Recent research on Chinese citizens’ foreign policy attitudes suggests that the global pandemic has increased optimism about China’s future trajectory, with more than half of respondents to Chinese public opinion polls saying they expect China to catch up to or surpass the United States in terms of relative power over the next decade. Those same polls also reveal a popular perception in China that COVID-19 is accelerating China’s rise relative to the United States — a finding that indicates the pandemic has played a major role in shaping public attitudes regarding great power competition.

Health workers during a COVID alert in Wuhan, China on Jan. 11, 2021. (Gilles Sabrie/The NewYork Times)
Health workers during a COVID alert in Wuhan, China on Jan. 11, 2021. (Gilles Sabrie/The NewYork Times)

On February 16, USIP and the Academy of Political Science held a discussion with the researchers. The conversation looked at the current state of U.S.-China relations, examined how emerging trends and COVID-19 have impacted policy considerations, and pinpointed where mass opinion fits into the bilateral equation. 

Take part in the conversation on Twitter with #USChinaCovid.

The webcast and podcast for this event are no longer available.

Speakers

Robert Shapiro, opening remarks
President, Academy of Political Science and Editor of Political Science Quarterly

Joshua Byun
PhD candidate, Department of Political Science, University of Chicago

D.G. Kim
PhD candidate, Department of Political Science, University of California, San Diego

Sichen Li
PhD candidate, Department of Political Science, University of California, San Diego

Evan Medeiros
Senior Advisor, China, U.S. Institute of Peace

Andrew Scobell, moderator
Distinguished Fellow, China, U.S. Institute of Peace

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