Course Code


Course Name

Selected Themes on Chinese International Relations


Thursday 10:30am-1:15pm


WMY 301


Séverine ARSÈNE

Teaching Assistant


Course Description

This is an introduction to some of the major contemporary issues in Chinese international relations. We will study this through concrete case studies such as China’s engagement with the United Nations, its role in global security issues, and aid and development. We will also discuss how emerging issues are shifting the stakes in international relations, like climate change, technology, and soft power. By looking closer at the actors and their interactions, the course aims at complicating classic debates about China’s emergence on the global stage, as a new “responsible” participant or a “revisionist” challenger of the international order. Along the way we will touch upon China’s relations with different regions of the world: the US, Asia, Africa, Europe and more. 

Course Outline

Detailed Course Outline is available on Blackboard.

Week 1 : Introduction

Week 2: Theories and debates on Chinese IR

Week 3: Actors and institutions of IR in China

Week 4: China’s rise in a new world order

Week 5: Global Security

Week 6: Finance

Week 7: Aid and development

Week 8: Media: From Soft Power to Sharp Power

Week 9: Technology

Week 10: Climate change and environmental issues

Week 11: Europe-China relations

Assessment & Assignments

Policy brief (30%)

Oral presentation (20%)

Pop-up questions (30%)

Mind-mapping and participation (20%)

Honesty in Academic Work

Attention is drawn to University policy and regulations on honesty in academic work, and to the disciplinary guidelines and procedures applicable to breaches of such policy and regulations. Details may be found at

With each assignment, students will be required to submit a signed declaration that they are aware of these policies, regulations, guidelines and procedures.

  • In the case of group projects, all members of the group should be asked to sign the declaration, each of whom is responsible and liable to disciplinary actions, irrespective of whether he/she has signed the declaration and whether he/she has contributed, directly or indirectly, to the problematic contents.
  • For assignments in the form of a computer-generated document that is principally text-based and submitted via VeriGuide, the statement, in the form of a receipt, will be issued by the system upon students’ uploading of the soft copy of the assignment.

Assignments without the properly signed declaration will not be graded by teachers.

Only the final version of the assignment should be submitted via VeriGuide.

The submission of a piece of work, or a part of a piece of work, for more than one purpose (e.g. to satisfy the requirements in two different courses) without declaration to this effect shall be regarded as having committed undeclared multiple submissions. It is common and acceptable to reuse a turn of phrase or a sentence or two from one’s own work; but wholesale reuse is problematic. In any case, agreement from the course teacher(s) concerned should be obtained prior to the submission of the piece of work.