China in the Era of Xi Jinping

Domestic and Foreign Policy Challenges

Robert S. Ross and Jo Inge Bekkevold, Editors

"Its excellent chapters are written by a range of superb, balanced analysts from Asia, Europe, and the United States."
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Since becoming president of China and general secretary of the Chinese Communist Party, Xi Jinping has emerged as China's most powerful and popular leader since Deng Xiaoping. The breathtaking economic expansion and military modernization that Xi inherited has convinced him that China can transform into a twenty-first-century superpower.

In this collection, leading scholars from the United States, Asia, and Europe examine both the prospects for China's continuing rise and the emergent and unintended consequences posed by China's internal instability and international assertiveness. Contributors examine domestic challenges surrounding slowed economic growth, Xi's anti-corruption campaign, and government efforts to maintain social stability. Essays on foreign policy range from the impact of nationalist pressures on international relations to China’s heavy-handed actions in the South China Sea that challenge regional stability and US-China cooperation. The result is a comprehensive analysis of current policy trends in Xi's China and the implications of these developments for his nation, the United States, and Asia-Pacific.

Table of Contents

Time Line of the People’s Republic of China
Introduction: China’s New Leadership in Domestic and International Politics
Jo Inge Bekkevold and Robert S. Ross

Part 1. Domestic Challenges for the Chinese Leadership
1. China’s Fifth-Generation Leaders: Characteristics of the New Elite and Pathways to Leadership
Bo Zhiyue
2. The Development of China’s Formal Political Structures
Zheng Yongnian and Weng Cuifen
3. The Challenges of Economic Growth and Reform
Barry Naughton
4. The Challenges of Stability and Legitimacy
Joseph Fewsmith

Part II: International Challenges to Rising China
5. Xi Jinping’s Grand Strategy: From Vision to Implementation
Stig Stenslie and Chen Gang
6. Domestic Actors and the Fragmentation of China’s Foreign Policy
Linda Jakobson
7. China’s Rise and International Regimes: Does China Seek to Overthrow Global Norms?
Andrew J. Nathan
8. China’s Rise and Economic Interdependence
Helge Hveem and T. J. Pempel
9. Xi Jinping and the Challenges to Chinese Security
Robert S. Ross and Mingjiang Li

Conclusion: New Leaders, Stronger China, Harder Choices
Jo Inge Bekkevold and Robert S. Ross




"When Xi Jiping took office in 2012–2013, he inherited many domestic and foreign policy challenges . . . . This excellent book examines these challenges, and how the Xi administration responded to these challenges."—Springer Media

"Its excellent chapters are written by a range of superb, balanced analysts from Asia, Europe, and the United States."—The China Quarterly

"Provides a diverse and comprehensive guide to the modern issues facing China."—Australian Institute of International Affairs

"Since his succession to the leadership of the Chinese Communist Party and armed forces at the 18th Congress in 2012, Xi Jinping has brought a propulsive energy and new confidence to Chinese politics. This book assembles a brilliant array of scholars for a comprehensive look at China's political economy, elite power balance, and foreign policy in this surprising new epoch."—Lowell Dittmer, University of California, Berkeley

"Superb analysis of the range of issues China and its leaders face, and their implications for the world. Incisive chapters by scholars from across the globe provide welcome context and diversity. Overall, the book is a timely guide to help understand and contextualize the rise of China, the core geopolitical event of the 21st century."—Christopher P. Twomey, Associate Professor of National Security Affairs, Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA


Jo Inge Bekkevold Weng Cuifen Joseph Fewsmith Chen Gang Helge Hveem Linda Jakobson Mingjiang Li Andrew J. Nathan Barry Naughton T. J. Pempel Robert S. Ross Stig Stenslie Zheng Yongnian Bo Zhiyue

Supplemental Materials


About the Author

Robert S. Ross is professor of political science at Boston College and an associate at the John King Fairbank Center for Chinese Studies, Harvard University. He is the author of Chinese Security Policy: Structure, Power, and Politics.

Jo Inge Bekkevold is the head of the Center for Asian Security Studies at the Norwegian Institute for Defence Studies and coeditor of Security, Strategy and Military Change in the 21st Century: Cross-Regional Perspectives.

336 pp., 6 x 9
9 figures, 9 tables
ISBN: 978-1-62616-297-6
May 2016

336 pp., 6 x 9
9 figures, 9 tables
ISBN: 978-1-62616-298-3
May 2016

336 pp.
9 figures, 9 tables
ISBN: 978-1-62616-299-0
May 2016

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