As China seeks a more active global role, China’s impact on international order has become an endless source of debate and speculation in the international community.  This project aims to provide an updated analysis of Chinese visions of international order. Chinese political and intellectual elites envision China might take different roles in the emerging order. In particular, China could become a new hegemonic leader, a co-leader, a supporter or a shirker. The project provides a framework to explain why Chinese might have different visions of international order. At the macro level, the interaction of two factors (power and legitimacy) has shaped the emergence of four ideal-type visions of international order. At the micro-level, the relationship between knowledge and power has shaped how Chinese intellectuals position themselves in a rapid changing society. Ideology and theoretical orientation also shape the policy preference of leaders and intellectuals.


Xiaoyu Pu is an associate professor and director of graduate studies in the Political Science Department at the University of Nevada, Reno. He is a Public Intellectuals Program fellow with the National Committee on United States-China Relations and a non-resident senior fellow with the Inter-American Dialogue in Washington, D.C. In the 2012-13 academic year, Pu was a postdoctoral fellow in the Princeton-Harvard China and the World Program at Princeton University. In 2016, he was a Stanton Fellow at Fundação Getulio Vargas (FGV) in Brazil. Pu is the author of Rebranding China: Contested Status Signaling in the Changing Global Order (The Studies in Asian Security Series, Stanford University Press, 2019). His research has appeared in International Security, International Affairs, The China Quarterly and The Chinese Journal of International Politics.