China Aerospace Studies Institute

A Chinese Su-27 Flanker fighter flies over Anshan Airfield, China

A Chinese Su-27 Flanker fighter flies over Anshan Airfield, China, during a visit by the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Marine Gen. Peter Pace, Mar. 24, 2007, photo by Staff Sgt. D. Myles Cullen, USAF

The purpose of the China Aerospace Studies Institute (CASI) is to advance understanding of the capabilities, operating concepts, and limitations of China's aerospace forces, which encompass the PLA Air Force (PLAAF), Naval Aviation, Rocket Force and space assets. Created at the initiative of the Director, Strategy, Concepts, and Assessments, Headquarters of the United States Air Force (USAF), CASI aims to fill a niche in the China research community by providing high quality, unclassified research on Chinese aerospace developments in the context of U.S. strategic imperatives in the Asia-Pacific region.

CASI adopts a hybrid approach to conducting its research by employing RAND subject matter experts as well as experts from think tanks, academia and the USAF. CASI develops annual research agendas and products in a collaborative effort with stakeholder USAF organizations. Research will focus on issues and themes that relate directly to the primary missions of the USAF. The theme for FY16 is Chinese Aerospace Power Projection Development and Execution. Currently, CASI is housed at RAND Corporation's Arlington, VA office, and will transition to an independent, USAF-sponsored entity in FY17.