China Rising is a blog dedicated to delivering insights and analysis on the geopolitical, economic, social, and cultural implications of China’s unprecedented rise to global superpower status.
Since the Opening and Reform movement of 1978, during which time China opened its markets to the international economy, Chinese citizens have enjoyed the benefits of rapid economic development. In less than 40 years, China’s middle class has grown from practically non-existent to nearly the size of the entire U.S. population—an economic advancement once considered unfathomable. This unprecedented economic evolution is occurring in a country with over 5,000 years of cultural history and heritage, forcing Chinese people to adapt to swift social transformations while celebrating a legacy of national pride and perseverance.
However, the tremendous economic progress of modern China has also ushered in the rise of complex challenges throughout the country. They include: vast income inequality; gender imbalance; ethnic tensions; environmental degradation; over-dependence on fossil fuels; corruption; an overpopulated and aging nation; an economic transition from exports to internal consumption and services; underdeveloped modern social values; the absence of channels for social and political participation; and a poor human rights record, among others. The intricate and ever-evolving consequences of China’s rapid ascendance into a global superpower make for an uncertain future, as the country seeks to establish its future political, military, social, and cultural identity.
China Rising explores these issues and more.