Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs
China Initiative

Jessica Chen Weiss ─ A World Safe For Autocracy? The Domestic Politics of China’s Approach to World Order

Thursday, March 5, 2020

4:00pm – 5:30pm

Joukowsky Forum, 111 Thayer Street

How does China’s domestic governance shape its foreign policy ambitions and international influence? China is simultaneously a revisionist, reformer, innovator, and defender of the status quo—insisting rigidly on issues that are central to its domestic survival, while showing flexibility on issues that are more peripheral. To understand this variation, Weiss develops a framework to illuminate the domestic context of China's approach to world politics, including territorial disputes, climate change, and the promotion of a world safe for autocracy.

Jessica Chen Weiss is Associate Professor of Government at Cornell University. She is the author of Powerful Patriots: Nationalist Protest in China’s Foreign Relations (Oxford University Press, 2014). The dissertation on which it is based won the 2009 American Political Science Association Award for best dissertation in international relations, law and politics.

Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in International Organization, China Quarterly, Journal of Conflict Resolution, and Security Studies. Her research has been supported by the National Science Foundation, Cornell Einaudi Center and Institute for Social Sciences, Uppsala University, Princeton-Harvard China & The World Program, Bradley Foundation, Fulbright-Hays program, and University of California Institute on Global Conflict and Cooperation.

Born and raised in Seattle, Washington, Weiss received her Ph.D. from the University of California, San Diego. Before joining Cornell, she was an assistant professor at Yale University (2009-2015) and founded FACES, the Forum for American/Chinese Exchange at Stanford, while an undergraduate at Stanford University. Learn more about her research and writing at www.jessicachenweiss.com