President Carter's decision to normalize the relationship between the United States and the People's Republic of China in 1979 changed China, the United States, and the world. The Carter Center's China Program is dedicated to preserving this legacy and advancing U.S.-China relations by building synergy between China and the United States on issues of global importance, including fostering greater cooperation between them in other nations, providing resources and scholarship, and nurturing the next generation of young leaders who can shape the critical U.S.-China bilateral relationship to be a cornerstone of global peace and prosperity.
Promoting U.S.-China Collaboration in Other Nations
The China Program is initiating pilot programs to highlight the benefits of coordinated and collective action between the United States and China in Asia, Africa, and Latin America. This includes developing a platform to monitor and report on regional crises that could result in internal chaos and damage the crucial U.S.-China relationship. The program encourages multilateral dialogue to help resolve local conflicts, provide advice and assistance to local economic development and political reform efforts, and produce confidence-building measures for the U.S.-China relationship.
Nurturing Young Leaders
Complexities in U.S.-China relations require the next generation of leaders in both countries to be innovative problem solvers and analysts with fresh approaches to the global impact of U.S.-China bilateral relations. The China Program is developing a framework for simulated U.S.-China negotiations on regional and global issues to enhance policy education for future leaders who will either manage or influence bilateral collaboration outside the two countries. The Center also will select young scholars and professionals to be fellows working in the United States or China to monitor issues impacting U.S.-China relations and identify policy analyses to inform decision-makers and opinion makers. Fellows also will participate in the Center's worldwide election observation missions.
Conducting Research and Providing Scholarship
The China Program produces original scholarship that provides action-oriented insights for advancing U.S.-China collaboration on global issues. Central to this, the program convenes an annual Carter Center Forum on U.S.-China Relations and organizes workshops on subjects crucial to both countries in collaboration with partners in China and other countries. Conference proceedings and workshop papers are published online or in print.
Engaging China Online
In 2000, the China Program helped launch a website on villager self-government in China that quickly became one of the most comprehensive websites on grassroots democracy in China. Today, the Chinese Ministry of Civil Affairs maintains a website. Two years later, the Center launched http://www.chinaelections.org/, which became the most visited political reform portal inside and outside China.
In 2008, the China Program and the Center's Global ATI Initiative jointly launched http://www.chinatransparency.org/. In 2011, the China Program created http://www.sinoafrica.org/, which provides Chinese translations of African grassroots blogs and commentaries, giving Chinese stakeholders a resource to understand grassroots perception of their activities in Africa.
Since 2013, the China Program has followed a select community of 100 influential Weibo bloggers at www.weibochina.org, where policymakers, scholars, and ordinary people can observe a China different from official media reports. Also in 2013, the program launched the website http://www.uscnpm.org/ to provide updates on a wide range of topics related to U.S.-China relations, including foreign policy, economy and trade, and social media.
Results and Impact
- The only nongovernmental organization to be invited by the Chinese government to assist the Ministry of Civil Affairs in standardizing election practices in more than 600,000 villages
- Sponsored numerous visits by Chinese officials to observe U.S. elections since 1998
- Created websites that have become important portals for debate about political reform and open government information in China, encouraging democratic awareness and civic culture
- Due to President Carter's decision 35 years ago and the Center's name recognition in China, President Xi Jinping of China asked President Carter to allocate more resources of The Carter Center to advance U.S.-China relations in 2012