The speed and scale of China’s rise have produced a mixture of wonder and consternation in the international community. Many experts argue that China is well on its way to becoming the world’s next superpower, but question what that would mean for China and for the rest of the world. Hu Angang, one of China’s most influential public intellectuals and director of the Center for China Studies at Tsinghua University in Beijing, addresses these questions in his new book, China in 2020: A New Type of Superpower (Brookings Press, 2011), the latest volume of the Thornton Center Chinese Thinkers Series published by the Brookings Institution Press. Dr. Hu analyzes three major dimensions of China’s rise: its overall economic and social development; advances in education, science, and technology (including alternative energy); and the likely complications posed by resource scarcity, environmental degradation and climate change.
On June 15, the John L. Thornton China Center at Brookings hosted the launch of China in 2020: A New Type of Superpower. Hu was joined by Nicholas Lardy, the Anthony M. Solomon senior fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics, and Senior Fellow Cheng Li, director of research at the John L. Thornton China Center. Senior Fellow Kenneth Lieberthal, director of the John L. Thornton China Center, provided introductory remarks and moderated the discussion.
After the program, panelists took audience questions.