Daniel Christopher LYNCH

Daniel Christopher LYNCH, associate professor of international relations at USC Dornsife, is currently researching how Chinese political and intellectual elites expect China will, or should, change in the years leading up to about 2030. He is focusing on five interrelated issue-areas: domestic political processes and institutions; comprehensive national power and its implications for the country’s role(s) in world politics; Party-state defense of cultural integrity and national identity under conditions of deepening globalization; development and diffusion of potentially transformative new technologies; and prospects for achieving sustainable development. LYNCH’s goal is to understand how Chinese people patched into policymaking networks are conceiving their own society’s future; he is not trying to develop “objective” predictions or forecasts of his own. But he is interested in assessing how the Chinese expectations differ from dominant expectations implicit in Western social science models, and what these differences may mean for China’s actual course of development. In addition to this large-scale project, LYNCH–in his spare time (!)–continues to monitor the domestic politics of Taiwan and Thailand, and in particular the problems these societies face in deepening democracy, consolidating autonomy, and achieving social justice. Unavoidably and increasingly, Taiwanese and Thai people must face their domestic challenges within the context of China’s rise. How these outside “others” experience Chinese change can be just as illuminating as how Chinese people themselves interpret their country’s developmental trajectory.

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