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China and the Post-COVID Global Order: a world according to China?

Hosted by the LSE IDEAS

Online public event


Elizabeth C. Economy

Elizabeth C. Economy

Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University

George Magnus

George Magnus

Research Associate at the China Centre, University of Oxford


Professor Michael Cox

Professor Michael Cox

Founding Director of LSE IDEAS

The COVID-19 pandemic has once again raised the fundamental question of how best to understand China’s foreign policy intentions and practices.

Hardening diplomatic rhetoric, heightened cross-strait tensions, and the worsening US-China relationship, reflect China’s growing confidence and assertiveness in international affairs. At the centre of these developments is General Secretary Xi Jinping. As the most powerful Chinese leader since Mao Zedong, Xi has clearly articulated the desire to transform the global order in a way that is conducive to Chinese interests.

How are we best to understand China’s global leadership ambitions and what implications will they have for international politics? What potential obstacles might Xi encounter in his quest to achieve China’s “national rejuvenation”? Following the publication of Elizabeth Economy’s book, The World According to China, LSE IDEAS China Foresight hosts a webinar to analyse China’s global leadership ambitions and their implications.

Meet the speakers

Elizabeth C. Economy is Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University. Previously she was C.V. Starr Senior Fellow and Director for Asia Studies at the Council on Foreign Relations. She is an award-winning author and internationally renowned expert on Chinese domestic and foreign policy and US–China relations. Her books The Third Revolution: Xi Jinping and the New Chinese State, By All Means Necessary: How China’s Resource Quest is Changing the World (with Michael Levi), and The River Runs Black: The Environmental Challenge to China’s Future (2nd edn) are widely acclaimed and her writings have appeared in Foreign Affairs, Foreign Policy, the New York Times, the Washington Post, and the Wall Street Journal. A frequent guest on nationally broadcast radio and television, she has testified before Congress on US–China-related matters. Politico Magazine has named her one of “The 10 Names That Matter on China Policy".

George Magnus is an independent economist and commentator, and Research Associate at the China Centre, Oxford University, and at the School of Oriental and African Studies, London. George was the Chief Economist, and then Senior Economic Adviser, at UBS Investment Bank from 1995-2016. He had a front row seat and key managerial position for multiple episodes of boom and bust in both advanced economies and emerging markets, including notably the Great Financial Crisis of 2008. George famously anticipated it in 2006-2007 with a series of research papers in which he warned of an impending Minsky Moment. He had previously worked as the Chief Economist at SG Warburg (1987-1995), and before that in a senior capacity before ‘Big Bang’ at Laurie Milbank/Chase Securities, and before that, Bank of America in London and San Francisco. George wrote The Age of Aging (Wiley) in 2008, Uprising: will emerging markets shape or shake the world economy (Wiley) in 2011. His latest book, Red Flags: why Xi’s China is in jeopardy (Yale University Press) was published in 2018 and with additional material in paperback in 2019. He is a regular contributor to the Financial Times, Times, New Statesman, BBC, Bloomberg, Project Syndicate and other media.

Meet the chair

Michael Cox is a Founding Director of LSE IDEAS and Emeritus Professor of International Relations at LSE. He is Senior Academic Adviser to the China Foresight Forum at LSE IDEAS. He directed and taught on the LSE-PKU Summer School for several years and has published widely on China’s relationship with the West. His most recent books include a new second edition of E. H. Carr’s, The Twenty Years’ Crisis (2016), a collection of his own essays The Post-Cold War World (2018), a centennial edition of J.M.Keynes’s, The Economic Consequences of the Peace (2019) and a reissue with his introduction to E. H. Carr’s 1945 classic Nationalism and After (2021).


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