Publisher(s): China Academic Journals (CD Edition) Electronic Publishing House Co., Ltd.
First Published: 2021.01.19
Discipline(s): Politics/ Military Affairs/ Law
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China-US Relations in the New Era: Competition and Cooperation series consist of two volumes. This volume shares scholars’ views on China-US relations from angles such as theoretical research, regional strategies, as well as China, the US and other parties. Excellent papers are selected from The Chinese Journal of American Studies, World Economics and Politics, International Economic Review, and other journals. This Chinese-English bilingual e-book series include 85 papers in total by professionals such as Xia Liping, Dean of the Institute of International and Public Affairs of Tongji University, Wu Xinbo, Director of the Center for American Studies of Fudan University, and Zou Zhibo, Deputy Director of the Institute of World Economics and Politics of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences. The number of Chinese characters totals around 1,140,000 and that of English words totals roughly 798,000.
1. Global symbiosis system theory and the construction of a new model of major-country relations between China and the United States ①
The Chinese Journal of American Studies,Part 1: Theoretical Research,Vol 31,No. 01
All things in the global system are interrelated, interacted, interplayed and mutually transformational. The interdependence theory of global symbiosis system theory indicates the necessity to optimize this global system. The interdependence between China and the United States is on the rise in the global system, which is laying a foundation for a new model of major-country relations between China and the United States. For constructing this new model of major-country relations, to establish a new kind of stable strategic relationship is a necessary condition. The way of gaming and adjusting between these two strategic cultures is the critical path to such construction.
2. Paradigm shifts in the study of Sino-U.S. relations in the post-Cold War era and their implications: commemorating the 40th anniversary of the establishment of Sino-U.S. diplomatic relations
World Economics and Politics,Part 1: Theoretical Research,No. 02
Since the early 1990s, the study of Sino-U.S. relations in China has gone through the stages of raising, growing, and flourishing. The process has also witnessed notable shifts in the research paradigm in the following ways: the research context has shifted from concentrating on the bilateral context to paying extra attention to the multilateral; the research perspective has shifted from exclusively on the U.S. side to looking at both China and the U.S.; the research orientation has shifted from relations of interests orientated to power-balance orientated; the research preference has shifted from stressing on cooperation to giving consideration to both cooperation and competition; the analysis logic has shifted from taking account of the impact of systemic level on unit-level to vice versa; the research emphasis has shifted from the focus on foreign strategy and policy to exploring respective domestic political, economic, social, and cultural factors; and the research method has shifted from empirical approaches to IR theories and methodological innovations. As a matter of fact, the paradigm shifts as described above stand as a reflection of a series of changes in China and the U.S., as well as the bilateral relations, including the changes of power balance, foreign policy-making circumstances on both sides, primary motives behind their respective approaches to the bilateral relationship, patterns of interactions between the two countries, and the impact of Sino-U.S. relationship on international affairs. Furthermore, changes occurred to China, the U.S., as well as their bilateral ties also mirror some of the major adjustments in international politics in the post-Cold War era, such as shifting power balance among major powers, changing pattern of interactions between the East and the West, salience of global governance issues, as well as the accelerating evolution in the international system and international order.
3. China-US game and China’s revival: in the perspective of the comparative strength changes of the two countries
Northeast Asia Forum,Part 1: Theoretical Research,Vol 28,No. 03
The global landscape in 2018 is complex and changeable. Unilateralism and trade protectionism are on the rise, and the overall growth of the global economy is falling. The escalating China-US trade conflict has further deepened the uncertainty of the world’s political and economic situation. The comparative strength changes between China and the US have been the focus of global public opinion in the past decade, but few studies have seen the subtlety of the power gap between China and the US. Based on the China-US trade friction, this paper objectively compared the strength changes of China and the US and discussed the strategic direction of the China-US game. This paper believes that the China-US trade dispute is not only a confrontation in the field of economy and trade, but also a comprehensive game involving all kinds of strengths of the two countries. Although the heads of the two sides have reached a consensus to suspend the increase of tariffs, the China-US trade dispute is still a long-term and serious issue. China should be fully prepared to launch a game against the US with strategic endurance, build a global innovation engine, establish a new international cooperation network, and ultimately achieve the great rise of the country.
Northeast Asia Forum,Part 1: Theoretical Research,Vol 23,No. 04
U.S. dollar standard, being the foundation of the Sino-U.S. dual loop of trade and capital, is a strong proof of the asymmetric interdependence between the U.S., a “trading state,” and China, a “financial state.” U.S. dollar standard system has significant impact on Sino-U.S. trade and financial imbalance, manifesting the asymmetric Sino-U.S. “balance of finance terror.” After the global financial crisis, U.S. dollar standard has been reinforced instead of being weakened and will still persist. China should reduce its dependence on U.S. dollar standard under the current policy framework. Therefore, the change of development strategy and the process of financial transformation should be accelerated without delay.
5. The strategic thinking of unilateral consensus and the evolution of Sino-U.S. strategic cooperation ①
The Chinese Journal of American Studies,Part 1: Theoretical Research,Vol 31,No. 05
To get to know the strategic consensus between the two great powers is the basic way of understanding Sino-U.S. strategic cooperation. The paper intends to explore China’s strategic thinking and its international political consequences in the process of Sino-U.S. strategic cooperation. China demonstrates such traits of its strategic thinking as seeking strategic consensus, overall view of the situation, dialectical harmony in the past few decades when dealing with the relations with the U.S. The “shelving” thinking used in resolving the Taiwan question has produced the international political effect of having a co-existence of cooperation and conflict. It is the power structure and its changes between China and the U.S. that result in the creation and evolution of Chinese unilateral consensus and then the development of cooperation and conflict between the two countries.
The Chinese Journal of American Studies,Part 1: Theoretical Research,Vol 31,No. 06
Chinese and American exceptionalisms situate on the different ends of a spectrum. While American exceptionalism rests on the extraordinary superiority of the United States, Chinese exceptionalism is based on uniqueness of China. American exceptionalism insists that the American mode of development is the best in the world and universally applicable, so it will be better to follow its example for other countries in an effort of Americanization; while Chinese exceptionalism, favoring a scenario of leaving me alone instead, denies the universal applicability of many international concepts and norms. Therefore, it refuses to follow others and vise versa. The differences between those two exceptionalisms reflect divergent strategic thinking of China and the United States on their preferences of defining strategic goals, threats, means, principles, linchpins, and avoidance of strategic taboos. To a great extent, these divergent exceptionalisms derive from the different ways of thinking between Chinese and American people. Relatively speaking, Chinese prefer a dialectic, relational, organic and outside-in way of thinking, while Americans favor a logical, generic, mechanical and inside-out way of thinking.
Foreign Affairs Review,Part 1: Theoretical Research,Vol 31,No. 07
After over 40 years’ development, the U.S.-China relationship is now facing a new phase. The challenge confronting both sides is that whether they can establish a long-lasting, stable strategic relation, gradually reduce strategic suspicion and accumulate mutual trust during their cooperation. Clarifying the sources and developments of the strategic stability between the U.S. and China, this paper analyzes the challenges faced and the ways to improve such stability.
Foreign Affairs Review,Part 1: Theoretical Research,Vol 34,No. 08
The constructive and productive role of language has been increasingly appreciated since the Third Great Debate in late 1980s. However, most of such research focuses on what language constructs, namely, rule, norms and identity, and pays little attention to the mechanism through which the constructive function of language is realized. Pervasive in language, metaphors are basic tools for human cognition and can shed light on that mechanism. Drawing on cognitive linguistics and political psychology, this paper proposes a framework for analyzing the role of metaphors in constructing foreign policy. Two contrasting metaphors of “stakeholder” and “Thucydides’s Trap” are examined within the framework, which reveals that these different metaphors help shape different foreign policies. Finally, we analyze the metaphor of “new model of major-country relationship” and provide suggestions for its diffusion so as to effectively frame Sino-U.S. relations.
World Economics and Politics,Part 1: Theoretical Research,No. 09
Traditional power transition theory claims that power parity generates conflicts between the hegemonic power and a rising power. Based on this problematic assertion, many believe that the Sino-U.S. relations are now ripe for rivalry. While power shifting can incur many difficulties, the hegemonic power and a rising power may find it necessary to work together in facing and solving public problems. This constitutes a unique feature that separates the Sino-U.S. relations from precedent dyads of the hegemon and a rising power. The author contends that as competitive strategy dominated in pre-1945 world, coupled with little room for international coordination, the tragedy of the hegemony and a rising power was much more likely than otherwise would be. As it has evolved to a less competitive world since 1945, players began to learn and adopt a mixed strategy of hedging. As a result, although an optimal solution is difficult to achieve, the worst scenario can be avoided. An empirical investigation goes to the early Anglo-American relations concerning the continental America, from which both the U.S. and China can learn a lesson to live with current trends of power shifting. Another empirical study follows to refute the irresponsible voices augmenting the Sino-U.S. disagreement and to find some ways to manage the Sino-U.S. power shifting situation.
10. Uncertainty, risk management and trust decision-making: a study based on Sino-U.S. strategic relations
World Economics and Politics,Part 1: Theoretical Research,No. 10
Trust is a conundrum in the research on international relations. International trust building can be understood as an issue of trust decision-making under the condition of international politics. To manage the uncertainty and its risk, which is the core in trust decision-making, is crucial for understanding relevant behaviors. After reviewing recent studies on trust, this paper proposed a synthetic perspective on trust decision-making, in which the rational choice path and social psychological path were synthesized by the guidance of analytic eclecticism. Conditioned by international anarchy, states, in order to effectively manage risk, have to clarify the “trust threshold,” which consists of trust demands, trust guarantee and trust adjustment. Trust threshold is essentially an issue of assessment based on rationality. However, besides practical strategic interests as the basis, the objects that states assess also include the trustworthiness defined by irrational factors, such as social interactions, ideologies and cultural traditions. The proceedings of Sino-U.S. strategic interactions typically elaborates the complicated risk combinations posed by the above-mentioned elements and their challenges towards trust decision-making in the specific situation consisted of different international structures and contrast relations of national strength. Based on the past experiences, the writer put forward the trust building path taking the strengthening of Sino-U.S. trust demands as the focus in the face of the increasing Sino-U.S. strategic distrust.
11. An analysis of the inapplicability of Thucydides trap for the development of Sino-US relationship
Cass Journal of Political Science,Part 1: Theoretical Research,No. 11
In recent years, some Western scholars advocate the notion of Thucydides trap as the premise of the prediction that a war is doomed to break out between China and the United States in the process of power transition around the world. Sourced from the theory of power transition and security dilemma, the theory of Thucydides trap is based upon three prerequisite conditions. The first is the inevitability that emerging countries will resort to military force to change the existing international system, the second is the anarchy of the international system, and the third is the presumption that the costs of the hegemonic war outweigh the benefits. However, all these preconditions are unmatched for the objective reality of world politics and contrary to the practices of China’s peaceful development as well as the mainstream trend of Sino-US relationship. Therefore, it is an essential fallacy to apply the notion of Thucydides trap mechanically for the analytic research on the future relation between China and the US.
12. Sino-US institutional competition during the transformation period of the international order—an analysis based on the institutional balancing theory
Foreign Affairs Review,Part 1: Theoretical Research,Vol 36,No. 12
Against the backdrop of the deepening of globalization and economic interdependence, in addition to the traditional strategy of military balancing, great powers have also conducted strategic interactions and competitions in the form of both inclusive and exclusive institutional balancing strategies in international politics. In a transitional international order, the institutional balancing between a dominant power and a rising power tends to intensify. This paper focuses on studying why China, as a rising power, has chosen an inclusive institutional balancing strategy to maintain the existing international order and the United States, as a dominant power or status quo state, has adopted an exclusive institutional balancing strategy aimed at undermining the existing international order. This paper argues that states’ preferences for different institutional balancing strategies are affected by institutional dividends. In other words, these states make rational choices based on cost-benefit calculations in the process of institutional competition. As its institutional dividend declines continuously, the United States is more likely to adopt an exclusive institutional balancing strategy that can challenge the existing international order, including withdrawing from the existing multilateral institutions and establishing new international institutions in its favor. On the contrary, China is more likely to choose an inclusive institutional balancing strategy that can maintain the existing international order as its institutional dividend rises. Two cases, namely, the exclusive institutional balancing implemented by the Obama administration during the establishment of the TPP and the inclusive institutional balancing adopted by China in establishing the AIIB, will be cited to further examine the theoretical model of “institutional dividends—institutional balancing.” This paper concludes that institutional balancing will become a new form of strategic interactions between China and the United States in the transformation of the international order in the 21st century.