China's potential as a world power

by Jonathan D. Pollack

Purchase Print Copy

 FormatList Price Price
Add to Cart Paperback16 pages $20.00 $16.00 20% Web Discount

Addresses three principal concerns: (1) What are the available criteria for determining the appropriateness of labeling the People's Republic of China (PRC) a present or future superpower? (2) Does the PRC's past behavior or official assessments of the international situation offer guidance about China's future international role? (3) Will the PRC adopt an increasingly expansive conception of its security and foreign policy interests? The author assesses the potential effect on international politics if the PRC becomes a world power. Successors to Mao Zedong have stated that China's assumptions of an important global role in agriculture, industry, science, and the military is one of their central goals for the remainder of this century. Although it is uncertain whether these goals will be accomplished, their articulation has greatly stimulated speculation about the likelihood and implications of a world populated by more than two superpowers.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation Paper series. The paper was a product of the RAND Corporation from 1948 to 2003 that captured speeches, memorials, and derivative research, usually prepared on authors' own time and meant to be the scholarly or scientific contribution of individual authors to their professional fields. Papers were less formal than reports and did not require rigorous peer review.

Our mission to help improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis is enabled through our core values of quality and objectivity and our unwavering commitment to the highest level of integrity and ethical behavior. To help ensure our research and analysis are rigorous, objective, and nonpartisan, we subject our research publications to a robust and exacting quality-assurance process; avoid both the appearance and reality of financial and other conflicts of interest through staff training, project screening, and a policy of mandatory disclosure; and pursue transparency in our research engagements through our commitment to the open publication of our research findings and recommendations, disclosure of the source of funding of published research, and policies to ensure intellectual independence. For more information, visit www.rand.org/about/principles.

The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.