Skip to main content

Balancing Cooperation and Competition

A New Era In U.S.-China Relations

Task Force 2016

Balancing Cooperation and Competition


Thomas J. Christensen

William P. Boswell Professor of World Politics of Peace and War, Princeton University; Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs (2006-2008)

Faculty Adviser

David Bachman headshot

David Bachman


Task Force

  • Ian Bellows
  • Caleb Bronstein
  • Vivian Chang
  • Yueh Chang
  • Rebekah Cheng
  • Matt Goeppele-Parrish
  • Geun Woo Jeong
  • Prabhjot Kaler
  • Zelalem Kassa
  • Luis Mendoza
  • Zengyang Mi
  • Alexander Neeley
  • Yen Nguyen
  • Lei Qi
  • Christian Robledo
  • Yuxi Wei

The emergence of China as a global power in multi-dimensional areas presents a variety of challenges to U.S. interests and foreign policy. Balancing cooperation and competition will be a pivotal task for U.S. foreign policy makers in the coming decades. To better serve U.S. interests, this task force seeks to understand and analyze the multiple facets and layers of U.S.-China relations in order to formulate effective U.S. foreign policies.


The  U.S.  must  Address Bilateral, Regional, and Global issues in order to formulate effective foreign policies:

  • China is currently aiming to expand its strategic power and influence in such a way that it threatens stability in a region with many U.S. allies and interests
  • Economic growth begets greater interdependence between the U.S. and China, but several impediments to this connectedness are creating a mutual distrust between the two countries and affecting state diplomacy
  • Issues such as environmental policy, energy security, and human rights cause greater contention in U.S.-China Relations


  • Promote strategic relationships with regional powers in Asia
  • Ratify a U.S.-China bilateral investment treaty
  • Maintain current security and diplomatic arrangements with Taiwan
  • Work to promote international norms of intellectual property, cybersecurity and human rights
  • Build on the success of ongoing bilateral environmental policy


Click here for more Task Force Reports