China’s Alliances With North Korea And The Soviet Union: A Conversation With China’s Leading Historians - An Event With Shen Zhihua, Xia Yafeng & Li Danhui


The School of International and Public Affairs and the Weatherhead East Asia Institute is pleased to host China’s three leading diplomatic historians for a discussion about the history and present day relevance of China’s Cold War-era relations with North Korea and the Soviet Union.

The event, featuring speakers Professors Zhihua Shen, Danhui Li, and Yafeng Xia, will mark the release of two path breaking books: A Misunderstood Friendship: Mao Zedong, Kim Il-sung, and Sino-North Korean Relations, 1949–1976, and Mao and the Sino–Soviet Split, 1959-1973: A New History.

A Misunderstood Friendship, co-authored by Zhihua Shen and Yafeng Xia, is the first book-length history of the China-DPRK relationship to appear in English. Shen and Xia draw on previously untapped primary source materials to offer a unique account of the China-North Korean relationship, uncovering tensions and rivalries that shed new light on the ties between these two Communist East Asian nations. They unravel the twists and turns in high-level diplomacy between China and North Korea from the late 1940s to the death of Mao Zedong in 1976, and reveal that the tensions that currently plague the alliance between the two countries have been present from the very beginning of the relationship.

Mao and the Sino-Soviet Split, co-authored by Danhui Li and Yafeng Xia, synthesizes over 20 years of research on the subject by the authors and offers a comprehensive look at the Sino-Soviet split from 1959, when visible cracks appeared in the Sino-Soviet alliance, to 1973, when China’s foreign policy changed from an “alliance with the Soviet Union to oppose the United States” to “aligning with the United States to oppose the Soviet Union.”

Moderator: Thomas Christensen


Professor Zhihua Shen, East China Normal University

Professor Danhui Li, East China Normal University

Professor Yafeng Xia, Long Island University

Zhihua Shen is the director of the Center for Cold War International History Studies at East China Normal University, Shanghai. The author of a number of major Chinese-language works on Cold War history, he is also the coauthor, with Yafeng Xia, of Mao and the Sino-Soviet Partnership, 1945‒1959: A New History (2015) and coauthor, with Danhui Li, of After Leaning to One Side: China and its Allies in the Cold War (2011).

Danhui Li is Professor of History at Institute for Studies of China’s Neighboring Countries and Regions, East China Normal University, editor-in-chief of two academic journals: Lengzhan guojishi yanjiu (Cold War International History Studies), and Bianjiang yu zhoubian wenti yanjiu (Studies of Borderlands and Neighboring Regions). A leading authority on CCP’s external relations during the Cold War, she has published extensively on Sino-Soviet relations and Sino-Vietnamese relations during the Indochina War (in Chinese, Russian and English). Most recently, she is the co-author of After Leaning to One Side: China and Its Allies in the Cold War (2011).

Yafeng Xia is Professor of History at Long Island University in New York and Senior Research Fellow, Institute for Studies of China’s Neighboring Countries and Regions at East China Normal University in Shanghai. A former Wilson Center fellow and public policy scholar, he is the author of Negotiating with the Enemy: U.S.-China Talks during the Cold War, 1949-72 (2006), and co-author of Mao and the Sino-Soviet Partnership, 1945-1959: A New History, with Zhihua Shen (2015).

UPCOMING: Monday, October 1; 4:00 PM - 5:30 PM - International Affairs Building, Room 918

"A Misunderstood Friendship: Mao Zedong, Kim Il-Sung, and Sino-North Korea Relations"

Zhihua Shen, Professor of History, East China Normal University
Yafeng Xia, Professor of History, Long Island University

Danhui Li, Professor of History, East China Normal University

Moderated by Thomas Christensen

Shen Zhihua

Co-sponsored by Columbia-Harvard China and the World Program


Abstract: This book project narrates the recent evolution of the relationship between China’s state and society over the critically important South China Sea issue. When China shifted to a more assertive stance in the South China Sea in 2007, it could implement its new policy almost entirely in secret. However, the ensuing increase in international tensions, combined with greater publicity from the emerging new media sector, soon began drawing the attention of China’s rapidly growing online population. Wary and divided over the implications of the rise of online opinion, authorities made little concerted effort to harness the power of popular networked public opinion until 2011. Since then, however, the party-state has carefully channeled public sentiments towards the South China Sea issue to deter rival claimants from opposing its incrementally expanding control of the world’s most contested maritime space. Based on qualitative and quantitative data from diverse online and offline sources, the book demonstrates how Chinese society’s increasing attention to the issue, new technologies enabling direct expression of citizens’ sentiments, and the party-state’s adaptation to the changing information environment, have facilitated popular participation in the advancement of some of the PRC’s most important foreign policy goals. In doing so, it offers a new conceptual framework for analyzing the relationship between Chinese public opinion and foreign policy in the Internet era; contributes to the ongoing debate in political science over the role of domestic audiences in international strategic communication; and adds to a more general body of scholarship on the evolution of authoritarian states in the 21st century.


Bio: Andrew Chubb (朱波) researches the relationship between Chinese public opinion and PRC foreign policy, and its implications for international politics in East Asia. A graduate of the University of Western Australia, his doctoral dissertation examined the complex and evolving linkages between Chinese popular nationalism and government policy in the South China Sea. In 2012 he initiated a survey project to measure Mainland Chinese citizens' views of maritime disputes, and a blog providing translations and analysis of Chinese discourse on contentious foreign policy issues ( 

Beyond this core focus on maritime disputes and public opinion, Andrew's research interests include strategic communication, hybridity, and Chinese Communist Party history, with publications examining the 1978-1979 Democracy Wall movement, China's shanzhai culture, military propaganda in the internet era, and the role of foreigners on PRC television. His articles can be found in Asian Security, the Journal of Contemporary China, Pacific Affairs, Information, Communication & Society, Foreign Policy, East Asia Forum and elsewhere. 

Find Dr. Chubb on Twitter - @zhubochubo

Andrew Chubb CWP

Andrew Chubb


Following Andrew's Talk we will have a special 1.5 hour guest lecture by Oystein Tunsjo on his new book "The Return of Bipolarity in World Politics: China, the United States, and Geostructural Realism" by Øystein Tunsjø. His lecture will run from 1:30pm to 3pm in Room 918 of the International Affairs Building of the Weatherhead East Asian Institute. He is a Professor at ​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​The Norwegian Institute for Defence Studies. The IFS was founded in 1980 and is part of the Norwegian Defence University College. IFS’s main activities are concentrated in the areas of research, teaching and dissemination. The institute is Norway’s foremost centre of security and defence studies.

Øystein Tunsjø

Øystein Tunsjø

The Return of Bipolarity in World Politics China, the United States, and Geostructural Realism


Abstract: Why do interstate crises occur? Existing scholarship posits that states use crises to reveal information about capabilities, resolve, and preferences. This book project instead argues that interstate crisis propensity is in part a function of the design of national security institutions, defined as the rules and procedures for deciding and executing national security strategy. When states design national security institutions that integrate defense, diplomatic, and intelligence bureaucracies into a dedicated forum for deliberation and information sharing—such as the U.S. National Security Council—domestic capacity to reveal information absent a high-stakes crisis improves. However, when states design weak or exclusionary institutions, states are prone to inadvertently miss vital intelligence or send contradictory messages. Institutional inefficiencies in signal reception and transmission increase the probability that states select into interstate crisis.

The book project tests the argument first through statistical analyses that introduce and employ an original cross-national time series dataset on national security institutions across the world from 1946 to 2012. These data include 857 unique decision-making and coordination bodies, as well as 5,339 chief executives, defense ministers, foreign ministers, and senior intelligence advisers. Critically, they describe all known instances of national security councils across the world since World War II. The findings demonstrate a strong, negative relationship between the strength of national security institutions and propensity for interstate crisis. Complementary qualitative analysis illustrates the proposed signaling mechanisms of the theory, leveraging a wealth of new archival and interview evidence from China, Taiwan, India, Pakistan, Russia, and the United States.


Bio: Tyler Jost (江泰乐) is a postdoctoral research associate in the China and the World Program and a postdoctoral research fellow in the International Security Program at the Harvard Kennedy School. His research focuses on national security decision-making, bureaucratic politics, and Chinese foreign policy. Dr. Jost completed his doctoral degree in the Department of Government at Harvard University in 2018. His book project examines domestic institutions designed to decide and coordinate national security policy, such as the U.S. National Security Council. Dr. Jost’s research has been supported by the Smith Richardson Foundation, the U.S. Institute of Peace, and the Fairbank Center for Chinese Studies. He completed his undergraduate studies at West Point and served as an intelligence officer with assignments to Afghanistan, U.S. Cyber Command, and the Office of the Secretary of Defense. Dr. Jost will join the Brown University Department of Political Science and Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs as an assistant professor in July 2019.

Tyler Jost Photo


Abstract: As the U.S. Chief of Mission in Taiwan from 2015 to 2018, Kin Moy was responsible for executing U.S. policy in Taiwan during the Obama and Trump administrations.  His tenure in Taiwan overlapped the presidencies of Ma Ying-jeou and Tsai Ing-wen.  He will discuss U.S. goals and achievements in Taiwan during this period, the evolution of our multi-dimensional relationship with Taiwan and its significance to U.S. policy in Asia, and prospects and challenges for the future of American cross-Strait diplomacy.   


Bio: Mr. Kin W. Moy was the Director of the American Institute in Taiwan from June 2015 to July 2018

Mr. Moy has been in the United States Foreign Service for over twenty years, and has extensive experience working in and on the Asia-Pacific region.  Mr. Moy’s most recent diplomatic assignment was at the Department of State in Washington, DC, where he served as Deputy Assistant Secretary of State in the Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs, with responsibility for China, Mongolia, and Taiwan.  Prior to that assignment, he served as Deputy Executive Secretary in the Office of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.  He also served as Director of the Executive Secretariat Staff in the Office of Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, Deputy Director of the Office of Maritime Southeast Asia, Desk Officer in the Office of Chinese and Mongolian Affairs, and Special Assistant in the Executive Secretariat in the Office of Secretary of State Madeleine Albright.

In addition to his Washington assignments, Mr. Moy has served in the U.S. Embassy in Beijing, the U.S. Embassy in Seoul, and the U.S. Consulate in Busan.

Mr. Moy is a career member of the Senior Foreign Service and holds the personal rank of Minister Counselor.  He graduated from Columbia University and the University of Minnesota, and is a Mandarin speaker.  Mr. Moy is accompanied by his wife Kathy Chen and their four children.

Kin Moy


NOV 30, 2018

Two Hegemonic Restructuring Projects in Diachronic Perspective: America’s Marshall Plan (1948-1951) and China’s Belt & Road Initiative (2013-)

One-day conference on November 30th, 2018 on the topic of “Two Hegemonic Restructuring Projects in Diachronic Perspective: America’s Marshall Plan (1948-1951) and China’s Belt & Road Initiative (2013-).”  The conference will bring together scholars of International Relations and History from China, Europe, and the United States to examine the historical legacy and contemporary relevance of the US-led European Recovery Plan (Marshall Plan) of the 1940s and the Chinese-led Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) of the present day.

As the global and regional hegemons of the twentieth century retreat from investing in development around the world, China marches on with the ambitious global program known as the Belt and Road Initiative. President Xi Jinping launched the BRI in 2013 to connect Eurasian economies through infrastructure, trade and investment. Extending to 68 countries or regions covering a vast area of Eurasia, including Central and Southeast Asia, Eastern and Western Europe, and parts of the Middle East, Africa and Oceania, the BRI seeks to create the ports, roads and rail and telecommunications links for a modern-day Silk Road. The economic promises and perils of the BRI are still in the making, but its political message is obvious: China is attempting to establish a new model of global leadership in its own image.

The BRI is often compared to the European Recovery Plan, which helped rebuild Western Europe after the Second World War. This conference starts by taking this juxtaposition seriously to review the ways in which nation-states have attempted to exercise global leadership since the 1940s.

We suggest that it is important to understand the original goals of regional re-structuring in the wake of World War II, and to take seriously what nations outside of the West – the USSR chief among them – claimed: that socialist planning models and Soviet aid were specular to the Western capitalist intervention. We suggest, further, that it is not that there were no major development projects in the period between the Marshall Plan and the present, including, of course, IMF and World Bank Projects, initiatives coming out of the European Union, and projects led by European nations such as the German Federal Republic and the German Democratic Republic, as well as by Japan.

What sets apart the BRI from other redevelopment projects since the Marshall Plan, however, is its intensity and scope of investment and branding that merge economic investment and restructuring with strong cultural messaging to re-develop a non-Western-centric global system of communication, trade, and post-capitalist normative international relations. We also underscore its timing, in that the BRI has emerged following the end of a short but prolific post-Cold War period (circa1990 to 2010) in which multilateral diplomacy, networked communications, and international non-governmental organizations sought to give a new soft-power order to international governance.

We thus ask: Is the BRI a response to —or an outcome of — the failure of this multilateral liberal global order, which was concerned with expanding neo-liberal markets globally, and, as a support, democracy-building, communicating through cyber technology, and U.S.- and NATO-led regional wars and policing actions?

The goal of the conference is to offer a critical historical analysis of this new hegemonic project and the changing nature of building international influence from the mid-twentieth to the early twenty-first century. By comparing the BRI with the Marshall Plan, we renew the process of revising interpretations of the Marshall Plan moment, the last significant episode of which occurred in the 1990s in the wake of the break-up of the USSR, as U.S. and European historians converged in terms of thinking about the European Recovery Plan as the first project of “global capitalist restructuring.” We will address the question of whether the BRI represents analogously the first post-capitalist or post-Western global restructuring project, following the relative decline of the US and Europe and the rise of “the Rest.”

The conference will be preceded by a dinner for all participants on Thursday, November 29th, followed by a full-day meeting on November 30th. We do not require any formal papers, and the conference attendance will be by invitation only. Our goal is to have a frank and engaged conversation on the subject of historical and contemporary hegemonic restructuring.

List of Participants

Charles K. Armstrong, The Korea Foundation Professor of Korean Studies in the Social Sciences, Columbia University

Thomas Christensen, Professor of International and Public Affairs, Columbia University

Victoria de Grazia, Moore Collegiate Professor of History, Columbia University

Dong Xiangrong, Professor at the National Institute of International Strategy, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences

Barry Eichengreen, George C. Pardee and Helen N. Pardee Professor of Economics and Political Science, University of California Berkeley

Peter Katzenstein, Walter S. Carpenter, Jr. Professor of International Studies at Cornell

Li Guoqiang,Professor at the Institute of Chinese Borderland Studies, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences

Charles Maier, Leverett Saltonstall Professor History, Harvard University

Andrew Nathan, Professor of Political Science, Columbia University

Jack Snyder, Robert and Renée Belfer Professor of International Relations at Columbia University

Gayatri Spivak, University Professor, Columbia University

Joseph Stiglitz, University Professor, Columbia University

Oliver Stuenkel, Associate Professor of International Relations at the Getulio Vargas Foundation, Sao Paulo

Adam Tooze, Kathryn and Shelby Cullom Davis Professor of History, Columbia University

Wang Yiwei, Professor of International Relations, Renmin University


230917_CBRI Charts_Infographic Prospects_FA.jpg


Marshall Plan - BRI conference Nov 30 2018 Columbia Flyer


Marshall Plan - BRI conference Nov 30 2018 Columbia Agenda


  • Weatherhead East Asian Institute, Columbia University (invited co-sponsor)

  • European Institute, Columbia University (co-sponsor)

  • Institute for Social and Economic Research and Policy, Columbia University (co-sponsor)

  • China and the World Program (co-sponsor)


Abstract: With the stunning success of the East Asian newly industrializing economies during the post-war era, Chinese policy-makers looked to corporate models in Japan as they sought to reform and revitalize the country’s largest state-owned enterprises. East Asian developmental states pioneered enterprise groups (qiye jituan): a pyramidal form of corporate organization linking production units in different localities, finance companies, and research institutions together under a set of “core” enterprises. Through a series of international exchanges beginning in the late 1970s, Chinese officials and economists studied the structure and operations of Japanese enterprise groups. Chinese participants published detailed studies on the organizational structure and management of enterprise groups and recommendations for how these corporate forms could be adapted to build China's national champions. I use archival sources to document these exchanges, explore their impact on the reform of China’s state-owned enterprises, and critically assess the results of Chinese enterprise group experimentation. This study highlights the understudied influence of international models and exchanges during China's early economic reform, revealing the syncretic process by which Chinese policy-makers explored and adapted different forms of corporate organization to address the challenges of domestic development and global competition.


Bio: Wendy Leutert (吕丽云) is a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Columbia-Harvard China and the World Program (2018-2019). Her research interests are in comparative and international political economy, with an emphasis on state-business relations and the reform and globalization of China’s state-owned enterprises. Her dissertation and first book project examine the impact of leadership in the public sector on economic reform and institutional change in China. At CWP, she will work on a second project titled “The International Origins of China’s National Champions,” which analyzes how Chinese state-owned enterprises have transformed from state-run factories during the Mao era to today’s partially-privatized multinational corporations. In it, she argues that China’s national champions have emerged from both domestic experimentation and more than six decades of sustained engagement with international models and actors. 

Her work has been supported by the U.S. Department of Education through the Fulbright-Hays Doctoral Dissertation Research Abroad and the Foreign Language and Area Studies Fellowship Programs, the Brookings-Tsinghua U.S. Exchange Fellowship Program funded by the Ford Foundation, the Smith Richardson Foundation, the Chinese Scholarship Council, the Cornell East Asia Program and others. Her research is forthcoming or has been published in The China QuarterlyChina Perspectives, and Asia Policy.

Before joining CWP, Wendy was a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Pennsylvania's Center for the Study of Contemporary China (2017-2018), a visiting researcher at Peking University (2013-2016), and a visiting researcher at the Brookings Institution and the Brookings-Tsinghua Center for Public Policy (2014- 2015). Previously, she worked for International Crisis Group in Beijing. Wendy holds a Ph.D. and a MA in government from Cornell University, a MA in international relations from Tsinghua University, and a BA with honors in both political science and philosophy from Wellesley College.

Wendy Leutert Headshot


Abstract: When and why do authoritarian states allow or even promote domestic media coverage of foreign disputes, compared to when they discourage or censor such coverage? As much as domestic survival matters for authoritarian leaders, the frequent involvement of authoritarian states in some of the world’s most dangerous disputes calls for a better understanding of their domestic constraints and motivations. These low-cost, low-risk “foreign influence campaigns” are also labelled by U.S. leaders as pertinent to national security that requires a deeper understanding. Leveraging on extensive fieldwork and original sources, Wang will talk about her book project that analyzes 19 Chinese diplomatic crises precipitated by territorial disputes to explain why and how authoritarian states manage public opinion about such disputes. Focusing on the 2016 Sino-Philippines arbitration case on the South China Sea dispute, Wang illustrates how Beijing uses a media campaign counterintuitively to mollify a militant public opinion and to pave the way for a moderate foreign policy.

Bio: Yaping “Frances” Wang is a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Notre Dame’s International Security Center. She received her Ph.D. in Politics from the University of Virginia. She was previously a predoctoral fellow at the Institute for Security and Conflict Studies of the George Washington University and a Minerva-USIP scholar. She studies interstate conflicts, with a focus on public opinion, authoritarian politics, and international relations in East Asia. Her book project examines authoritarian media on foreign policy issues and draws upon rare access in field work in China and Vietnam, as well as computer-assisted text analysis of the official Chinese newspaper People’s Daily. Wang holds a joint Master’s degree in Comparative Politics and International Affairs from George Washington University and National University of Singapore.

Yaping Wang Notre Dame CWP


Abstract: This lecture will look at how and why China has moved from just controlling domestic internet to shaping the global internet--through cyber diplomacy and state behavior; development of next generation technologies and standards; and export of surveillance and other technologies

Bio: Adam Segal is the Ira A. Lipman chair in emerging technologies and national security and director of the Digital and Cyberspace Policy Program at the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR). An expert on security issues, technology development, and Chinese domestic and foreign policy, Segal was the project director for the CFR-sponsored Independent Task Force report Defending an Open, Global, Secure, and Resilient Internet. His book The Hacked World Order: How Nations Fight, Trade, Maneuver, and Manipulate in the Digital Age(PublicAffairs, 2016) describes the increasingly contentious geopolitics of cyberspace. His work has appeared in the Financial TimesThe EconomistForeign PolicyThe Wall Street Journal, and Foreign Affairs, among others. He currently writes for the blog, “Net Politics.”

Before coming to CFR, Segal was an arms control analyst for the China Project at the Union of Concerned Scientists. There, he wrote about missile defense, nuclear weapons, and Asian security issues. He has been a visiting scholar at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Center for International Studies, the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences, and Tsinghua University in Beijing. He has taught at Vassar College and Columbia University. Segal is the author of Advantage: How American Innovation Can Overcome the Asian Challenge (W.W. Norton, 2011) and Digital Dragon: High-Technology Enterprises in China (Cornell University Press, 2003), as well as several articles and book chapters on Chinese technology policy.

Segal has a BA and PhD in government from Cornell University, and an MA in international relations from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University.


Columbia University, adjunct
Cyber Conflict Studies Association, board member
Stanford University, affiliate


Adam Segal CFR


Abstract: Relations between the United States and China today are more competitive and tense than any other time since the 1979 normalization of diplomatic relations, except perhaps after the 1989 Tiananmen Incident.   And this time the deterioration of relations has not been caused by a single incident but is systemic and broad.  China’s international and domestic overreaching has provoked a widespread backlash not just in the United States, but in many other advanced economies as well.   Within the United States, there is talk about protecting ourselves from the perceived China threat by decoupling our intertwined economies, social and educational ties are also under strain, and Chinese and Chinese-Americans are starting to feel under suspicion.    How can the two countries stabilize relations and reverse this downward spiral? 

Bio: Susan Shirk is research professor and chair of the 21st Century China Center at the School. She is one of the most influential experts working on U.S.-China relations and Chinese politics.

Shirk’s book “China: Fragile Superpower” helped frame the policy debate on China in the U.S. and other countries. Her articles have appeared in leading academic publications in the fields of political science, international relations and China studies, and her views on a range of issues relating to modern Chinese politics are highly sought.

She previously served as deputy assistant secretary of state (1997-2000), responsible for U.S. policy toward China, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Mongolia and she founded and continues to lead the Northeast Asia Cooperation Dialogue, an unofficial forum for discussions of security issues.

Director emeritus and advisory board chair of the University of California Institute on Global Conflict and Cooperation, Shirk served as a member of the U.S. Defense Policy board, the board of governors for the East-West Center (Hawaii), the board of trustees of the U.S.-Japan Foundation and the board of directors of the National Committee on United States-China Relations. 

She was awarded the 2015 Roger Revelle Medal (video).

Education and CV

Ph.D., Political Science, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1974
M.A., Asian Studies, University of California, Berkeley, 1968
B.A., Political Science, Mount Holyoke College, 1967
Critical Languages Program, Princeton University, 1965-66

Susan Shirk UCSD


Abstract: Political elites in Western democracies have shown intensifying concern about "influence operations" of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) in recent years. Is this the result of increasing CCP activity, or is it more a function of geopolitical rivalry or opportunistic political posturing? Do the overseas political activities of the CCP and its supporters constitute national security risks, or are they matters of democratic rights and academic freedoms? How can democracies deal with the domestic challenges posed by an unreformed, increasingly authoritarian Leninist party-state with expanding overseas interests, without adopting its view of the world or undermining the political freedoms by which they distinguish themselves? I argue answering these questions depends on carefully disaggregating the array of issues commonly rolled together under often-misleading singular labels such as "Chinese influence." Using the case of Australia, I illustrate the issues' varying nature, causes, actors involved, and relationship with the law and key democratic rights, as well as the dangers involved in responding. Based on more than 75 interviews with current and former government officials, researchers, university administrators, lawyers, journalists, human rights activists, and students, I suggest a set of options for managing these challenges to democracy.


  • Researches the relationship between Chinese public opinion and PRC foreign policy, and its implications for international politics in East Asia.

  • His doctoral dissertation examined the complex and evolving linkages between Chinese popular nationalism and government policy in the South China Sea. In 2012 he initiated a survey project to measure Mainland Chinese citizens' views of maritime disputes, and a blog providing translations and analysis of Chinese discourse on contentious foreign policy issues.

  • A PhD graduate of the University of Western Australia.

  • Publications examining the 1978-1979 Democracy Wall movement, China's shanzhai culture, military propaganda in the internet era, and the role of foreigners on PRC television. His articles can be found in Asian Security, the Journal of Contemporary China, Pacific Affairs, Information, Communication & Society, Foreign Policy, East Asia Forum etc.

  • Andrew is in the first year of a three year British Academy fellowship based at Lancaster University in the UK, where he has also been appointed as a Lecturer. He is also an Adjunct Associate Research Scholar in the Columbia-Harvard China and the World Program.


Andrew Chubb CWP Fellow NYC


"China’s Approach(es) to International Order(s)”. This lecture argues that there is no single international order, but multiple often contradictory orders (e.g. military, trade, finance, information, environmental, political, social etc) and China’s peformance in each has to be examined before coming to any conclusions about its challenged to a so-called “rules-based order". 

Bio: Alastair Iain Johnston (PhD University of Michigan, 1993) is the Gov. James Albert Noe and Linda Noe Laine Professor of China in World Affairs in the Government Department at Harvard University. He has written on socialization theory, identity and political behavior, and strategic culture, mostly with application to the study of East Asian international relations and Chinese foreign policy. Johnston is the author of Cultural Realism: Strategic Culture and Grand Strategy in Chinese History (Princeton 1995) and Social States: China in International Institutions, 1980-2000 (Princeton University Press, 2008), and is co-editor of Engaging China: The Management of an Emerging Power (Routledge 1999), New Directions in the Study of China’s Foreign Policy (Stanford 2006), Crafting Cooperation: Regional Institutions in Comparative Perspective(Cambridge 2007), Measuring Identity: A Guide for Social Scientists (Cambridge 2009), and Perception and Misperception in American and Chinese Views of the Other (Carnegie Endowment for International Peace 2015).


Iain Johnston Harvard University 2


CWP External Agenda 2019 NYC


Bio: Susan A. Thornton is a retired senior diplomat with extensive experience in Eurasia and East Asia.  She is currently a Senior Fellow and Research Scholar at the Yale University Paul Tsai China Center and a Non-Resident Fellow at the Brookings Institution.  Until July 2018, she was Acting Assistant Secretary for East Asian and Pacific Affairs at the Department of State and led East Asia policy making amid crises with North Korea, escalating trade tensions with China, and a fast-changing international environment.  In previous State Department roles, Ms. Thornton worked on China and Korea policy, including stabilizing relations with Taiwan, the US-China Cyber Agreement, the Paris Climate Accord and the Agreed Framework on North Korean denuclearization. In overseas postings in Central Asia, Russia, the Caucasus and China, Ms. Thornton’s leadership furthered U.S. interests and influence in a host of difficult operating environments. Ms. Thornton received her MA in International Relations from Johns Hopkins SAIS and her BA from Bowdoin College in Economics and Russian. Apart from her foreign policy work, Ms. Thornton devotes her spare time to community, education, fresh food and connecting with nature on her family farm in Lisbon, Maine.


Susan Thornton State Yale University


Abstract: After a war breaks out, what factors influence the warring parties’ de- cisions about whether to talk to their enemy, and when may their posi- tion on wartime diplomacy change? How do we get from only fighting to also talking? In The Costs of Conversation, Oriana Skylar Mastro argues that states are primarily concerned with the strategic costs of conversation, and these costs need to be low before combatants are willing to engage in direct talks with their enemy. Specifically, Mastro writes, leaders look to two factors when determining the probable strategic costs of demon- strating a willingness to talk: the likelihood the enemy will interpret openness to diplomacy as a sign of weakness, and how the enemy may change its strategy in response to such an interpretation. Only if a state thinks it has demonstrated adequate strength and resiliency to avoid the inference of weakness, and believes that its enemy has limited ca- pacity to escalate or intensify the war, will it be open to talking with the enemy. Through four primary case studies—North Vietnamese diplomatic decisions during the Vietnam War, those of China in the Korean War and Sino-Indian War, and Indian diplomatic decision making in the latter conflict—The Costs of Conversation demonstrates that the costly conversations thesis best explains the timing and nature of countries’ approach to wartime talks, and therefore when peace talks begin. As a result, Mastro’s findings have significant theoretical and practical implications for war duration and termination, as well as for military strategy, diplomacy, and mediation.

Bio: I am an assistant professor of security studies at the Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University where my research addresses critical questions at the intersection of interstate conflict, great power relations, and the challenges of rising powers – with a focus on China and East Asian security. Specifically, I look at how perceptions of power impact the process and precursors to conflict, such as military competition and coercion. This year, I am also a Jeane Kirkpatrick Scholar at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) where I am working on a book about China's challenge to U.S. primacy. I also continue to serve as an officer in the United States Air Force Reserve. I am the author of the forthcoming Cornell University Press book The Costs of Conversation: Obstacles to Peace Talks in Wartime. I have a B.A. in East Asian Studies from Stanford University and an M.A. and Ph.D. in Politics from Princeton University. 


Oriana Skylar Mastro