NCUSCR Interviews

By National Committee on U.S.-China Relations

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This series features brief discussions with leading China experts on a range of issues in the U.S.-China relationship, including domestic politics, foreign policy, economics, security, culture, the environment, and areas of global concern. For more interviews, videos, and links to events, visit our website: The National Committee on U.S.-China Relations is the leading nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that encourages understanding of China and the United States among citizens of both countries.

Episode Date
Agents of Subversion: The Fate of John T. Downey and the CIA’s Covert War in China

Agents of Subversion reconstructs the story of a botched mission into Manchuria, placing it in the context of a wider CIA campaign against China. In the winter of 1952, the CIA flew a covert mission into China to pick up an agent. One of the Americans on the mission, a recent Yale graduate named John T. Downey, ended up a prisoner in China for the next twenty years. The U.S. government kept the public in the dark about decades of covert activity directed against China while Downey languished in a Beijing prison and his mother lobbied desperately for his release. John Delury sheds new light on Mao’s campaigns to eliminate counterrevolutionaries and on his use of captive spies in diplomacy with the West.

In an interview conducted on January 25, 2023John Delury and Jerome Cohen discuss Downey’s story and its implication for today with Gina Tam.

0:00-2:11 introductions 

2:11-11:03 Who was John Downey? 

11:03-15:44 Cold War framework

15:44-23:16 What did it have to take for Downey’s release?

23:16-29:10 CIA activity in China

29:10- U.S.-China cooperation

About the speakers:

Read the transcript to this conversation 

Follow John Delury on Twitter: @JohnDelury

Follow Jerome Cohen on Twitter: @jeromeacohen

Follow Gina Tam on Twitter: @DGTam86

Subscribe to the National Committee on YouTube for video of this interview. Follow us on Twitter (@ncuscr) and Instagram (@ncuscr).

Feb 01, 2023
War and Peace in the Taiwan Strait

As tensions continue to rise between the People’s Republic of China and Taiwan, analysts and officials warn of a growing risk of military conflict, which could potentially draw in the United States. How worried should we be about a war in the Taiwan Strait?

Scott L. Kastner sheds new light on the prospects for cross-strait military conflict in his new book, War and Peace in the Taiwan Strait. He examines several key regional trends that have complex implications for stability, including deepening economic integration, the shifting balance of military power, uncertainty about the future of U.S. commitment, and domestic political changes in both the PRC and Taiwan. While the risks of conflict are real, they should not be exaggerated.

In an interview conducted by Jessica Chen Weiss on January 11, 2023, Scott Kastner argues that several distinct pathways could lead to the breakout of hostilities, yet war is not inevitable.

0:00-2:05 Introductions 

2:05-7:45 Background on Taiwan

7:45-14:42 How can we avoid conflict while navigating U.S.-China relations?

14:42-20:08 The possibility of unification 

20:08-25:00 What are Beijing’s challenges?

25:00-28:54 What is the future of Taiwan?

28:54-Avoiding tragedy

About the speakers:

Find the transcript to this conversation here

Follow Jessica Chen Wiess on Twitter: @jessicacweiss

Subscribe to the National Committee on YouTube for video of this interview. Follow us on Twitter (@ncuscr) and Instagram (@ncuscr).

Jan 18, 2023
Material Contradictions in Mao’s China

The growth of markets and consumerism in China’s post-Mao era of political and economic reform is familiar. The Mao period (1949–1976), by contrast, a time of scarcity, appears to have had little material culture. In reality, people attributed great meaning to materials and objects, often precisely because they were rare, expensive, and difficult to obtain. Material Contradictions in Mao’s China, essays on art, cinema, culture, performance, and more, explores the paradox of material culture under Chinese Communist Party rule and illustrates how central material culture was to social and economic construction of the country and to projections of a socialist utopia within reach of every person, if only they worked hard enough.

In an interview conducted on December 9, 2022Material Contradictions co-editors Jennifer Altehenger and Denise Ho, in conversation with Philip Tinari, discuss the significance of physical objects during the Mao period.

0:00-2:22 Introductions 

2:22-8:27 Material Contradictions Under Mao

8:27- 17:28 Objects, scarcity, and abundance

17:28-25:45 The political and the commodity

25:45- Agency in consumerism

About the speaker:

Follow Philip Tinati on Twitter: @philiptinari

Subscribe to the National Committee on YouTube for video of this interview. Follow us on Twitter (@ncuscr) and Instagram (@ncuscr).

Jan 03, 2023
Accidental Conflict: America, China, and the Clash of False Narratives

Stephen Roach’s new book, Accidental Conflict: America, China, and the Clash of False Narratives, examines the ominous trajectory of conflict escalation between the United States and China and offers suggestions for resolution. In just four years, two countries have entered a trade war, a tech war, and perhaps a new Cold War. This conflict between the world’s two most powerful nations would not have happened but for an unnecessary clash of false narratives. The United States falsely blames its trade and technology threats on China yet overlooks its shaky saving foundation. China falsely blames its growth challenges on America’s alleged containment of market-based socialism, ignoring its failed economic rebalancing.

In an interview conducted on December 19, 2022, Stephen Roach argues that much of the rhetoric on both sides is dangerously misguided, more a reflection of each nation’s fears and vulnerabilities than a reasonable assessment of the risks they face.

0:00-3:35 U.S.-China uncomfortable codependency

3:35-10:23 False narratives of technology and IP theft

10:23-17:36 Bipartisan rhetoric and economics

17:36-23:48 the trajectory of U.S.-China trade

23:48-26:15 Does China need the U.S.?

26:15-30:35 Economic competition

30:35-Conflict resolutions

About the speaker:

Follow Stephen Roach on Twitter: @SRoach_econ

Subscribe to the National Committee on YouTube for video of this interview. Follow us on Twitter (@ncuscr) and Instagram (@ncuscr).

Dec 21, 2022
CHINA Town Hall: Jon M. Huntsman Jr.

Former Ambassador to China, Russia, and Singapore Jon M. Huntsman Jr. was the featured speaker for CHINA Town Hall 2022, a national conversation on how the U.S.-China relationship affects our communities. From supply chains to national security, new technologies to climate change, the future of both countries will be determined by their relations with one another and the global community.

The National Committee held a nationwide virtual conversation on Wednesday, November 16 at 7:00 p.m. EST, including Q&A, with a leading authority on foreign policy. As one of few Americans to personally know Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin, Ambassador Huntsman discussed the ways America can cooperate and compete with China, as both countries confront the most critical issues of the 21st century.

About the speaker:

Subscribe to the National Committee on YouTube for video of this interview. Follow us on Twitter (@ncuscr) and Instagram (@ncuscr).

Nov 21, 2022
Climate (in)Action Amidst U.S.- China Tensions

For much of 2022, the entire planet has been struggling to cope with extreme weather events, ranging from brutal heatwaves and severe droughts in some regions to record rainfall and catastrophic flooding in others.

Despite this, in early August, Beijing suspended ongoing U.S.-China talks on climate change in response to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan. While some climate experts have argued that what matters most in the fight to reduce greenhouse gas emissions is for the United States and China to take action domestically, the suspension of talks represents a shift in the effort to shield the climate agenda from geopolitics and has implications for the ability of each country, and the world, to meet essential reduction targets.

In conversation with Alex Wang on November 1, 2022, Michael Davidson and Joanna Lewis discuss the significance of the downturn in U.S.-China relations on multilateral climate action.

2:22 How will U.S.-China tensions affect COP27?

6:24 How important is U.S.-China cooperation to global climate action?

9:18 Can the U.S. and China cooperate after COP27?

15:00 Will U.S.-China competition benefit or harm climate action efforts?

25:30 How can the U.S. support domestic climate action initiatives?

30:38 Why is energy security so important?

About the speakers: 

Follow Michael Davidson on Twitter:  @east_winds

Follow Joanna Lewis on Twitter: @JoannaILewis

Follow Alex Wang on Twitter: @greenlawchina

Subscribe to the National Committee on YouTube for video of this interview. Follow us on Twitter (@ncuscr) and Instagram (@ncuscr).

Nov 09, 2022
Trafficking Data: How China is Winning the Battle for Digital Sovereignty

In Trafficking Data, Aynne Kokas examines how technology firms in the two largest economies in the world, the United States and China, exploit government policy (and the lack thereof) to gather information on citizens, putting American national security at risk. She argues that U.S. government leadership failures, Silicon Valley’s disruption preoccupation, and Wall Street’s addiction to growth have fueled China’s technological gold rush. Drawing on extensive fieldwork in the two countries and numerous corporate and policy documents, Trafficking Data explains how China is fast becoming the global leader in internet governance and policy, and thus of the data that defines our public and private lives.

In an interview conducted on October 11, 2022, Aynne Kokas, in conversation with Silvia Lindtner, argues that American complacency provides Chinese firms the opportunity to gather data in the United States and send it back to China, and by extension, to the Chinese government.

0:00 Introductions

2:04 China’s technological advances and geopolitical power

9:08 United States and China as digitized nations

16:38 Population biometric data and Zero-COVID

20:38 Can data science map Chinese society during the COVID-19 pandemic?

About the speakers:

Follow Aynne Kokas on Twitter: @AynneKokas

Follow Silvia Lindtner on Twitter: @yunnia

Subscribe to the National Committee on YouTube for video of this interview. Follow us on Twitter (@ncuscr) and Instagram (@ncuscr).

Oct 25, 2022
Texture on Taiwan: Deciphering Asia's Most Complex Hotspot | Jessica Drun, Lev Nachman, Sara Newland

In the wake of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s high profile visit to Taiwan in August, public focus on the island has reached a crescendo as Chinese military maneuvers and government rhetoric continue to escalate. How has Taiwan dealt with the increased volatility? How has the war in Ukraine affected China’s decision-making going forward? Are Taiwan’s global economic ties and critical role in technology supply chains strong enough to help deter a wider conflict? Most importantly, what does it all mean for ordinary Taiwanese?

In a conversation moderated by Sara Newland on October 12, 2022, leading Taiwan experts Jessica Drun and Lev Nachman explore Taiwan’s complex dynamics and implications for the United States and the U.S.-China relationship.

2:07 How did Taiwanese respond to Speaker Nancy Pelosi's visit?

9:53 Is the war in Ukraine shifting behavior in Taiwan?

14:08 What's happening with the Taiwanese elections in 2022 and 2024?

18:23 What is the future of the KMT?

22:21 How has Taiwan capitalized on recent soft power wins?

26:38 What should people know about Taiwan?

About the speakers:

Follow Jessica Drun on Twitter: @jessicadrun

Follow Lev Nachman on Twitter: @lnachman32

Follow Sara Newland on Twitter: @NewlandSara

Subscribe to the National Committee on YouTube for video of this interview. Follow us on Twitter (@ncuscr) and Instagram (@ncuscr).

Oct 20, 2022
Overreach: How China Derailed its Peaceful Rise

For several decades after “reform and opening” began in 1978, China’s leaders adopted a restrained approach to foreign policy, assuring the world of its peaceful intentions. Then, as Susan Shirk argues in her latest book, Overreach: How China Derailed its Peaceful Rise, China went from fragile superpower to global heavyweight, threatening Taiwan and its neighbors in the South China Sea, tightening its grip on Hong Kong, and openly challenging the United States for preeminence economically, technologically, and militarily.

In an interview conducted on October 13, 2022, Susan Shirk urges the United States and other countries to respond to China’s overreach with restraint. Understanding the domestic roots of China’s actions will enable the world to avoid the mistakes that could lead to war.

0:00 Introduction

6:05 How is China responding to changes in society?

11:13 The relationship between Beijing, Taiwan, and overseas

18:17 Confucius Institutes as symbols

19:53 Xi Jinping, popularity, and Zero-COVID

26:20 U.S. position on China

About the speaker:

Follow Susan Shirk on Twitter: @SusanShirk1

Subscribe to the National Committee on YouTube for video of this interview. Follow us on Twitter (@ncuscr) and Instagram (@ncuscr).

Oct 17, 2022
Semiconductors and U.S.-China Relations

Semiconductors have become a critical policy issue around the world, making news because of their importance for everything from cellphones to nuclear weapons, as supply chain bottlenecks and political confrontations drive up scarcity and price. Global companies like TSMC and Huawei face difficult operating landscapes as they seek greater regulatory harmonization and clarity. What role do semiconductors play in the relationships among the United States, China, and Taiwan?

Technology policy expert Paul Triolo joined National Committee President Stephen Orlins for an interview conducted on September 30, 2022, to examine the complex geopolitical tensions surrounding the global semiconductor industry, its role in the U.S.-China relationship, and potential ways forward for the United States and China.

0:00 Introduction

1:43 Why are semiconductors important?

4:44 Will China's semiconductor industry succeed?

9:36 U.S. response and dependence on Taiwan

16:09 Is the CHIPS Act good policy?

20:24 Restrictions, competition, and supply chain

About the speaker:

Follow Paul Triolo on Twitter: @pstAsiatech

Subscribe to the National Committee on YouTube for video of this interview. Follow us on Twitter (@ncuscr) and Instagram (@ncuscr).

Oct 11, 2022
The China Questions 2: Critical Insights into U.S.-China Relations

For decades Americans have described China as a rising power. That description no longer fits: China has already risen. What does this mean for the U.S.-China relationship, for the global economy, and for international security? Covering security, economics, military development, climate change, public health, science and technology, education, and Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Xinjiang, the essays in The China Questions 2 look at key sites of friction and potential areas for collaboration.

In an interview conducted on September 21, 2022China Questions 2 co-editors Maria Adele Carrai and Michael Szonyi argue that we are not facing Cold War 2.0, but rather a complex mix of conflict, competition, and cooperation that must be understood in the domestic realities of the United States and China, as well as the international context.

0:00-2:51 Introduction

2:51-10 Key questions and accessibility 

10:00-15:13 Chinese constructive engagement 

15:13-20:12 U.S. economic involvement and revisionist powers

20:13-24:07 Has constructive engagement failed?

24:07-36:11The China Questions 2

About the speakers:

Follow Maria Adele Carrai on Twitter: @adele_carrai

Follow Michael Szonyi on Twitter: @MichaelSzonyi

Subscribe to the National Committee on YouTube for video of this interview. Follow us on Twitter (@ncuscr) and Instagram (@ncuscr).


Oct 03, 2022
Power and Restraint in China’s Rise

How does restraint in Chinese statecraft challenge the standard narrative about rising powers’ behavior? Conventional wisdom holds that China’s rise is disrupting the global balance of power in unpredictable ways. However, China has often deferred to the consensus of smaller neighboring countries on regional security. In Power and Restraint in China’s Rise (Columbia University Press), Chin-Hao Huang argues that China’s aspirations for legitimacy and acceptance provide a rationale for refraining from coercive measures. His findings show why paying attention to the targets of Chinese power matters and what the future of engagement with China might look like.

In a conversation with Carl Minzner conducted on September 16, 2022, Chin-Hao Huang explains why China considers the views and interests of small states, and how collective action can induce change in its behavior.

0:00-2:51 Introduction
2:51-10 Key questions and accessibility
10:00-15:13 Chinese constructive engagement
15:13-20:12 U.S. economic involvement and revisionist powers
20:13-24:07 Has constructive engagement failed?
24:07-36:11The China Questions 2

About the speakers:

Follow Carl Minzner on Twitter: @CarlMinzner

Subscribe to the National Committee on YouTube for video of this interview. Follow us on Twitter (@ncuscr) and Instagram (@ncuscr).

Sep 28, 2022
China’s Next Act: How Sustainability and Technology are Reshaping China’s Rise and the World’s Future

Following decades of growth and development, Chinese officials, businesses, and institutions now play a critical role in every major global issue. The challenges posed by climate change, pandemics, and emerging technologies make dealing with the Chinese state, its firms, and other institutions more complex and more critical than ever before. In China’s Next Act: How Sustainability and Technology are Reshaping China’s Rise and the World’s Future (Oxford University Press), Scott Moore argues that none of these increasingly pressing, shared global challenges can be tackled without China and, as a result, that the world must re-envision China’s rise and global role in in terms of sustainability and technology.

In conversation with Angel Hsu on September 15, 2022, Dr. Moore explores China’s part to play in tackling shared ecological and technological challenges.

1:51-6:14 Why now? U.S.-China scientific collaboration or rivalry?

6:14-10:30 Cooperation vs. competition

10:30-14:00 Climate and clean energy

14:00-20:22 Can we cooperate with China on climate policy?

20:22-24:45 Chinese innovation

24:45-31:04 How to reengage with Chinese counterparts

About the speakers:

Follow Scott Moore on Twitter: @water_futures

Follow Angel Hsu on Twitter: @ecoangelhsu

Subscribe to the National Committee on YouTube for video of this interview. Follow us on Twitter (@ncuscr) and Instagram (@ncuscr).

Sep 22, 2022
China’s Rise in the Global South: The Middle East, Africa, and Beijing’s Alternative World Order | Dawn Murphy, Lina Benabdallah

As China and the United States increasingly compete for power in key areas of U.S. influence, great power conflict looms. China’s Rise in the Global South examines China’s behavior as a rising power in two key global south regions: the Middle East and Sub-Saharan Africa. Dawn Murphy compares and analyzes thirty years of China’s interactions with these regions in several areas: politics, economics, foreign aid, and military. From the Belt and Road Initiative to the founding of new cooperation forums and special envoys, Dr. Murphy’s book offers an in-depth look at China’s foreign policy approach to the countries it considers its partners in South-South cooperation.

In a conversation with Lina Benabdallah held on August 19, 2022, Dawn C. Murphy argues that China is constructing an alternative international order.

0:00- 3:33  Introduction

3:33-7:50 China’s Alternative World Order

7:50-17:45 China in the Middle East and Africa

17:45-25:45 Chinese-Global South mediation and diplomacy

25:45- 30:08 China studies during COVID

30:08- Economic slowdown

About the speakers:

Follow Lina Benabdallah on Twitter: @LBenabdallah

Follow Dawn Murphy on Twitter: @DawnMurphyChina

Subscribe to the National Committee on YouTube for video of this interview. Follow us on Twitter (@ncuscr) and Instagram (@ncuscr).

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this interview are those of the author and do not reflect the official policy or position of the National Defense University, the Department of Defense, or the U.S. Government.

Aug 29, 2022
Empires of Ideas: Creating the Modern University from Germany to America to China

Will China become the global leader in higher education in the 21st century? The modern research university was born in 19th century Germany; during the 20th, the United States took the lead. In his book Empires of Ideas, William C. Kirby argues that Chinese universities are among the most innovative educational centers in the world. Professor Kirby examines the successes of several leading universities in Germany and the United States, and compares them to three Chinese universities aspiring to become world-class institutions that can compete with the best that United States and Europe have to offer.

In an interview conducted on August 16, 2022, William C. Kirby examines the rise of the modern research university and liberal education, and the challenges facing higher education institutions in China, the United States, and Germany.

0:00 How did U.S. universities come to lead the world?

3:58 What makes a great university?

6:16 How did the German university model change higher education? 9:53: Why are Harvard, Berkeley, and Duke important to understand for the future of U.S. higher ed?

17:08 What can about Tsinghua, Nanjing University, and the University of Hong Kong tell us about Chinese higher ed?

26:00 Are there barriers to conducting research at Chinese universities?

29:03 Is the deteriorating U.S.-China relationship affecting higher ed in both countries?

About the speaker:

Follow William C. Kirby on Twitter (@BillKirbyHBS)

Subscribe to the National Committee on YouTube for video of this interview. Follow us on Twitter (@ncuscr) and Instagram (@ncuscr).

Aug 25, 2022
Latin America, China, and the United States: A Triangular Relationship | Álvaro Méndez, Margaret Myers, Xiaoyu Pu

China’s engagement and influence in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) have grown with the expansion of the Belt and Road Initiative into the region. Increased American attention suggests changes in a complex triangular relationship. What is China's ambition in the region? What would LAC countries stand to gain from more robust partnerships with China? Will they feel pressure to choose between China and the United States?

In a conversation moderated by Xiaoyu Pu on August 12, 2022, Álvaro Méndez and Margaret Myers discuss China’s growing involvement in LAC and its implications for the United States.

About the speakers:

Follow Xiaoyu Pu on Twitter: @pu_xiaoyu

Follow Margaret Myers on Twitter: @MyersMargaret

Follow Álvaro Méndez on Twitter: @alvaroimendez

Subscribe to the National Committee on YouTube for video of this interview. Follow us on Twitter (@ncuscr) and Instagram (@ncuscr).

Aug 22, 2022
Ten Years of China's Belt and Road: Reflections and Recent Developments | Min Ye, Ka Zeng

China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) was first discussed ten years ago. What has happened over the past ten years? Due to the COVID-19 lockdown, BRI’s current state and future trajectories are more confusing and controversial than ever. Do China’s leading coalitions still support BRI? Min Ye discusses the current status and future directions of China’s Belt and Road Initiative in conversation with Ka Zeng.

0:00 Introduction

2:20 Who are the BRI actors?

7:48 Global and domestic impact

14:39 Transparency and corruption

20:30 U.S.-China competition

30:14 Economy

32:24 Cooperation

About the speakers:

Follow Min Ye on Twitter: @beltbeyond

Subscribe to the National Committee on YouTube for video of this interview. Follow us on Twitter (@ncuscr) and Instagram (@ncuscr).

Aug 05, 2022
Taiwan, China, and the United States - What is at Stake? | Ryan Hass

Taiwan is a major flashpoint amid escalating tensions in U.S.-China relations. Ryan Hass, senior fellow at the Brookings Institution, explains U.S. policy on Taiwan and China’s forceful reactions to perceived changes in the status quo.

0:48 — One China Principle vs Policy

3:11 — What is strategic ambiguity?

6:05 — Pelosi's Taiwan visit—why does China care so much?

10:32 — Future of U.S.-China relations

About the speaker:

Follow Ryan Hass on Twitter: @ryanl_hass

Subscribe to the National Committee on YouTube for video of this interview. Follow us on Twitter (@ncuscr) and Instagram (@ncuscr).

Aug 02, 2022
Daring to Struggle: China’s Global Ambitions Under Xi Jinping | Bates Gill

Increasingly powerful, prosperous, and authoritarian, China under the leadership of Xi Jinping has become an increasingly intense competitor across the globe economically, technologically, diplomatically, militarily, and in seeking to influence people’s hearts and minds. But what does China ultimately want in the world?

In Daring to Struggle: China’s Global Ambitions Under Xi Jinping, Bates Gill explains the fundamental motivations driving the country’s dynamic, assertive, and risk-taking approach to the world under Xi Jinping. In an interview conducted on July 21, 2022, Bates Gill analyzes how the pursuit of six major goals – legitimacy, sovereignty, wealth, power, leadership, and ideas – shapes China’s foreign relationships in its Indo-Pacific neighborhood and beyond.

0:00 The book

2:51 Economic growth

8:48 Taiwan

14:23 Xinjiang

18:47 Ukraine

21:55 China as a military threat

26:07 Can diplomacy work?

29:44 People-to-people exchange

33:00 Xi Jinping's mission

About the speaker:

Subscribe to the National Committee on YouTube for video of this interview. Follow us on Twitter (@ncuscr) and Instagram (@ncuscr).

Jul 31, 2022
Threat Inflation and the Chinese Military | Michael Swaine

Find the link to Michael Swaine's report here:

According to a recent report by Michael D. Swaine, framing the military challenge Beijing poses in alarmist, worst-case ways weakens the U.S. ability to determine the limits of Chinese threats. It also undermines voices within China that favor moderation, raises the danger of Sino-American crises and military conflict, and diverts U.S. resources away from desperately needed nonmilitary uses at home and abroad.

The United States cannot build its way out of the deepening military competition with China, nor develop a successful long-term China strategy based on inflated threats. It must accept the logic of balance over dominance in many areas, fashion credible strategies designed both to deter and reassure Beijing in both the regional and global arenas, and strengthen its capacities at home.

Michael Swaine discusses more effective approaches than threat inflation to facing China’s increasingly powerful military in an interview conducted on July 8, 2022.

About the speaker:

Subscribe to the National Committee on YouTube for video of this interview. Follow us on Twitter (@ncuscr) and Instagram (@ncuscr)

Jul 18, 2022
Indelible City: Dispossession and Defiance in Hong Kong | Louisa Lim

What is Hong Kong? According to the British, a “barren rock” without meaningful history; to China, a part of Chinese soil from the beginning of time, finally returned to its rightful place in 1997. When protests erupted in 2019 and were met with escalating suppression, Louisa Lim, a journalist raised in Hong Kong who as an adult has covered the region for more than a decade, felt compelled to tell Hong Kong’s untold stories. In Indelible City: Dispossession and Defiance in Hong Kong, Dr. Lim combines history and memoir to explicate Hong Kong’s history, the present reality that Hong Kong is not “just another Chinese city,” and the future that may be unfolding.

In an interview conducted on June 27, 2022, Louisa Lim centers Hong Kongers as she discusses a diverse cast of characters including the memorable and mysterious King of Kowloon.

About the speaker:

Jul 10, 2022
China’s Economic Challenge: Unconventional Success | Albert Keidel

In China’s Economic Challenge: Unconventional Success, Albert Keidel examines the economic approaches responsible for China’s 40 years of rapid growth, suggesting how such strategies might be applied elsewhere. He discusses the government’s leadership role, success in poverty reduction, and international finance and trade experience. The book reviews why China’s success challenges the United States and the field of development economics. He describes how generous rural price and land-tenure reform in the 1980s caused a rural income boom that threatened urban subsidized livelihoods and underpinned consequent violence. China may face similar challenges moving forward, during the planned merger of the rural and urban work forces.

In an interview conducted on June 17, 2022, Albert Keidel analyzes the institutions and policies responsible for China’s successful development and possible future trajectory, examines the U.S.-China trade war, and considers the country’s economic prospects in light of COVID-19.

Jun 27, 2022
Kingdom of Characters: The Language Revolution That Made China Modern | Jing Tsu
Less than a century ago, China faced myriad challenges in catching up to a world that had passed it by technologically. In her new book, Kingdom of Charactes, Jing Tsu breaks down how the monumental and transformative task of bringing the Chinese language into the modern era also modernized China itself.

Jing Tsu joined the National Committee on June 1, 2022 to discuss the visionaries, reformers, and revolutionaries whose linguistic innovations made China’s ascent to its global role today possible.

Jun 09, 2022
China’s Zero-COVID Policies: Impact and Implications | Silvia Lindtner, Melinda Liu

China is under scrutiny as it attempts to quash its largest COVID-19 outbreak since the early days of the pandemic. The latest wave of infections is the most serious in the country since the disease first emerged in Wuhan two years ago and is putting the government under immense pressure as it sticks with its ‘dynamic zero-COVID strategy’. Shanghai has been in lockdown for over a month, causing serious disruption to its 25 million residents and the economy, with a potential lockdown in Beijing on the horizon.

Silvia Lindtner and Melinda Liu discuss China’s current COVID situation and explore the many secondary and tertiary effects that the Omicron wave in China is having around the world during an interview conducted on May 23, 2022.

Jun 01, 2022
Americans' Negative Views on China: Latest Pew Survey Results | Laura Silver

According to a Pew Research Center report released in April, Americans view China's partnership with Russia as a serious problem for the United States, amid concerns over China's growing superpower status and economic might. More than 60 percent of American adults believe the Russia-China relationship is a very serious problem, more people than say the same about other critical issues, including China's involvement in American politics, its human rights policies, and tensions between China and Taiwan.

Pew Research Center senior researcher Laura Silver discussed the survey findings in an interview conducted on May 10, 2022.

May 17, 2022
North Korea's Missile Tests: What Do They Mean? | Sue Mi Terry
President Biden will visit Seoul in May for his first meeting with newly-elected South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol, as both countries face increasing mutual concerns, including North Korea's first intercontinental ballistic missile launch since 2017 in March, followed by the April test of a new tactical guided weapon to boost nuclear capability. How will these events influence Korea-China-U.S. Relations? What are the effects of Russia's invasion of Ukraine? What should we expect from President Biden's visit to Seoul?

Sue Mi Terry discusses North Korea’s recent weapons tests, China’s response, and the implications for U.S.-China relations during an interview conducted on April 29, 2022.

May 11, 2022
Avoidable War: Dangers of a Catastrophic Conflict between the U.S. & Xi Jinping's China | Kevin Rudd

A war between China and the United States would be catastrophic, but, unfortunately, is no longer unthinkable. In "The Avoidable War," Kevin Rudd demystifies the actions of both sides, describing how the countries can coexist without betraying their core interests.

According to Mr. Rudd, a former Australian prime minister who has studied, lived in, and worked with China for more than forty years, the relationship between the United States and China is especially volatile. It sits atop cultural misunderstanding, historical grievance, and ideological incompatibility. No other nations are so quick to offend and be offended; the capacity for either country to cross a critical line is growing rapidly.

Mr. Rudd discusses how the United States and China can find a way to co-exist without compromising their core interests through “managed strategic competition” in an interview conducted on April 25, 2022.

May 04, 2022
U.S.-China Climate Finance Cooperation: Can We Avoid the Carbon Tsunami? | Kelly Sims Gallagher

The United States and China, as the world’s two largest economies and carbon emitters, have an opportunity to accelerate financing for low-carbon technologies, particularly in developing countries. One promising mechanism for action is climate finance; nevertheless, experts estimate an annual shortfall of $850 billion in climate-related financing in developing markets, which need it most.


In an interview conducted on April 6, 2022, Kelly Sims Gallagher discusses the importance of U.S.-China cooperation in accelerating global climate finance.

Apr 26, 2022
Chinese Media Coverage of the Russian Invasion of Ukraine | Xiaoyu Pu, Maria Repnikova

Since the Russian invasion of Ukraine on February 24, 2022, the Chinese government has tried to walk a fine line of neutrality. It has abstained on UN resolutions and not condemned the Russian invasion or the slaughter of civilians. On the other hand, it has restated its support of sovereignty, territorial integrity, and the UN Charter. State owned media and social media have often repeated Russia’s propaganda to the great concern of the U.S. and European governments.

Xiaoyu Pu and Maria Repnikova discuss China’s international and domestic media coverage of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the system behind this coverage, and its implications for U.S.-China relations during an interview conducted on April 18, 2022.

Apr 25, 2022
Gang Chen’s Story and the End of the China Initiative

On January 20, 2022, a federal court in Boston dismissed charges against Massachusetts Institute of Technology engineering professor Gang Chen, who had been accused of concealing his affiliations with Chinese government institutions. The dropping of all charges against Dr. Chen was a major setback for the China Initiative, a U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) program meant to combat economic espionage and intellectual property theft conducted by the Chinese government. Some argue that the DOJ’s efforts to counter Chinese national security threats led to racial profiling and created a climate of fear among academics and researchers of Chinese descent in the United States. On February 23, 2022, the DOJ announced that it had terminated the China Initiative.

In an interview conducted on April 13, 2022, Professor Gang Chen talks about his case and his reaction to the end of the China Initiative, what it means to him and the broader scientific community.

Gang Chen is the Carl Richard Soderberg Professor of power engineering at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). He served as the head of the MIT department of mechanical engineering from 2013 to 2018. His research interests center on nanoscale thermal transport and energy conversion phenomena and their applications in energy storage and conversion, thermal management, and water treatment and desalination. He has received numerous awards, including the National Science Foundation Young Investigator Award, an American Society of Mechanical Engineers’ (ASME) Heat Transfer Memorial Award, an ASME Frank Kreith Award in Energy, and a Nukiyama Memorial Award by the Japan Heat Transfer Society, among others. He is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, American Physical Society, the ASME, and the Guggenheim Foundation. He is an academician of Academia Sinica, a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the U.S. National Academy of Engineering.

Apr 15, 2022
Ping Pong Diplomacy’s 50-year Legacy: The Courtside View with Jan Berris

On April 12, 1972, the Chinese national ping pong team arrived in Detroit, the first unofficial visitors from the People’s Republic of China to the United States since the establishment of the PRC in 1949. One of the many excited people waiting on the tarmac to welcome the team was Jan Berris – at that time a program associate with the National Committee, now its vice president.

Fifty years later, on April 12, 2022, Jan Berris shared stories of the historic process – from the funny to the momentous – and reflected on the enduring legacy of Ping Pong Diplomacy on U.S.-China relations.

Jan Berris has been with the National Committee on U.S.-China Relations since 1971 – beginning as program associate, moving on to program director, and vice president. She is responsible for overseeing all program activities of the Committee: this includes the preparation and execution of hundreds of Chinese delegations to the United States, American delegations to China, as well as NCUSCR’s Track II programs, and other flagship programs. Given her familiarity with the Chinese media at the time, the U.S. State Department asked her to coordinate Chinese press activities during Premier Deng Xiaoping’s February 1979 visit to the United States, and she has been the lead for the Committee’s hosting of major welcoming events for all of the most senior Chinese leaders.

Prior to joining the Committee, Ms. Berris was a foreign service officer, stationed in Hong Kong and Washington, D.C. She received her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Michigan.

Apr 12, 2022
Americans in China: Encounters with the People’s Republic | Terry Lautz

"Americans in China: Encounters with the People's Republic" tells the stories of a diverse assortment of men and women who have engaged with China as adversaries and emissaries, mediators and advocates, interpreters and reporters, soldiers, scientists, entrepreneurs, and scholars. For each of them, China was more than just another place: it was an idea, a cause, a revolution, a civilization. Their experiences provide unique insights and deeply human perspectives on issues that have shaped U.S. engagement with the PRC during the past seven decades.

In an interview conducted on March 4, 2022, Terry Lautz discusses some of the figures in his book and what they suggest about American engagement in China in a conversation with Helena Kolenda of the Henry Luce Foundation.

Mar 19, 2022
Two Sessions at a Turning Point | Victor Shih

The annual meetings of the National People's Congress (NPC) and Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), colloquially known as the “Two Sessions” or “Lianghui,” feature the gathering of political leaders in Beijing each spring to announce plans and goals for the coming year. In 2022, amidst heightened global tensions, the continuing pandemic, the Russian invasion of Ukraine, and the 20th Party Congress coming in the fall, China’s domestic political events may hold even greater significance for the world than usual. What does the 2022 Two Sessions meeting suggest about China’s priorities in 2022 and beyond? Will the tightening in sectors including education, real estate, and investment initiated in 2021 continue?

In an interview conducted on March 11, 2022, Political economist and U.C. San Diego Professor Victor Shih shares insights and analyses of the Two Sessions and what this year’s meetings may indicate about China’s domestic and foreign policy going forward.

Mar 16, 2022
Eyes on Ukraine Part II: Strategic Implications for China, Russia, and the United States | Yun Sun

Since the February 24, 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine, China’s position has come under scrutiny. Politically, for decades China has upheld the principles of territorial integrity and sovereignty; Beijing has continued to talk about these ideals over the past few weeks while also blaming the west for creating the conditions – specifically, the eastern expansion of NATO after the fall of the Soviet Union – that led to Russia’s actions. Economically, China has sharply opposed sanctions, claiming that they are both illegal and counter-productive, while also announcing significant oil and wheat deals that might be interpreted as supporting Russia’s economy. Looming over all is the question of what parallels there might be between Russia and Ukraine and China and Taiwan.

Yun Sun discusses the rhetoric, actions, and relationships between and among Russia, China, and the United States since Russia invaded Ukraine in an interview conducted on March 7, 2022.

Mar 11, 2022
The World According to China | Elizabeth Economy

A populous superpower, China could transform the international system. Xi Jinping’s calls for China to “lead in the reform of the global governance system” suggest that he has precisely that ambition. The international community needs to understand and respond to the great risks, as well as potential rewards, of a world rebuilt by China.

In an interview conducted on February 28, 2022, Elizabeth Economy describes China’s strategy to recover the country’s past glory and reshape the geostrategic landscape. President Xi’s vision is one of Chinese centrality on the global stage, in which the mainland has realized its sovereignty claims over Hong Kong, Taiwan, and the South China Sea; deepened its global political, economic, and security reach through the Belt and Road Initiative; and used its leadership in the United Nations and other institutions to align international norms and values, particularly surrounding human rights, around its own.

Note: Dr. Economy spoke in her personal capacity; all views expressed are hers and do not reflect policy of the United States Government or the Department of Commerce.

Mar 10, 2022
Interlocking Rings: Image and Identity at the 2022 Beijing Olympic Games | Amy Qin, Xu Guoqi

Regardless of where they are held, nationalism and identity affect how the Olympic Games are portrayed and perceived. 

In an interview conducted on February 22, 2022, New York Times correspondent Amy Qin and University of Hong Kong history professor Guoqi Xu discuss issues of national and individual identity at Beijing Games.

Mar 02, 2022
Eyes on Ukraine: Strategic Implications for China, Russia, and the United States | Yun Sun

As global attention focuses on Russia's military buildup along its border with Ukraine, increasingly stronger ties between China and Russia raise concerns with the United States and its allies. At the Putin-Xi summit on the eve of the Winter Olympics, China explicitly backed Russia's security concerns over further NATO expansion in Eastern Europe, bringing this relationship to the geopolitical forefront. Although China-Russia cooperation has its limits, this strategic alignment could challenge U.S. political, ideological, and security interests and the U.S.-led global order.

Yun Sun discusses the current state of Sino-Russian relations and its potential impact on the U.S.-China relationship in an interview conducted on February 8, 2022.

Feb 10, 2022
Is China a Communist Country? | Meg Rithmire

Meg Rithmire (Harvard Business School) gives an updated summary of China's unique political and economic system, describing its changing relationship towards Chinese businesses, citizens, and even the United States.

Jan 11, 2022
The China Paradox: At the Front Line of Economic Transformation | Paul Clifford

In his recently updated book, The China Paradox: At the Front Line of Economic Transformation, Paul G. Clifford documents the twists and turns of China’s dramatic and surprising rise over the last four decades. New chapters explore tech giant Huawei and China’s frictions with the world fueled by perceptions that China’s technological progress threatens the global economic order. Is China under President Xi Jinping retreating from the economic reforms at the heart of China recent achievements?

In an interview conducted on December 22, 2021, Paul G. Clifford discusses the risks to China’s development and stability posed by the slowing of reform amid increased autocracy.

Jan 04, 2022
U.S.-China First Strike Showdown: Rising Nuclear Tensions | M. Taylor Fravel Tong Zhao

Not since China's detonation of its first atomic weapon in 1964 has the United States been so concerned with the country's nuclear capabilities. Recent satellite images suggest China is constructing 100 new ICBM silos, and the Pentagon estimates that China could possess well over 1,000 nuclear warheads by the end of the decade. In addition, the successful test of a cutting-edge, nuclear-capable hypersonic missile last month has rattled the U.S. security community.

Why is China rapidly bulking up its nuclear arsenal, and why now? What does this spell for an already fraught U.S.-China security relationship? And how should the United States respond in its efforts to maintain "strategic stability”?

On December 13, 2021, the National Committee interviewed M. Taylor Fravel and Tong Zhao to discuss these questions and more on China's expanding nuclear capabilities.

Dec 15, 2021
Rising to the Challenge: Advancing U.S.-China Relations | Ryan Hass, Bruce Jones

A new Brookings Institution report argues that the era of deepening ties between the United States and China ushered in by the 1972 Nixon visit to China is over, and suggests that frictions may be mitigated by a bipartisan approach to China that appeals to allies in Europe and Asia and tempers the reality of competition with cooperation on global public goods.

In an interview conducted on November 22, 2021, two of the report's co-authors Ryan Hass and Bruce Jones introduce the key findings of the report, “Rising to the Challenge: Navigating Competition, Avoiding Crisis, and Advancing US Interests in Relations with China,” and discuss how many Americans now view China as their country's most formidable challenger and potential adversary.

Dec 03, 2021
From Trump to Biden and Beyond: Reimagining U.S.-China Relations | Earl Carr, Carolyn Kissane

As President Biden’s first year in office coincides with the 50th anniversary of President Nixon’s announcement that he would visit the People’s Republic of China, it seemed like a good time for a group of experts to try to re-imagine U.S.- China relations. "From Trump to Biden and Beyond" is the result of their efforts. It provides insights into global issues that will define America and China now and in the future, including tech innovation, energy and climate cooperation, engagement with Latin America, cross-Strait relations and the Indo-Pacific, among others. It suggests ways for Washington to articulate a new set of values, objectives, and tactics to define the most important bilateral relationship in the world and address the challenges it presents.

In an interview conducted on November 12, 2021, Earl Carr and Carolyn Kissane discussed ways in which the Biden administration might deal with the challenges presented by the Sino-American relationship.

Nov 19, 2021
What’s New?: A Discussion of the CCP Sixth Plenum | Jude Blanchette, Diana Fu

The Sixth Plenum of the 19th Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee was held in Beijing November 8-11, laying the groundwork for a twice-a-decade party congress in 2022. The gathering of approximately 375 Central Committee members and alternates was expected to review the work of the CPC over the last 100 years and to set goals for the next 100 years. In recent decades, the party has devoted the final plenary session to discussions of party affairs, especially key appointments, ideology, and party-building.

In an interview conducted on November 12, 2021, Jude Blanchette and Diana Fu discuss the implications of what was and was not announced at the Sixth Plenum.

Nov 15, 2021
U.S.-China Relations & the Future of Global Supply Chains | Peter Cleveland, Mark Dallas, Brittany Masalosalo

In the past, supply chains were primarily understood through a lens of economic efficiency and competitiveness. Today, the conversation has shifted to a prism of various new concepts such as resiliency, decoupling, reshoring, self-reliance, and mostly notably, national security.

In an interview conducted on August 12, 2021, moderated by Mark Dallas (Union College), Peter Cleveland (TSMC) and Brittany Masalosalo (3M) discuss global supply chains and how the United States and China can better work with one another and with business practitioners to ensure that markets are adequately secure and open.

Nov 09, 2021
The Meaning of AUKUS for China, Europe, and the U.S. | Theresa Fallon, Richard McGregor, Jason Kelly

On September 15, U.S. President Joe Biden, Australia Prime Minister Scott Morrison, and U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced a new trilateral security partnership described by PM Morrison as “a next-generation partnership built on a strong foundation of proven trust.”

What does the partnership, known as AUKUS, suggest for the three countries involved, for France and the rest of the European Union, and for China and other countries in the Indo-Pacific region? 

In an interview conducted on October 12, 2021, Theresa Fallon and Richard McGregor analyze the significance of AUKUS in conversation with Jason Kelly.

Oct 25, 2021
Biodiversity Crisis: Demanding U.S.-China Action | U.S.-China HORIZONS

Li Shuo discusses the importance of biodiversity loss as an issue of mutual concern in the bilateral relationship and highlighted specific areas where cooperation is essential to the future of the planet.

Oct 17, 2021
China and the CPTPP: What’s the Deal? | Scott Kennedy

In September 2021, China formally submitted its application to join the large regional free trade agreement known as the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP). The CPTPP, which currently has 11 member countries with 495 million people and a combined GDP of $13.5 trillion, originally started as the U.S.-backed Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) before the United States withdrew from the deal in 2017 following bipartisan pushback.

In order for China to join the CPTPP, it would need approval by all 11 member countries. What is the likelihood that China’s application will be successful? Is China able to deliver on the high-level trade standards required by the CPTPP? Will the United States remain on the sidelines as China continues to deepen its economic integration in the Asia Pacific region and beyond?

In an interview conducted on October 6, 2021, Scott Kennedy discusses China’s request to join the CPTPP, the likelihood of approval, and the potential impact on the global trade landscape.

Oct 15, 2021
Evergrande on the Edge: Implications of a Corporate Crisis | Meg Rithmire, Keith Abell

China’s massive real estate market has been shaken by recent news of property developer China Evergrande Group’s increasingly dire financial situation. What explains the company’s predicament, and how has the Chinese government responded? How did giant conglomerates such as Evergrande become so prominent in the Chinese economy? What is the significance of real estate for individual households and China’s economy as a whole, and what does the government handling of Evergrande reveal about the relationship between the Chinese Communist Party and big business?

In an interview conducted on October 5, 2021, Meg Rithmire analyzes the domestic and global economic and political implications of the troubles facing real estate giant China Evergrande Group in conversation with Keith Abell.

Oct 08, 2021
China’s Population Crisis: Women and Society | Ye Liu, Carl Minzner

The results of China's 2020 census, released in May 2021, reveal that population growth over the past decade has been the lowest since the 1950s. China's government has now loosened some restrictions, allowing married couples to have as many as three children. This signals increasing concern by policy makers, and may suggest further measures in the near future as the wide-ranging repercussions of demographic changes reverberate across Chinese society.

In an interview conducted on September 14, 2021, Dr. Ye Liu and Professor Carl Minzner discuss the social implications of China’s accelerating demographic crisis, with specific attention to the varied reactions of women in China to recent policy shifts and comparisons of China's demographic challenges with those in other parts of East Asia.

Oct 01, 2021
China's Crackdown on After-School Tutoring and its Implications | Wenchi Yu

In July, China’s State Council banned after-school tutoring. Companies that operate ed tech platforms or provide online education were forbidden from raising capital through IPOs, and listed companies and foreign investors were barred from investing or acquiring stakes in education firms that teach school subjects. 

The industry is enormous: some $10 billion of venture capital flowed into China’s edtech sector in 2020 alone. According to a listing prospectus from New Oriental Education, a major tutoring company, the total number of K-12 student enrolments in after-school tutoring increased from 202.6 million in 2015 to 325.3 million in 2019 and was expected to increase to 659.5 million by 2024. 

In an interview conducted on September 1, 2021, Ms. Wenchi Yu discusses the recent crackdown on private tutoring in China.

Sep 10, 2021
The Benefits, Challenges, and Long-Term Impact of Educational Exchange | Lenora Chu, Willie J. Thompson

Journalist and author Lenora Chu and senior associate consultant at The Bridgespan Group Willie Thompson discuss how their exchange experiences have shaped their views of, and enabled them to speak effectively about, China.

Aug 26, 2021
Trouble in Afghanistan: U.S.-China Influence in the Heart of Asia | Derek Grossman, Niva Yau

The U.S. military is pulling out of Afghanistan, a process that should be complete by August 31. Both China and the United States face looming strategic challenges as a result. America’s presence has preserved a fragile balance of power in Central South Asia, benefitting both the United States and China. It has prevented terror activities from spilling over Afghanistan’s borders, as well as allowing for trade and facilitating the expansion of China’s BRI initiative into neighboring Pakistan. The U.S. foothold in Afghanistan has cost thousands of American lives and over two trillion dollars, but has also mitigated the threat of widespread terror activity, the initial impulse for going in in 2001. What will withdrawal mean for the security, politics, and economics of South Central Asia and for the U.S.-China relationship more broadly?

In an interview conducted on August 19, 2021, Mr. Derek Grossman and Ms. Niva Yau discuss the implications of the American troop withdrawal from Afghanistan for U.S.-China relations in conversation with Dr. Daniel Markey.

Aug 24, 2021
Climate Change and National Security | Scott Moore

The adverse effects of climate change are already being seen in crippling high temperatures, prolonged droughts, and a seemingly constant stream of extreme weather events testing countries all over the world. With the United States and China jointly accounting for over 40 percent of global greenhouse emissions and geopolitical competition intensifying, Dr. Scott Moore explains how domestic national security interests intersect with the bilateral conversation on climate. As each nation seeks to mitigate the worst effects of climate change within their borders, where is bilateral climate cooperation taking place now and how might it develop in the future?

In an interview conducted on August 5, 2021, Dr. Scott Moore discusses the implications for climate change on national security in both China and the United States.

Aug 18, 2021
Surveying the Field: American International Relations and Security Programs Focused on China

On August 12, 2021, the National Committee on United States-China Relations published a report based on a survey of leading American academic centers, think tanks, and NGOs on China-related issues. The survey, conducted in late 2020, was commissioned by Carnegie Corporation of New York in order to assess the state of China-focused international relations and peace and security programs in the United States. The 82 responses present a snapshot of the field in an era of global disruption, instability, and growing Sino-American tensions. In this interview, National Committee Senior Program Officer Rosie Levine explores the key findings from the report and the broader implications for the U.S.-China relationship. Read the report:

Aug 11, 2021
Japan's Foreign Relations: Balancing the United States and China | Ken Moriyasu

In recent years Japan has found itself increasingly at a crossroads between its post-War ally, the United States, and rising neighbor, China. U.S. Editor and Chief Desk Editor of Nikkei Asia, Ken Moriyasu, examines the geopolitics, trade, and history that play a role in shaping Japan’s ties with both major powers.

Jul 29, 2021
Semiconductors: Competition at the Cutting Edge | U.S.-China HORIZONS

In many critical technology industries, the United States and China are locked in an intense competition for economic and innovative primacy. At the same time, the supply chains, talent pools, and financial capital of individuals, corporations, and governments in both countries are deeply entangled in one larger tech ecosystem. Using the semiconductor industry as a case study, we asked NCUSCR Director Anja Manuel to shine a light on this complex web of collaboration and competition, and discuss what it could mean for humanity’s shared technological future.

Anja Manuel is co-founder and partner in Rice, Hadley, Gates & Manuel LLC, a strategic consulting firm that helps U.S. companies navigate international markets. She is a former diplomat, author, and advisor on emerging markets.

Jul 02, 2021
U.S.-China Professional Exchange: Interview with NCUSCR Professional Fellows Program Alumni

National Committee Professional Fellows Program alumni Jo Nelson and Li Sai discuss the impact of their exchange experiences on their professional and personal lives and on their broader views of people-to-people exchange. Learn more at

Jun 22, 2021
Difficult Choices: Taiwan’s Quest for Security and the Good Life | Richard Bush

Taiwan faces many internal issues, as well as pressures from China which exacerbate home-grown problems. Its responses to these internal and external challenges, and ultimately whether it can stand its ground against China’s ambitions, will be formulated within the island's lively democratic system. "In Difficult Choices: Taiwan’s Quest for Security and the Good Life," Richard Bush explores the issues and policy choices Taiwan confronts and offers suggestions for what Taiwan can do to help itself and what the United States should do to improve Taiwan’s chances of success.  In an interview conducted on June 8, 2021, Dr. Richard Bush discussed Taiwan’s predicament as it deals with internal issues and pressure from China, and recommended actions Taiwan and the United States could take to improve the likelihood that Taiwan will thrive.

Jun 16, 2021
Reflections on the Strategic Competition Act | Michael Swaine, Rachel Esplin Odell

The two sponsors of the Strategic Competition Act (S. 1169), Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ) and Senator James Risch (R-ID), chairman and ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, respectively, hailed committee passage of the legislation on April 21, stating that the bill “is an unprecedented, bipartisan effort to mobilize all United States strategic, economic, and diplomatic tools for an Indo-Pacific strategy that enables the U.S. government to compete effectively with the People’s Republic of China and the challenges it poses to our national and economic security for decades to come.” By contrast, Dr. Michael Swaine of the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft sees the legislation as a dangerous “de facto declaration of a cold war with the People’s Republic of China.”

In an interview conducted on May 27, 2021, Dr. Michael Swaine and Dr. Rachel Odell discussed the Strategic Competition Act and its implications for U.S.-China relations.

Jun 08, 2021
Major Power Rivalry in East Asia | Evan Medeiros

In an interview conducted on May 12, 2021, Dr. Evan Medeiros discusses how conflict and conflict prevention are becoming increasingly central to American China policy as competition prevails in the policy framework.


May 19, 2021
China's Science-Fiction Universe | Aynne Kokas, Jing Tsu, and Yilin Wang

In China, industry and political leaders are capitalizing on sci-fi’s unique ability to inspire the public and project a vision of the future that features China as a global innovation leader. Experts Aynne Kokas, Jing Tsu, and Yilin Wang explore how this genre can both reflect China’s present and shape its future.

May 12, 2021
Deborah Seligsohn on the Geopolitics of Climate

The United States and China have pledged to work together to fight climate change. But is cooperation enough to stop global temperatures from rising past 1.5 degrees Celsius? Climate policy expert Deborah Seligsohn (Villanova University) explains how competition between the two countries can be leveraged as a positive force to deliver the best environmental outcomes. For more videos and podcasts, visit us at

Apr 23, 2021
James Millward on Recent Developments in Xinjiang: Implications for the United States

Policies adopted by the People's Republic of China in Xinjiang since 2017 have garnered worldwide attention, as new technology has dramatically intensified methods of control and implicated China’s international trade, which includes a variety of products from Xinjiang and employs the labor of Xinjiang people. The Chinese Communist Party's new ethnic policies thus have growing international repercussions. Dr. James Millward discusses recent developments in Xinjiang, responses of governments around the world, and the implications for individual consumers in an interview conducted on March 31, 2021.

Apr 07, 2021
Confronting Anti-Asian Racism | Russell Jeung

Stop AAPI Hate co-founder Russell Jeung addresses the alarming reports of violence and crimes committed against Asian Americans over the past year. He examines the racist beliefs that often motivate perpetrators, discusses the influence of social media, and offers a hopeful look at how Asian American communities and their allies are standing up to injustice nationwide.

Russell Jeung is a professor of Asian American studies at San Francisco State University. In 2020, Dr. Jeung launched Stop AAPI Hate, a project for tracking Covid-19-related discrimination in order to develop community resources and policy interventions to fight racism. Learn more about anti-Asian racism in the United States, and what you can do to help:

Apr 02, 2021
Anatomy of a Flop: Why Trump's U.S.-China Phase One Trade Deal Fell Short | Chad Bown

Dr. Chad Bown discusses the trade deal and prospects for American trade policies toward China in the new administration in an interview conducted on March 10, 2021.

In a February 8 report for the Peterson Institute for International Economics, Dr. Chad Bown argues that the U.S.-China Phase One Trade Deal should be examined by the Biden administration. The centerpiece of the trade deal – China’s pledge to buy $200 billion more of U.S. goods and services split over 2020 and 2021 – has thus far fallen far short of its target. Other elements of the deal, such as China’s commitment to reduce nontariff barriers and open up to foreign investment, merit consideration as the new administration develops its international economic policies. A fresh U.S. policy approach toward China is needed, and should be undertaken jointly with like-minded countries.

Mar 19, 2021
Yun Sun on the Myanmar Coup, China, and the United States

The February events in Myanmar have startled the world. While some countries quickly called the military takeover a coup, and U.S. President Joe Biden imposed sanctions to prevent the generals behind the coup from gaining access to funds in the United States, China has maintained a neutral position. Nonetheless, Myanmar’s unexpected political developments will inevitably introduce challenges and uncertainties into China-Myanmar relations. Geographical proximity, as well as complicated historical, ethnic, political, and economic ties, mean that whoever is in power in Naypyidaw will want to maintain a positive relationship with Beijing.

Yun Sun discusses the February 1 coup, subsequent events, Chinese responses, and the potential impact on Sino-U.S. relations in an interview conducted on March 5, 2021.

Mar 08, 2021
Beyond Borders: China's Arctic Ambitions | U.S.-China HORIZONS

Arctic security and international relations expert Marc Lanteigne explores China's scientific, economic, and political interests in a rapidly changing region.

Dr. Marc Lanteigne is an associate professor of political science at UiT - the Arctic University of Norway, and is the author and editor of several books, including Routledge Handbook of Arctic Security (Routledge 2020).

Feb 19, 2021
China's Distant Water Fleet | U.S.-China HORIZONS

Responding to domestic and international demand for seafood, China’s state-owned and private fishing enterprises have amassed the largest fleet of industrial long-distance ships in the world. Principal Investigator of Fisheries for Ecotrust Canada, Dr. Dyhia Belhabib, breaks down how and where the fleet operates, who it impacts, and what steps must be taken to ensure sustainable and equitable fishing worldwide.


More videos and podcasts from U.S.-China HORIZONS:

Jan 13, 2021
Margaret Lewis on Taiwan's Outlook for 2021

A successful pandemic response helped reshape Taiwan’s image in 2020. Could a new U.S. administration further change the island’s prospects in 2021?


Margaret Lewis explores the new year's possibilities for U.S.-Taiwan relations, as well as the key issues facing the Taiwan government’s domestic and global standing.

Jan 12, 2021
China’s Fintech Explosion: Disruption, Innovation, and Survival | Sara Hsu

Financial technology – aka fintech – is gaining in popularity globally as a way to improve the efficiency and accessibility of financial services. Fintech is taking off in China, catering to markets that state-owned banks and the undersized financial sector do not serve amid a backdrop of growing consumption and a large, tech-savvy millennial generation.

In this interview, NCUSCR Vice President Margot Landman interviews Sara Hsu, co-author of China’s Fintech Explosion , in which Ms. Hsu and Jianjun Li explore the transformative potential of China’s fintech industry, describing the risks and rewards for participants as well as the impact on consumers. They cover many subsectors of the industry: digital payment systems, peer-to-peer lending and crowdfunding, credit card issuance, internet banks, blockchain finance and virtual currencies, and online insurance. Offering analysis of market potential, risks, and competition, the authors describe major companies including Alipay and Tencent, and other leading fintech firms.

Dec 17, 2020
World Fisheries: Sharing a Resource at Risk | U.S.-China HORIZONS

Global fish consumption has risen rapidly since 1960, resulting in a 25 percent increase in overexploited fish stocks in the past 30 years alone. The United States and China are key drivers of the $150 billion wild seafood industry, making them leading stakeholders in ensuring its sustainable management. Tabitha Mallory, founder and CEO of the China Ocean Institute, discusses how China and the United States contribute to both the problems and solutions for conserving this valuable and vulnerable common resource.

Dec 10, 2020
China and the U.S. Film Industry | U.S.-China HORIZONS

China’s booming film market has become an essential consideration for the production of Hollywood movies. In an effort to take advantage of this audience, American entertainment conglomerates are increasingly partnering with Chinese studios, and producing products for the Chinese market. How will America’s entertainment powerhouses and China’s burgeoning film industry collaborate to build their global brand identities?

Dr. Aynne Kokas is an associate professor of media studies at the University of Virginia. She is the author of Hollywood Made in China (University of California Press, 2017).

For more videos and podcasts from the U.S.-China HORIZONS series, visit us at

Oct 28, 2020
Electric Vehicles: Tesla and U.S.-China Collaboration | U.S.-China HORIZONS

Tesla has proven that U.S. car companies can succeed in China—when they sell electric. But what will it take for the traditional auto industry to meet the demand for new energy vehicles in China and compete with local startups? Tu Le of Sino Auto Insights analyzes U.S.-China collaboration and interaction as a driving force behind the ascending global electric vehicle market.

Tu Le is the founder and managing director of Sino Auto Insights. He is recognized as an automotive & mobility expert in Asia, having spent time living and working in Detroit, Silicon Valley, and China.

For more videos and podcasts from the U.S.-China HORIZONS series, visit us at

Oct 28, 2020
Electric Vehicles: China's Accelerating Industry | U.S.-China HORIZONS

Jennifer Turner explains the recent evolution of China's dynamic new energy vehicle industry, including how it will influence electric vehicles in the United States and around the world.

Jennifer Turner is the director of the Wilson Center’s China Environment Forum and manager of its Global Choke Point Initiative. She is a widely-quoted expert on U.S.-China environmental cooperation as well as climate-related challenges and governance issues facing the world’s most populous country.

For more videos and podcasts from the U.S.-China HORIZONS series, visit us at

Oct 28, 2020
Ling Chen on the Fifth Plenum of the 19th Communist Party Congress

Against the backdrop of a global pandemic, slowing economic growth, and tensions in Xinjiang, Hong Kong, and beyond, Beijing will host its Fifth Plenum of the 19th Chinese Community Party from October 26 to October 29, 2020. Among other items on the Plenum agenda, the 14th Five-Year-Plan will be approved by the more than 300 full and alternate members of the Party Central Committee and a new economic strategy called the “2035 vision” will be unveiled.

Dr. Ling Chen, assistant professor of political science at the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies, examines the upcoming Plenum in the context of Fifth Plenums past, considers the economic and non-economic items likely to be on the agenda, and reflects on the significance of the Plenum for China, the United States, and other parts of the world.  

Oct 22, 2020
Naima Green-Riley on Burning the Boats: Consulate Closures in Houston and Chengdu FULL INTERVIEW

On July 23, 2020, the United States government ordered the Chinese consulate in Houston to close. Less than a week later, the American consulate in Chengdu was vacated as reciprocation from Beijing. Harvard University Department of Government Ph.D. candidate and former U.S. diplomat Naima Green-Riley analyzes the motivations behind each government's drastic step and evaluates the possible implications for the regions serviced by each consulate, as well as the U.S.-China relationship as a whole.

Aug 20, 2020
Frank H. Wu | Visa Restrictions and Lawsuits: Chinese Students Under Fire

The Justice Department's China Initiative against economic espionage and intellectual property theft has made Chinese students in the United States a focus of increasing scrutiny, while Congress has initiated legislation aiming to restrict this broad group's ability to work and study in the United States.   

 In light of the Justice Department's more than 3,000 active investigations of China-affiliated researchers and students in the United States, Queens College President Frank Wu discusses the initiative, the resulting increase in scrutiny of Chinese nationals and Chinese-American students, and the potential threat to American competitiveness and economic vitality that these developments present.     

Frank H. Wu is the president of Queens College, former president of the Committee of 100, and a former litigator and professor of law.

Jul 15, 2020
Margaret Lewis on Tsai Ing-wen and the Future of Taiwan

President Tsai Ing-wen was re-elected in January, 2020, on a platform similar to that of her first term, yet new cross-Strait developments and changing challenges at home suggest the next four years may not be a continuation of the status quo. Seton Hall University law professor and Taiwan expert Margaret Lewis explores the possibilities for mainland-Taiwan relations as well as the local issues that will define both Tsai's second term and the near future of Taiwan.

Jun 03, 2020
Amb. Robert Zoellick | “Responsible Stakeholder” Fifteen Years Later

This speech is an excerpt from the National Committee 2020 Members Program. To hear NCUSCR Chair Ambassador Carla Hills introduction, as well as the extensive q&a with NCUSCR President Stephen Orlins, please listen to the episode on our Events channel, "Amb. Robert Zoellick | 2020 Annual Members Program FULL EVENT." 

The National Committee on U.S.-China Relations was pleased to host a virtual conversation on May 19, 2020, with Ambassador Robert Zoellick, former U.S. Trade Representative and president of the World Bank, among other positions in and outside of government. Fifteen years have passed since his “responsible stakeholder” speech at the National Committee’s 2005 Gala dinner. Ambassador Zoellick offered reflections on his 2005 speech and the policy implications of his approach for the United States when considering the current Sino-U.S. relationship.

May 27, 2020
Coronavirus Economic Impact: U.S.-China Commercial Relations, Challenges and Opportunities

Principal of Albright Stonebridge Group Amy Celico explains the fundamental challenges currently facing the bilateral commercial relationship between the United States and China. She also discusses why the “phase one” trade deal is a positive development and how COVID-19 is highlighting the role of foreign investors in China’s economic growth trajectory.

Amy Celico is a principal at the Albright Stonebridge Group (ASG) and leads the firm’s D.C.-based China practice, assisting corporate and non-profit clients develop and expand their business in China.

This episode is part of the National Committee's Coronavirus Impact Series:

May 07, 2020
M. Taylor Fravel on China's Modern Military Strategy in Historical Perspective

In an interview with NCUSCR President Steve Orlins, M. Taylor Fravel discusses his motivations for and key discoveries from writing, "Active Defense: China's Military Strategy Since 1949." He discusses China's activity in the East and South China Sea, as well as the CCP's definition of geopolitical "core interests." Fravel also considers how a historical perspective of China's military strategy has informed his views on whether China is an active military and national security threat to United States.

On October 10, 2019, Dr. Taylor Fravel presented his findings and discussed the implications for China’s current military behavior.

May 01, 2020
Coronavirus Social Impact: Difficult Choices for Chinese International Students

This episode is part of the National Committee's Coronavirus Impact Series:   

Sociologist Yingyi Ma assesses the difficult decision many Chinese international students at American universities currently face: whether to remain on closed campuses or travel back home. She also discusses how students have had to experience anti-Chinese stigma and navigate the mixed messages from their home country, parents, school administrators, and their country of residence.

Dr. Ma is an associate professor of sociology, a senior research associate at the Center for Policy Research, and director of Asian/Asian American studies at Syracuse University. A specialist in education and migration, Dr. Ma's latest book is, "Ambitious and Anxious: How Chinese Undergraduates Succeed and Struggle in American Higher Education" (Columbia University Press 2019).

Apr 02, 2020
Coronavirus Public Health Impact: "Flatten the Curve" Strategies in China and the U.S.

This episode is part of the National Committee's Coronavirus Impact Series:

As the United States’ confirmed coronavirus cases increase rapidly and China’s continue to decrease, Dr. Elanah Uretsky delivers an overarching analysis of how both countries’ public health responses already have⁠—and will continue⁠—to mitigate the pandemic’s spread. Please note that the following interview reflects information available at the time it was recorded (3/11/20), and that public health circumstances in China and the United States continue to change rapidly.

Dr. Elanah Uretsky is a medical anthropologist who is also broadly trained in global health. She is an assistant professor in international and global studies and anthropology at Brandeis University. A National Committee on U.S.-China Relations Public Intellectuals Program fellow, Dr. Uretsky is also a National Committee member.

Mar 19, 2020
Coronavirus Social Impact: Facing Outbreak Together through Civic Engagement in China

This episode is part of the National Committee's Coronavirus Impact Series:        

The coronavirus outbreak has prompted a wave of public action in China, including fundraising, volunteering, citizen journalism, advocacy, and more. Professor Bin Xu examines varying forms of civic engagement in China, its implications for Chinese society and government, and its pitfalls, most notably the Red Cross Society of China scandal. He explores the novel use of social media and online platforms by the public and compares civic engagement today to the response to the 2008 earthquake in Sichuan.

Bin Xu is an associate professor in the Department of Sociology at Emory University. His research interests lie at the intersection of politics and culture. He is the author of, "The Politics of Compassion: The Sichuan Earthquake and Civic Engagement in China" (Stanford University Press, 2017). Dr. Xu is currently writing a book on the collective memory of China’s “educated youth” (zhiqing) generation—the 17 million Chinese youth sent down to the countryside in the 1960s and 1970s. His research has appeared in leading sociology and China studies journals, including Theory & SocietySociological TheorySocial ProblemsSocial Psychology QuarterlyChina Quarterly, and The China Journal. Dr. Xu is a National Committee on U.S.-China Relations Public Intellectuals Program fellow.

Mar 16, 2020
Coronavirus Social Impact: NGOs Operating and Evolving through COVID-19

This episode is part of the National Committee's Coronavirus Impact Series.

Ford Foundation’s China Director, Elizabeth Knup, considers COVID-19’s potential to change the NGO landscape in China moving forward. She also discusses how her organization has adjusted to work during the epidemic and shares some of the ways Ford-funded NGOs are responding to the crisis.

Elizabeth Knup is the regional director in China for the Ford Foundation, overseeing all grant making in the country from Ford's Beijing office. Ms. Knup serves on the board of the National Committee on US-China Relations.

Mar 11, 2020
Coronavirus Economic Impact: Market Outlook in China and the United States

This episode is part of the National Committee's Coronavirus Impact Series.

In the wake of the Dow Jones’ dramatic correction at the end of February and continued market instability, Keith Abell examines how the coronavirus outbreak is affecting general market outlook and sentiment among investors in the United States and China.

Mr. Abell is the founder of NextWave Investment Strategies and the co-founder of Sungate Properties. He serves as treasurer on the National Committee’s board of directors.

Mar 06, 2020
Coronavirus Economic Impacts: A Message from NCUSCR Chair Carla A. Hills

The following episode is part of the National Committee's Coronavirus Impacts Series.

National Committee Chair Carla Hills delivers a message on the economic impacts of the coronavirus outbreak, specifically its effect on global trade and the phase one U.S.-China trade deal.

Ambassador Carla Hills is the Chair and CEO of Hills & Company, International Consultants. She served as United States Trade Representative from 1989 to 1993.

Mar 06, 2020
David Zweig on China's "Reverse Migration" Strategies and the U.S. Response

In an interview with NCUSCR President Stephen Orlins, Dr. David Zweig shares his research on China's "brain drain," Beijing's 1000 Talents Plan, and Washington's response to that program.

On January 27, 2020, the National Committee hosted a public program with Dr. David Zweig to discuss China’s "reverse migration" efforts, presenting the Thousand Talents Plan as a case study. 

David Zweig is professor emeritus at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology.

Feb 27, 2020
Ambassador Robert Blackwill on Implementing Grand Strategy Toward China

In this podcast, Ambassador Robert Blackwill sits down with NCUSCR President Steve Orlins to discuss his recent report, "Implementing Grand Strategy Toward China: Twenty-Two U.S. Policy Prescriptions," published by the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) in January, 2020. Ambassador Blackwill shares how his report has been received by both critics and proponents of engagement with China, and expands on his analysis of China's increasingly assertive international presence.

On February 13, 2020, Ambassador Blackwill presented his report during a program at the National Committee. The full video can be found at

Ambassador Blackwill is the Henry A. Kissinger senior fellow for U.S. foreign policy at CFR and the Diller-von Furstenberg Family Foundation Distinguished Scholar at the Henry A. Kissinger Center for Global Affairs at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies.

Ambassador Blackwill was deputy assistant to the president and deputy national security advisor for strategic planning under President George W. Bush; he also served as presidential envoy to Iraq. Dr. Blackwill went to the National Security Council (NSC) after serving as the U.S. ambassador to India from 2001 to 2003

Feb 26, 2020
Mark Frazier on Writing Comparative History in Shanghai and Mumbai

Mark Frazier, author of The Power of Place: Contentious Politics in Twentieth-Century Shanghai and Bombay, talks to NCUSCR Vice President Jan Berris about his new book and the two cities that form its comparative poles. Mr. Frazier discusses the history of contentious politics in Shanghai and Mumbai, both of which were national economic, cultural, and political hubs of their respective countries throughout the twentieth century. He also reflects on his experiences conducting research, working with the municipal governments, and engaging with residents in both locations.


On October 3, 2019, Mark Frazier presented his book at a National Committee event in New York City. Join us at an upcoming event, or watch videos of past events:

Dec 27, 2019
Jeffrey Wasserstrom on the Ground in Hong Kong

Demonstrations that started peacefully in Hong Kong more than six months ago have grown increasingly confrontational. On December 10, Professor Jeffrey Wasserstrom of the University of California, Irvine, called in from Hong Kong to deliver his thoughts and observations from the ground to a National Committee teleconference. A long time analyst of protest in pre-1949 China and different parts of the PRC in recent decades, he traveled to Hong Kong in early December, after having last been there in early June when protests began, and shared his perspective on recent events and what he heard and learned from people who have been living through them.


Jeffrey Wasserstrom is Chancellor’s Professor of History at the University of California, Irvine, where he also holds courtesy appointments in Law and in Literary Journalism.

He has just completed work on Vigil: Hong Kong on the Brink, a short book that will be published in February 2020 by Columbia Global Reports. His past books include China in the 21st Century: What Everyone Needs to Know (co-authored by Maura Elizabeth Cunningham), the third edition of which came out from Oxford University Press in 2018, and Student Protests in Twentieth-Century China: The View from Shanghai (Stanford, 1991).

A former member of the Board of Directors of the National Committee, he writes regularly for newspapers, magazines and scholarly journals.

Dec 12, 2019
Jude Blanchette on Neo-Maoism and Civil Society in Contemporary China

In this podcast interview with NCUSCR President Stephen Orlins, Jude D. Blanchette discusses his new book China’s New Red Guards: The Return of Radicalism and the Rebirth of Mao Zedong. Mr. Blanchette shares his inspiration for choosing a topic not focused on in Western literature, and relates his personal experiences conducting research in China.

Mr. Blanchette surveys the potential for a resurgence of Neo-Maoism as an active movement, examines the role previously played by Bo Xilai, former Party-Secretary of Chongqing. Mr. Blanchette then transitions to a broader meditation on President Xi Jinping’s consolidation of power, of which Bo Xilai was an infamous casualty. While recognizing an increasingly constricted political and ideological environment, Mr. Blanchette emphasizes the continued survival of intellectual debate and diverse political thought within China.

On October 18, 2019, Jude Blanchette presented his book at a National Committee event in New York City. Join us at an upcoming event, or watch videos of past events:

Jude D. Blanchette is the Freeman Chair of China Studies at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, D.C. He is also a senior advisor at Crumpton Group, a geo-political risk advisory in Arlington, VA. He serves as an adjunct fellow of the Asia-Pacific Security Program at the Center for a New American Security, and is a National Committee on U.S.-China Relations Public Intellectuals Program fellow. Read Full Bio:

Oct 23, 2019
Admiral Philip S. Davidson on the Complexities, Contradictions, and Conundrums of the U.S.-China Relationship

Admiral Philip Davidson provides an assessment of the U.S.-China relationship, highlighting the complexities, comparing the contradictions, and describing the conundrums facing the United States at a time during which it seems clearer than ever that security and economics are inextricably linked as bilateral competition grows. In this interview, conducted by National Committee President Stephen Orlins, Admiral Davidson draws on his experience at the helm of U.S. Indo-Pacific Command to delve deeper into the issues currently testing the U.S.-China relationship.


On October 2, 2019, Admiral Davidson presented his views at a National Committee event in New York City. Join us at an upcoming event:


Admiral Philip S. Davidson is a 1982 graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy and a distinguished graduate of the U.S. Naval War College with a master’s degree in national security and strategic studies, and a bachelor’s degree in physics. He is the 25th commander of the U.S. Indo-Pacific Command (formerly the U.S. Pacific Command), America's oldest and largest military combatant command, located in Hawaii. Read Full Bio:

Oct 10, 2019
Winston Lord on Working with Henry Kissinger

In this podcast interview with NCUSCR President Stephen Orlins, Ambassador Winston Lord discusses his new book Kissinger on Kissinger: Reflections on Diplomacy, Grand Strategy, and Leadership. Ambassador Lord talks about what it was like to work with Dr. Kissinger, his memories of Nixon's visit to China, and what lessons from his and Dr. Kissinger's experiences can be applied to today's competitive relationship with China.


Winston Lord has had a long and varied career in and out of government, serving as special assistant to the national security advisor (1970-73) and director of the State Department policy planning staff under President Nixon (1973-77), ambassador to China for Presidents Reagan and the first President Bush (1985-89), and assistant secretary of state for East Asian and Pacific affairs under President Clinton (1993-97). Earlier in his career he held many positions in the State Department as a foreign service officer, and served on the policy planning staff of the Defense Department.
Between government postings Ambassador Lord was a board member of many non-partisan, non-government organizations related to global issues. These include his service as president of the Council on Foreign Relations, co-chair of the International Rescue Committee, chair of the National Endowment for Democracy, and chair of the Carnegie Endowment National Commission on America and the New World. He is a member and former director of the National Committee on U.S.-China Relations.

Ambassador Lord earned a B.A. from Yale (magna cum laude) and an M.A. from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy (first in his class). He has received several honorary degrees, the State Department’s Distinguished Honor Award, and the Defense Department’s Outstanding Performance Award. Ambassador Lord has appeared on all major U.S. media networks, and his writings include articles in the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Time, Newsweek, and Foreign Affairs.

Jun 13, 2019
David P. Willard on the Impact of Policymaking on Bilateral Investment

In this interview with NCUSCR President Stephen Orlins, founder and CEO of 52 Capital Partners David P. Willard discusses how his work in mergers and acquisitions is affected by macroeconomic policies in the United States and China and gives his perspective on where the economic relationship between the two countries is heading. Mr. Willard spoke at a National Committee event on April 25, 2019. Learn more:

David P. Willard is the founder, chief executive officer & managing partner of 52 Capital Partners, LLC., responsible for all major aspects of the firm’s executive management, strategy, client development, investment process and thought leadership. Throughout his career, Mr. Willard has executed and participated in major M&A transactions and other corporate matters at firms in the United States, Europe, and Asia, including Goldman, Sachs & Co. and Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP, closing 53 transactions totaling over $150 billion in aggregate value.

A recognized expert on China, Mr. Willard speaks regularly on U.S.-China mergers and acquisitions, as well as other investment topics. He received his B.A. in East Asian Studies from Princeton, and his J.D. from the New York University School of Law. Mr. Willard is a member of the National Committee on United States-China Relations.

Apr 29, 2019
Dr. Weijian Shan on Life in the Gobi Desert During the Cultural Revolution

In this interview with NCUSCR President Stephen Orlins, Dr. Weijian Shan discusses his new autobiography, Out of the Gobi, about his experience during the Cultural Revolution as a manual laborer in the Gobi Desert. He explains what prompted him to write the book and why learning about the Cultural Revolution is essential to understanding China. 

Dr. Shan gave a talk to the National Committee about his book on January 28. Learn more:


Dr. Weijian Shan is chairman and CEO of PAG, one of the largest private equity firms in Asia. Before joining PAG, he was a partner of TPG, a private equity firm based in San Francisco, and co-managing partner of TPG Asia (formerly known as Newbridge Capital). At TPG, Dr. Shan led a number of landmark transactions including the acquisitions of Korea First Bank and China’s Shenzhen Development Bank, both of which made his investors billions of dollars in profits and were made into case studies of Harvard Business School. Previously, Dr. Shan was a managing director of JP Morgan, a professor at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, and laborer in Inner Mongolia.

Despite not attending secondary school, Dr. Shan received an M.A. and Ph.D., both in economics, from the University of California, Berkeley, and an M.B.A. from the Univer­sity of San Francisco. He studied English at the Beijing Institute of Foreign Trade (now the Beijing University of International Business and Economics), where he also taught.

Feb 01, 2019
Peggy Blumenthal on Chinese Students in the United States
As the attendance of Chinese students at U.S. institutions of higher education comes under greater scrutiny, Peggy Blumenthal of the Institute for International Education explains the history of Chinese students in the United States, their impact on American institutions, why they come, and how new visa policies may affect their enrollment. 
Peggy Blumenthal is senior counselor to the president at the Institute for International Education (IIE), where she has served since 1984 and was chief operating officer from 2005 to 2011. Previously, she was assistant director of Stanford University’s Overseas Studies, and coordinator of Graduate Services/Fellowships for the University of Hawaii’s Center for Asian and Pacific Studies.
Jan 25, 2019
Barbara Finamore on the Evolution of China's Response to Climate Change

Barbara Finamore, author of the new book Will China Save the Planet?, talks to Jan Berris, National Commitee Vice President, about China's path to becoming a responsible stakeholder on environmental issues.

Nov 30, 2018
Rongbin Han on the Internet in China

In this interview, Professor Rongbin Han discusses his new book, Contesting Cyberspace in China, with Senior Director for Education Programs Margot Landman. He talks about his experiences a university student in China at the dawn of the Internet, the Internet's relation to democracy as well as illiberal discourse, and the role of the "50-Cent Army" on Chinese social media. 

Nov 30, 2018
Benjamin Shobert on How U.S. Domestic Issues Have Influenced China Policy

In this interview, Benjamin Shobert discusses his new book Blaming China: It Might Feel Good but it Won't Fix America's Economy with National Committee President Stephen Orlins. He talks about the changes in the U.S. political atmosphere that inspired him to write the book, and where he sees the bilateral relationship heading. 

Nov 05, 2018