Started amidst the Covid-19 Pandemic, the U.S. – China Scholarly Exchange is a first step toward resuming scholastic dialogue between the two countries after recent historic lows in travel and communication. Dr. Scott Kennedy, Senior Adviser and Trustee Chair in Chinese Business and Economics at CSIS leads the U.S. contribution to the exchange, with his counterpart Professor Wang Jisi, Founding President of Peking University's Institute of International and Strategic Studies (IISS) and one of China’s leading authorities on U.S.-China relations.

The project is composed of written works, virtual communication, and most uniquely, three in-person visits in 2022. In February 2022, Professor Wang visited Washington, providing a much-needed perspective to American academics and policymakers. In September and October 2022, Dr. Kennedy became the first member of the Washington policy community to visit China since the pandemic, at the invitation of Peking University. After mandatory quarantine, Dr. Kennedy spent three weeks in Beijing and one week in Shanghai, meeting government officials, business leaders, universities, and experiencing life under China’s Zero-Covid policies. In November 2022, Professor Wang returned to Washington for a public event at CSIS to interview Dr. Kennedy on his China trip.

This exchange will culminate in a joint report issued by Peking University and CSIS on the lessons learned by Professor Wang and Dr. Kennedy from their travels, and recommendations for both countries going forward.

This project is made possible by generous support from the Henry Luce Foundation.


A Beijinger in Washington
Tuesday, February 22, 2022 9:00 am - 10:00 am

Peking University Professor Wang Jisi, one of very few Chinese policy experts who have visited Washington in the last two years, joined CSIS Trustee Chair Scott Kennedy for a rare in-person and public discussion about the arc of the U.S.-China relationship.

Remote Visualization

A Washingtonian in Beijing
Tuesday, November 15, 2022 4:30 pm - 5:30 pm

CSIS Trustee Chair Scott Kennedy, the first one from the Washington think tank community to visit China since the outbreak of the pandemic, was interviewed and engaged in discussion with Peking University Professor Wang Jisi on developments in domestic Chinese society, U.S.-China relations, and potential pathways to improving the bilateral relationship.

Remote Visualization


Scott Kennedy, “China Travelogue #2: Living with Zero-Covid,” CSIS Trustee China Hand Blog, December 13, 2022. 

Scott Kennedy, “China Travelogue Series #1: A Long, Strange Trip: Arrival and Quarantine,” CSIS Trustee China Hand Blog, November 2, 2022.

Media Coverage

Scott Kennedy, “China’s Neighbors Are Navigating COVID-19, Beijing, and Washington,” Foreign Policy, September 13, 2022.
Scott Kennedy, “Xi-Biden Meeting May Help End China’s Destructive Isolation,” Foreign Policy, November 14, 2022. 

“US Analyst Says Beijing Is ‘Pyongyang-Like’ Under China’s Covid Zero,” Bloomberg, October 24, 2022.

“US Expert on China Aims to ‘Crack Open’ Echo Chambers, Renew Relations,” South China Morning Post, October 10, 2022.

“Being there: American researchers extol benefits of returning to China,” South China Morning Post, November 27, 2022.