23/3/16 – VPRO
Just shown on Dutch television, this programme includes a long interview with Martin Jacques as its central thread. The following is the English language version:
Please double click for full screen.
In a recent Commonwealth Club event in Silicon Valley, two prominent China experts, Martin Jacques, author of When China Rules the World, and Susan Shirk, author of China: Fragile Superpower, had a fascinating exchange of opinions about China’s relationship with the West.
The premise of the discussion was that the United Kingdom is the U.S.’s closest ally, but it has adopted a very different policy toward China. As I wrote here, the British now call themselves “China’s best partner in the West.” Last March, the U.K. decided to join China-led Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) despite the strong opposition from the U.S. When the Chinese President Xi Jinping visited the U.K. in November, the British government showered him with an extraordinary pageantry – a startling contrast to his treatment from the U.S. where President Obama threatened to sanction China.
“This is a symptom of the rise of China,” Mr. Jacques said. “It represents a shift in [global] geopolitics.”
Susan Shirk, who is also a former Deputy Assistant Secretary of State during the Clinton administration, said the United States has a consistent policy toward China. Since Nixon’s time, the U.S. has attempted to engage with China and to build a foundation of cooperation despite the differences between the two countries. “If this engagement is not working out,” she said, “we will fall back to ‘hedge’ military alliances in Asia. But our first choice is engagement.”
24/2/16 – Asia Times
Koo: The UK and China both claim that their relationship has entered a golden era. Why do they say this? What does it mean?
Jacques: Hitherto the relationship between the UK and China has not been particularly positive. Until very recently, the UK has consistently emphasized the negative aspects of China, such as human rights and lack of democracy, as much as the positive. The new relationship between the two countries represents a big shift. The UK now views China as overwhelmingly positive. It sees China’s rise as crucial to its own future. It is seeking a comprehensive engagement with China and it perceives this as central to the UK’s economic future.
The Chinese welcome the UK shift; they are pragmatic and don’t allow the past to stand in the way. The fact that Britain has been America’s closest ally for over 60 years makes the new relationship with Britain an even bigger prize.
Koo: You have indicated that the UK approach to China was a recent decision made by the Cameron government. Can you tell us how this came about?
Jacques: In 2012, Cameron had a public meeting with the Dalai Lama. In response, Beijing put the relationship with Britain into the deep freeze. It would appear to have been a salutary experience. When normal relations were resumed, the British moved quickly and boldly to reassure China of their good intent and their desire to develop a different kind of relationship. The British had used their period in the deep freeze wisely: they no longer saw the world in such an overwhelmingly western-centric way, but came to the view that China was crucial to both the UK’s future and that of the world.
It is difficult to underestimate the significance of the recent transformation in relations between the UK and China. There are many examples in recent years of countries moving towards a closer relationship with China: the distinctiveness – and significance – of the British case lies in the fact that the UK has regarded itself – and been seen as – America’s closest ally ever since the Second World War.
The latest update of the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography has just been published. It contains biographies of 222 men and women who shaped modern British history and who died in the year 2012. Martin Jacques has written the biography for Eric Hobsbawm, one of the twentieth century’s greatest historians. By kind permission of the Oxford DNB and OUP you can read the biography here.
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To launch the new edition, the Oxford DNB produced the above video of a discussion about Eric Hobsbawm between Martin Jacques and Professor David Cannadine, Editor of the ODNB.
You can also listen to a 30 minute podcast of the discussion here:
Who would have guessed just three years ago that the David Cameron government would be the author of the boldest change in British foreign policy since the second world war? That is exactly what is now unfolding.
The process began this year when the British government announced it would join a Chinese initiative to help fund Asia’s enormous infrastructural needs. The UK became the first non-Asian country to join the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), after which more than 30 other countries joined, including Germany and France.
This hugely successful TED talk in London has now had over 2 million views. Martin Jacques asks: How do we in the West make sense of China and its phenomenal rise?
27/10/14 — Furama RiverFront Hotel, Singapore
Business China, in conjunction with Singapore Press Holdings, organised a wonderful event on 27th November in Singapore in their Eminent Speakers Series. Over a thousand people packed into the Grand Ballroom of Singapore’s Furama RiverFront Hotel to hear Martin Jacques talk on Why China Will Be a Very Different Kind of Great Power — and now for the first time, a complete video of the event is available to view.
The talk was followed by a question and answer session during which the moderator, Professor Tan Khee Giap, asked the audience whether or not they broadly agreed with Jacques’s argument. Did they vote for or against? See the short video below.
Click here for the extensive media coverage of the event (in Chinese)
On 18th September 2012, Martin Jacques gave a talk at the University of Melbourne as part of a public lecture series organised by Asialink, questioning ‘Australia’s Role in the World’. This highly popular YouTube video of his lecture has over 200,000 views.
Martin Jacques presents a highly successful series of programmes on how best to understand the unique characteristics and apparent mysteries of contemporary China, its development and its possible future. In this new series, he sets out the building blocks for making sense of China today.
The Implications of China's rise for the Global Order - 23/09/2015
Credit Suisse Global Megatrends Conference
‘In Focus Session: China and India’, discussion between Martin Jacques and Shashi Tharoor, moderated by Martin Soong (CNBC Asia)
Fairmont Singapore, 80 Bras Basah Road, Singapore
Business China and Sino-Singapore Guangzhou Knowledge City: Business Forum
Keynote speech: ‘Understanding the World Dynamics that could Impact the Rise of China Today’
The Westin Guangzhou, 6 Linhe Zhong Road, Tianhe District
Guangzhou, 510610, China
Launch of brand new expanded and updated Chinese edition of 'When China Rules the World'
Interviews with Xinhua New Agency, CCTV, Global Times, Wenhui Daily, et al.
Lecture: ‘China Model and the World Order’, 2pm – 4pm, Wednesday 27th, Peking University
Lecture: ‘China Leads the World’, 2pm – 4.30pm, Thursday 28th, Tsinghua University
Symposium: China today, from the UK's perspective
As part of the celebrations for the tenth anniversary of the founding of Xian Jiaotong Liverpool University, Suzhou
University of Liverpool, UK