Taiwan's Upcoming Presidential Inauguration: A Conversation with Dr. Lauren Dickey

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In this episode of the China Power Podcast, Dr. Lauren Dickey joins us to discuss Taiwan’s upcoming inauguration of president-elect William Lai. Dr. Dickey dives into her predictions for Lai’s presidency and potential responses in the coming months from Beijing. She discusses what she thinks will be a continuation from Lai of his predecessor’s pragmatic approach in cross-Strait relations and that he will continue to seek stable footing with Beijing. Further, given the number of domestic issues China must currently contend with, Dr. Dickey explains it is unlikely China will make any majors moves towards a large-scale conflict in the near future; rather, she predicts Beijing will likely respond to the inauguration with familiar grey zone activity towards Taiwan. Dr. Dickey speaks to the divided legislature that Lai will face, explaining he will likely have to facilitate certain trade-offs with the KMT in order to ensure legislation is passed. Finally, she gives her prediction for the Lai administration’s defense priorities and what that will mean for the US-Taiwan defense relationship.

Dr. Lauren Dickey is currently the senior manager for geopolitical intelligence at Harman International Industries and a non-resident senior associate to the CSIS China Power Project. Previously, Lauren served as the senior advisor and acting director for Taiwan policy in the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD).  In this capacity, she led the development and implementation of all elements of the U.S.-Taiwan defense relationship for the DoD.  Prior to her position in the DoD, Lauren was a research scientist focused on Chinese military issues and China's evolving presence in the Indo-Pacific at the Center for Naval Analyses (CNA).

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Bonny Lin
Director, China Power Project and Senior Fellow, Asian Security
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Lauren Dickey
Senior Associate (Non-resident), China Power Project