The Power Shift Discourse and China’s Rise
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The Power Shift Discourse and China’s Rise

The Swedish Institute of International Affairs (UI) and the Swedish Defence University held a research seminar regarding power shift discourse and China's rise.

The idea of power transition, or power shift, has recently been much in vogue in scholarly, policy and even popular discourse. It has led to a resurgent interest in the power-transition theory and the danger of the so-called Thucydides trap. China’s recent rise has especially motivated an interest in these topics, engendering concerns about whether this development means that China is on a collision course with the U.S.

These concerns stem from the proposition that the danger of a system-destabilizing war increases when a rising power catches up to a declining hegemon and challenges the latter’s preeminent position in the international system. But how sound are the historical understanding and empirical analysis behind this narrative, and how politically problematic is the manner in which this narrative frames the pertinent policy issues and steers popular debate about these issues?

Steve Chan, Professor of Distinction at the University of Colorado, Boulder.  

Johan Eriksson, Professor of Political Science, Södertörn University and Senior Research Associate at UI.

The seminar will be moderated by Linus Hagström, Professor of Political Science at the Swedish Defence University and Senior Research Fellow at UI.



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