Chinese security has become a key focus after the Cold War. In just a few decades, China has gone from an obscure position as a closed communist developing country with little integration into international institutions over being designated a prospective strategic partner of the United States to being seen as Washington’s principal strategic opponent. Despite these vast changes in perspective on China’s international role and interests, China is still seen as an enigmatic security actor with hidden agendas and a vast chasm between Beijing’s official policies and strategic practices.
The great interest in Chinese security is reflected in the fact that it is hard to find a university program across the world which does not have this topic as part of their teaching and research agenda. Similarly, there is a vast literature on the topic that addresses Chinese security from a great variety of theoretical and empirical angles – including all schools of international relations, foreign policy analysis, strategic studies and also think-tank literature. This large body of academic research has not yet been compiled and analysed with the aim to identify the major works that have generated key debates in this young field of scholarly work on China security studies. A major works collection would make a significant contribution to shaping this young and growing field.
The existing literature, in its ambition to make sense of Chinese security strategic thinking and behaviour, focuses on understanding Chinese strategic intentions, power tools, instruments of influence and threat perceptions and which interests and world views they are based on. We include a diverse range of contributions from America, Australia, Europe and Japan to cover all major regional perspectives. We also include major theoretical approaches, such as realist and liberal approaches to Chinese security, English school contributions and constructivist analyses. Each volume will also include work written by Chinese scholars, including analysts in a policy-making role to cover the Chinese perspectives on Chinese security. The scholarly debates that help clarify and understand Chinese security strategies focus first on conceptual debates about similarities and differences between Chinese security strategic thinking compared to the thinking dominating Western tradition and practice. A second theme is China’s national security priorities in Asia and the nexus between China’s homeland security (terrorism and separatism) and international relations. A third theme is China’s approach to the management of international security affairs in the political, economic and military sector, as an emerging great power with increasingly global security interests. Finally, a fourth theme is the making of China’s national security policy, which involves analyses of the main institutions and actors and how they interact in a complex political system characterized by a relative lack of transparency.
Table of Contents
Volume 1: Debates on China’s Security Strategy
Revisionist vs status quo power
- Alastair Iain Johnston, ‘Is China a Status Quo Power?’, International Security, 27, 4 2003, 5-56.
- John J. Mearsheimer, ‘Great Power Politics in the Twenty-first Century’, The Tragedy of Great Power Politics (London: W. W. Norton & Co., 2001), pp. 360-402.
- Yuan-Kuan Wang, ‘Offensive Realism and the Rise of China’, Issues and Studies, 40, 1, 2004, 173-201.
- Zheng Bijian, ‘China’s "Peaceful Rise" to Great Power Status’, Foreign Affairs, September/October 2005.
- François Godement, ‘Expanded Ambitions, Shrinking Achievements: China and the Global Order", ECFR Policy Brief, March 2017.
- William A. Callahan, ‘Chinese Visions of World Order: Post-hegemonic or a New Hegemony?’, International Studies Review, 10, 4, 2008, 749-761.
- Suisheng Zhao, ‘Rethinking the Chinese World Order: The Imperial Cycle and the Rise of China’, Journal of Contemporary China, 24, 96, 2015, 961-982.
- Allen Carlson, 'Moving Beyond Sovereignty? A Brief Consideration of Recent Changes in China's Approach to International Order and the Emergence of the Tianxia Concept’, Journal of Contemporary China, 20, 68, 2011, 89-102.
- Qin Yaqing, ‘Why is There No Chinese International Relations Theory?’, International Relations of the Asia-Pacific, 7, 3, 2007, 313-340.
- Zhang Qingmin and Lee Min Gyu, ‘An Analytical Study of the Ideological Sources of China’s Conduct’, in Zhao Jinjun and Chen Zhirui (eds), China and the International Society, Adaptation and Self-consciousness (World Century Publishing Corporation, 2014), pp. 55-86.
- Chen Zhou/Chinese Defence White Paper, The State Council Information Office of the People’s Republic of China, ‘China’s Military Strategy’, May 2015,
- Academy of Military Science, Military Strategy Department, ‘Strategic Guidance of Military Deterrence Activities’, IN Shou Xiaosong (ed.), The Science of Military Strategy (Beijing: Military Science Press, 2013), pp. 134-153.
- Wang Jisi, ‘Ideas of China’s Grand Strategy’, International Politics Quarterly, 4, 2007.
- ‘Initiation of Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence and Participation in Asian-African Conference’, in Han Nianlong (ed.), Diplomacy of Contemporary China (Hong Kong: New Horizon Press, 1990), pp. 101-113.
- Michael D. Swaine, ‘China’s Assertive Behaviour: Part One: On "Core Interests"’, China Leadership Monitor, Volume 34.
- Alan Dupont, ‘An Asian Security Standoff’, The National Interest 119 (May/June 2012), 55-61.
- Avery Goldstein, ‘First Things First: The Pressing Danger of Crisis Instability in US-China Relations’, International Security, 37, 4, 2013, 49-89.
- Shi Yinhong, ‘"Triumphalism" and Decision Making in China’s Asia Policy’, Economic and Political Studies, 1, 1, 2013, 107-119.
- Robert S. Ross, ‘The 1995-1996 Taiwan Strait Confrontation: Coercion, Credibility, and Use of Force’, International Security, 25, 2, 2000, 87-123.
- Thomas J. Christensen, ‘The Contemporary Security Dilemma: Deterring a Taiwan Conflict’, Washington Quarterly, 25, 4, 2002, 7-21.
- M. Taylor Fravel, ‘Regime Insecurity and International Cooperation, Explaining China’s Compromises in Territorial Disputes’, International Security, 30, 2, 2005, 46-83.
- Anne Hsiu-an Hsiao, ‘China and the South China Sea Lawfare’, Issues and Studies, 52, 2, 2016, 1-42.
- Steven Wei Su, ‘The Territorial Dispute over the Tiaoyu/Senkaku Islands: An Update’, Ocean Development & International Law, 36, 2005, 45–61.
- Michael Yahuda, ‘Strategic Rivalry’, in Sino-Japanese Relations After the Cold War: Two Tigers Sharing a Mountain (Abingdon: Routledge, 2014), pp. 99-127.
- Zhu Feng and Nathan Beauchamp-Mustafaga, ‘North Korea's Security Implications for China’, in Carla P. Freeman (ed.), China and North Korea: Strategic and Policy Perspectives from a Changing China (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2015), pp. 37-64.
- Amitav Acharya, ‘Will Asia's Past Be Its Future?’, International Security, 28, 3, 2003/2004, 149-164.
- Rory Medcalf, ‘In Defence of the Asia-Pacific: Australia’s New Strategic Map’, Australian Journal of International Affairs, 68, 4, 2014, 470-483.
- Wang Jisi, ‘Marching Westwards’, in Shao Binhong (ed.), The World in 2020 According to China: Chinese Foreign Policy Elites Discuss Emerging Trends in International Politics (Leiden: Brill, 2014), pp. 129-136.
- Dmitri Trenin, "From Greater Europe to Greater Asia: The Sino-Russian Entente", Moscow: Carnegie Moscow, April 2015.
- Song Weiqing, ‘Interests, Power and China’s Difficult Game in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO)’, Journal of Contemporary China, 23, 85, 2014, 85-101.
- Andrew Small, ‘Rehyphenating India’, in The China-Pakistan Axis, Asia’s New Geopolitics, (London, Hurst & Co., 2015), pp. 47-66.
- Erica Downs, ‘China Buys Into Afghanistan’, SAIS Review, 33, 2, 2012, 65-84.
- Rosemary Foot, ‘"Doing Some Things" in the Xi Jinping Era: The United Nations as Chinas Venue of Choice’, International Affairs, 90, 5, 2014, 1085-1100.
- Chien-pin Li, ‘Norm Entrepreneur or Interest Maximiser? China’s Participation in UN Peacekeeping Operations, 2001-2010’, China: An International Journal, 9, 2, 2011, 313-327.
- Arthur Kroeber, ‘Financing China’s Global Dreams’, China Economic Quarterly, November 2015, 27-35.
- Lowell Dittmer, ‘China and the Developing World’, in Lowell Dittmer and George T. Yu, China: The Developing World and the New Global Dynamic (Boulder: Lynne Rienner, 2010), pp. 1-12.
- Lucy Corkin, Lucy, ‘Redefining Foreign Policy Impulses toward Africa: The Roles of the MFA, the MOFCOM and China Exim Bank’, Journal of Current Chinese Affairs, 40, 4, 2011, 61-90.
- Gudrun Wacker, ‘China’s Role in G20/BRICS and Implications’, Heinrich Böll Stiftung, China, 2014, 1-7.
- Gloria Jean Gong, ’What China Wants: China’s Climate Change Priorities in a Post-Copenhagen World’, Global Change, Peace & Security, 23, 2, 2011, 170-174.
- Andrew Nathan and Robert S. Ross, ‘Human Rights in Chinese Foreign Policy’, in The Great Wall and the Empty Fortress: China’s Search for Security (London: W.W. Norton and Co, 1998), pp. 178-192.
- Juha A. Vuori, ‘Take One: The Construction of the Falungong as a Threat to National Security’, in Critical Security and Chinese Foreign Policy: The Anti-Falungong Campaign (Abingdon: Routledge, 2014), pp. 84-106.
- Wang Yizhou, ‘"Creative Involvement:" A New Direction in Chinese Foreign Policy’, in Creative Involvement: Evolution of China’s Global Role, European Council on Foreign Relations, 2013.
- Murray Scot Tanner and James Bellacqua, ‘Beijing’s Perceptions of an Evolving Terrorist Threat’, in China’s Response to Terrorism, CNA, June 2016, 11-36.
- Brian Fishman, ‘Al-Qaeda and the Rise of China: Jihadi Geopolitics’, Washington Quarterly, 34, 3, 2011, 47-62.
- Liu Tiewa and Haibin Zhang, ‘Debates in China about the Responsibility of Protect as a Developing International Norm: A General Assessment’, Conflict, Security and Development, 14, 4, 2014, 403-427
- Stephanie Lieggi, ‘From Proliferator to Model Citizen? China’s Recent Enforcement of Nonproliferation-Related Trade Controls and its Potential Positive Impact in the Region’, Strategic Studies Quarterly, Summer 2010.
- Bates Gill, ‘Non-proliferation and Arms Control’, in Rising Star, China’s New Security Diplomacy, Brookings Institution Press, 2010, 74-103.
- Oliver Bräuner, ‘Beyond the Arms Embargo: EU Transfers of Defense and Dual-Use Technologies to China’, Journal of East Asian Studies, 13, 2013, 457–482.
- Konstantin Makienko, Mikhail Barabanov, and Vasiliy Kashin, ‘China on the Arms Market’, in Shooting Star: China’s Military Machine in the 21st Century (Minneapolis: East View Press, 2012.
- Linda Jacobson and Dean Knox, ‘New Foreign Policy Actors in China’, SIPRI policy paper 26, September 2010.
- David M. Lampton, Xi Jinping and the National Security Commission: Policy Coordination and Political Power’, Journal of Contemporary China, 24, 95, 2015, 759-777.
- You Ji, ‘The PLA and Diplomacy: Unrevealing Myths about the Military Role in Foreign Policy-Making’, The Journal of Contemporary China, 23, 86, 2014, 252-264
- Alice Miller, ‘The CCP Central Committee’s Leading Small Groups’, China Leadership Monitor, No. 26, 2008.
- Zhang Qingmin, ‘Bureaucratic Politics and Chinese Foreign Policy-Making’, The Chinese Journal of International Politics, 2016, 1-24.
- Christopher Hughes, ‘Reclassifying Chinese Nationalism: The Geopolitik Turn’, Journal of Contemporary China, 20, 71, 2011, 601-620.
- James Reilly, ‘A Wave to Worry About? Public Opinion, Foreign Policy and China's Anti-Japan Protests’, Journal of Contemporary China, 23, 86, 2014, 197-215.
- Martin Andrew, ‘Transparency and the PLA – Some Observations’, China Policy Institute Policy Paper, no. 3, 2015.
- Adam P. Liff and Andrew S. Erickson, ‘Demystifying China’s Defence Spending: Less Mysterious in the Aggregate’, The China Quarterly, 2016, 2013, 1-26.
- Jian Zhang, ‘China’s Defense White Papers: A Critical Appraisal’, Journal of Contemporary China, 21, 77, 2012, 881-898.
- Fiona S. Cunningham and M. Taylor Fravel, ‘Assuring Assured Retaliation’, International Security, 40, 2, 2015, 7-50.
- Oriana Skylar Mastro, ‘A Global Expeditionary People’s Liberation Army: 2025-2030’, in Roy Kamphausen and David Lai (eds), The Chinese People’s Liberation Army in 2025, (United States Army War College Press, 2015), pp. 207-234.
- Dennis J. Blasko, ‘Integrating the Services and Harnessing the Military Area Commands’, Journal of Strategic Studies, 39, 5-6, 2016, 685-708.
- Alexandre Sheldon-Duplaix, ‘Beyond the China Seas: Will China Become a Global Sea Power?", China Perspectives, 3, 2016, 43-52.
- Kevin Pollpeter, ‘Space, the New Domain: Space Operations and Chinese Military Reforms’, Journal of Strategic Studies, 39, 5-6, 2016, 707-727.
- Nigel Inkster, ‘Chinese Intelligence in the Cyber Age’, Survival: Global Politics and Strategy, 55, 1, 2013, 45-66.
China’s rise and the global order
Regional order with Chinese characteristics
Debates on grand strategy and national security policy
Volume 2: China’s Security Priorities in Asia
US-China rivalry in Asia and Taiwan
Security hotspots in China’s East Asian periphery
China’s Eurasian and West Asian periphery
Volume 3: China and International Security Management
China in the United Nations system
Economic security and global governance
The future of non-interference
Non-proliferation and arms control
Volume 4: China’s national security policy
The making of national security policy
The People’s Liberation Army and China’s military policy
Liselotte Odgaard is an Associate Professor at the Royal Danish Defence College.
Mathieu Duchâtel is Senior Policy Fellow and Deputy Director of the Asia and China Programme at the European Council of Foreign Relations.