Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs
China Initiative

Elizabeth Wishnick ─ Is Russia an Asset for China? The Russian War on Ukraine and the Sino-Russian Partnership

Tuesday, November 15, 2022

10:00am – 11:00am

Register here to attend the webinar.

This talk examines the benefits Chinese officials believe their country derives from the partnership as well as its limitations in the broader context of a globalized world from which China greatly benefits economically. This is not the Cold War alliance of the 1950s—today China seeks partnership with Russia to change the rules of global governance from within as well as to buttress its own global economic and security positions. Although censorship in China has prohibited criticism of Sino-Russian relations, since the Russian invasion of Ukraine some prominent retired PRC officials have stated publicly that Russia is a liability and a few leading Chinese scholars have criticized Russian policies. However, despite evidence of misgivings in some advisory circles, Xi is unlikely to change course as he sees the partnership with Russia as integral to his own concerns over regime security.

This talk is part of a series moderated by Visiting Professor of International and Public Affairs Lyle Goldstein, “China-Russia Relations and the Future of World Order.”

Elizabeth Wishnick is a Senior Research Scientist in the China and Indo-Pacific Security Affairs Division at the Center for Naval Analyses, on leave from her position as Professor of Political Science at Montclair State University. Dr. Wishnick also is a Senior Research Scholar at the Weatherhead East Asian Institute, Columbia University, and an Affiliate Researcher at the Center for Arctic Resilience in the Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, at the University of Alaska, Fairbanks. Dr. Wishnick has dual regional expertise on China and Russia and is an expert on Chinese foreign policy, Sino-Russian relations, Asian security (including Taiwan and Russia), and Arctic geopolitics. Her book project, China’s Risk China’s Risk: Oil, Water, Food and Regional Security (forthcoming Columbia University Press) addresses the security consequences of energy, water and food risks in China for its Eurasian neighbors, a topic she explores in a related policy blog, www.chinasresourcerisks.com. She received a Ph.D. in Political Science from Columbia University, an M.A. in Russian and East European Studies from Yale University, and a B.A. from Barnard College. She speaks Mandarin, Russian, and French and recently spent six months in Vladivostok, Russia, Shanghai, China, and Almaty, Kazakhstan as a part of a Fulbright Global Scholar award.