How to Meet the China Challenge: Aspen Strategy Group Explores the Future of U.S.-China Relations

January 24, 2020

National security and foreign policy leaders see opportunities for cooperation and competition between the two global superpowers in the 21st century   

Contact: Jon Purves
Senior Media Relations Manager
The Aspen Institute
202-736-2111 |

Washington, D.C., January 24, 2020 The Aspen Strategy Group (ASG), a program of the Aspen Institute, today published a report titled “The Struggle for Power: U.S.-China Relations in the 21st Century.” This volume offers a broad range of proposals for the U.S. to adapt and respond to China’s rapid ascent to global power.

“As one of the nation’s preeminent nonpartisan forums focused on U.S. foreign policy and national security, the Aspen Strategy Group dedicated our last meeting to examining one of the most important challenges of our time—the increasingly troubled relationship between the U.S. and China,” said Nicholas Burns, Executive Director of the Aspen Strategy Group. “Our latest book investigates the major fault lines between the two countries including: trade disputes, the military rivalry in the Indo-Pacific, the race for technological supremacy in the digital age, and our battle of ideas between a democratic America and authoritarian China. Our impressive list of authors offers concrete policy recommendations to address the China challenge head-on.”

This ASG report is comprised of papers commissioned for the 2019 Aspen Strategy Group Summer meeting, a nonpartisan meeting of senior national security professionals, China experts, journalists, academics, and private sector leaders representing the top experts in their fields. The foreword is by Joseph S. Nye, Jr. and Condoleezza Rice, and the preface is written by Nicholas Burns.

The report will be launched at an event at the headquarters of the Aspen Institute in Washington, D.C., with panelists including Condoleezza Rice, Nicholas Burns, Kathleen Hicks, Anja Manuel, Kurt Campbell, and Mike Pillsbury. Watch the livestream here on Friday, January 24 from 12:00pm-2:00pm ET.

In addition to the preface and foreword, the ASG report contains the following commissioned papers and contributors:

  • Ernest May Lecture  U.S.-China Relations at a Crossroad: Can History Guide the Path Forward?
    James B. Steinberg
  • The Trump Administration’s Indo-Pacific Strategy
    Michael Pillsbury
  • Reimagining Engagement
    Elizabeth Economy
  • Toward a New China Debate: The Strategic Logic of Blunting China’s Illiberal Order
    Ely Ratner
  • The Case for Allies: Coordinating a Response to China
    Shivshankar Menon
  • How Asia Navigates the U.S.-China Rivalry
    Kurt Campbell
  • The U.S.-China Strategic Competition: Clues from History
    Graham Allison
  • Campaigning through China’s Gray Zone Tactics
    Kathleen H. Hicks and Joseph P. Federici
  • From Primacy to Openness: U.S. Strategic Objectives in Asia
    Mira Rapp-Hooper
  • Managing the Fifth Generation: America, China, and the Struggle for Technological Dominance
    David E. Sanger
  • Compete, Contest, and Collaborate: How to Win the Technology Race with China
    Anja Manuel and Pavneet Singh
  • The Rise of China
    Joseph S. Nye, Jr.
  • Toward a “Smart Competition” Strategy for U.S. China Policy
    David Shambaugh
  • U.S. Grand Strategy Toward China: Seventeen Policy Prescriptions
    Robert D. Blackwill

“The Struggle for Power: U.S.-China Relations in the 21st Century” can be read online on our homepage. To request a copy of the book, members of the media should contact Jon Purves:


The Aspen Strategy Group’s mission is to provide a resolutely nonpartisan forum to address the preeminent foreign policy and national security challenges facing the United States. We bring together key decision makers – irrespective of ideology or political party – to engage in constructive public and private dialogues to address existing and evolving U.S. foreign policy priorities and global challenges.

The Aspen Institute is a global nonprofit organization committed to realizing a free, just, and equitable society. Founded in 1949, the Institute drives change through dialogue, leadership, and action to help solve the most important challenges facing the United States and the world. Headquartered in Washington, DC, the Institute has a campus in Aspen, Colorado, and an international network of partners. For more information, visit

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