opportunities of China's Rise
October 10, 2006
In spite of the unmistakable importance of China and the challenges and opportunities its emergence presents to the United States, the two countries still struggle to establish confident, regularized, and effective communication between the policy communities in Washington, D.C., and Beijing.
This report reviews some of the current U.S.-China exchanges--between the executive and legislative branches of the two governments, between the policy communities based in the two nations’ respective “think tanks” and universities, and between other U.S. and Chinese policy actors in the private sector. Data and interview research suggest that in spite of greatly intensified bilateral activity between these two policy communities, many problems remain in the form, frequency, content, and outcomes of U.S.-China exchanges. As a result, the United States may not be as effective and astute in recognizing and addressing the challenges that China may pose or in responding to and leveraging opportunities that may arise in U.S.-China relations.
Given the increasing importance and complexity of the U.S.-China relationship, the level of ongoing exchanges between the policy communities on both sides, and the continuing gaps and difficulties that should be addressed, this report presents several recommendations that would be relatively simple to implement, cost little, and have near-term results.
Bates Gill holds the Freeman Chair in China Studies at CSIS. He previously served as senior fellow in Foreign Policy Studies and inaugural director of the Center for Northeast Asian Policy Studies at the Brookings Institution. Prior to that, he directed East Asia programs at the Center for Nonproliferation Studies at the Monterey Institute in California and at the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute in Sweden. He has also held the Fei Yiming Chair in Comparative Politics at the Johns Hopkins University Center for Chinese and American Studies in Nanjing, China.