Scott Warren Harold

Photo of Scott Harold
Political Scientist
Washington Office

Education

B.A. in international relations, Michigan State University; M.A., Ph.D. in political science, Columbia University

Overview

Scott Warren Harold is a political scientist at the RAND Corporation, where he specializes in Chinese foreign policy, East Asian security, and international affairs. Prior to joining RAND in August 2008, Harold worked at The Brookings Institution's John L. Thornton China Center from 2006-2008. His doctorate is in political science from Columbia University, where he wrote a thesis on China's foreign policy decisionmaking with respect to joining the World Trade Organization. In addition to his work at RAND, Harold is an adjunct professor in the Security Studies Program at Georgetown University's Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service, where he has taught since 2006. He has also taught Chinese politics at Columbia University. Harold is a term member of the Council on Foreign Relations from 2012 to 2017. He is fluent in Mandarin Chinese. His recent publications include China and Iran: Economic, Political, and Military Relations (with Alireza Nader); "Ieodo as Metaphor?: The Growing Importance of Sovereignty Disputes in South Korea-China Relations and the Role of the United States" (Asian Perspective, Vol. 36, no. 2); "Guest Editor's Introduction" (China Perspectives 2011, no. 4: Special Issue on The Modernization of the People's Liberation Army and Its Repercussions); and (with co-author Cheng Li) "China's New Military Elite," (Chinese Security, Winter 2007).

Concurrent Non-RAND Positions

Adjunct Professor of Security Studies, Security Studies Program, Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service, Georgetown University

Recent Projects

  • China and Iran: Economic, Political, and Military Relations
  • China's Expanding Role in Global Mergers and Acquisitions Markets
  • New Opportunities and Challenges for Taiwan's Security

Selected Publications

Scott W. Harold, "Ieodo as Metaphor?" Asian Perspective, 36(2), 2012

Scott W. Harold, ed., "Special Issue: The Modernization of the People's Liberation Army and Its Implications," China Perspectives, 4, 2011

Scott W. Harold, Cheng Li, "China's New Military Elite," China Security, 2007

Commentary

  • Pro-democracy lawmakers protest as Li Fei (on screen), deputy general secretary of the National People's Congress standing committee, speaks during a briefing session in Hong Kong Sept. 1, 2014

    Big Trouble in Little China

    As China's central government and Hong Kong residents consider next steps after last week's decision on the 2017 chief executive election, they will do so against a background of deteriorating trust, declining social acceptance of integration, and a worsening of relations between Hong Kong and mainland Chinese society.

    Sep 9, 2014 | Foreign Affairs

  • Chinese naval soldiers stand guard on China's first aircraft carrier Liaoning

    Thoughts on China's New Air Defense Zone Policy

    In response to an inquiry from The Nelson Report, RAND's Scott Harold offered some thoughts on China's new air defense zone policy and how Japan and South Korea could be brought closer together by their respective responses.

    Dec 4, 2013 | The RAND Blog

  • Secretary Kerry Meets With South Korean President Park Geun-hye

    Obama-Park Summit a Critical Opportunity for the US-Korea Alliance

    To preserve and protect the peace and freedom that has seen Asia develop into a third engine of the global economy, the United States and South Korea should take steps to deepen their security cooperation in three areas: bilateral alliance management, defense force modernization, and improved regional diplomatic coordination.

    Apr 18, 2013 | PacNet, CSIS and Asia Times

  • a handshake

    A Russia-China Alliance Brewing?

    Three major areas appear to have been the focus of Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin's recent summit: managing expectations about the relationship; expanding bilateral trade in energy and arms; and cooperation on international security affairs.

    Apr 12, 2013 | The Diplomat

  • Senior members of the People's Liberation Army met the U.S. Pacific Command aircrews when they delivered relief supplies to the earthquake-stricken Sichuan province in May 2008.

    China's Defense Spending Mystery

    China's decision to expand defense spending also carries clues about the Party's need to keep the military happy, the new leadership's confidence and new President Xi Jinping's ability to put his own stamp on policy from the start, writes Scott Harold.

    Mar 13, 2013 | CNN

  • Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe

    What to Expect from Obama and Abe's U.S.-Japan Summit

    To make the meeting between President Barack Obama and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe successful, Washington and Tokyo will need to gain greater clarity on three broad areas: security, trade, and common values, writes Scott Harold.

    Feb 22, 2013 | U.S. News & World Report

  • President Barack Obama greets Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra of Thailand during the ASEAN Summit in Nusa Dua, Bali, Indonesia, Nov. 18, 2011.

    Obama Trip Could Be Bellwether for U.S.-Asia Relations

    Specific areas of focus for President Obama's visit are likely to include expanding trade and investment opportunities for U.S. businesses in Southeast Asia, increasing defense cooperation with Thailand, and offers of disaster recovery assistance to Burma in the wake of its recent earthquake, writes Scott Harold.

    Nov 15, 2012 | RAND.org and GlobalSecurity.org

  • Secretary of Defense Leon E. Panetta shakes hands with Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping prior to a meeting in Beijing China, Sept. 19, 2012

    Panetta Walks Fine Line During China Visit

    Panetta's visit should make clear that China's lawless domestic behavior will not be allowed to be repeated abroad, because if it is, it could lead to armed conflict between China and the U.S.-Japan alliance, writes Scott Harold.

    Sep 19, 2012 | RAND.org

  • world map with China colored red like its flag

    Will China's Nationalism Come Back to Bite Leaders?

    It is possible that at some point, anti-Japan protests could slip beyond the regime's control, and Party leaders worry that mishandling such tensions could affect the regime's legitimacy—and ultimately erode its grip on power, writes Scott Harold.

    Sep 5, 2012 | CNN

  • aircraft carrier USS George Washington

    Beijing Unflustered by Cool Ties With Seoul

    In light of deeply-rooted policy differences, so clearly on display in China’s treatment of South Korea over the past two years, no amount of tweaking around the margins of policy, inspired by internet polling, is likely to lead to dramatic improvements in the bilateral relationship.

    Aug 20, 2012 | YaleGlobal

  • Questions After the First U.S. Bank Takeover by a Chinese State-Controlled Company

    In considering foreign application to acquire U.S. companies, the United States needs to consider both risks as well as benefits in both defense and economic dimensions, write Charles Wolf, Jr., Brian Chow, Gregory Jones, and Scott Harold.

    May 15, 2012 | RAND.org and GlobalSecurity.org

Publications