China and Inner Asia
Session Abstract: Although the Republic of China (Taiwan) once held a seat in the United Nations and was a diplomatic ally of the United States, its international position has changed dramatically in recent decades. The People’s Republic of China (PRC) has demanded that other countries abide by the “one China principle”—the notion that there is only one China, requiring countries to choose between diplomatic ties with the PRC and the Republic of China (Taiwan). As the PRC’s geopolitical and economic power has grown, this position has led to a gradual erosion of Taiwan’s international space; its list of formal diplomatic allies now numbers only 15, and it is largely excluded from the world’s most influential intergovernmental organizations. Nonetheless, as the papers on this panel explore, Taiwan maintains a diverse set of connections to the international community; these connections have altered the history and politics of Taiwan itself, but also have important implications for US-Taiwan relations and the politics of international cooperation. This panel thus seeks to enrich the conversation on Taiwan’s international position by moving away from a focus on state-to-state ties, instead emphasizing the ways in which groups of citizens (Wu), diaspora organizations (Peng), and subnational governments (Newland) link Taiwan to the United States and other global stakeholders. As Wei-chin Lee’s paper suggests, however, China’s efforts to exclude Taiwan within formal intergovernmental organizations continue to create substantial obstacles to Taiwan’s integration into the global community.
Paper Presenter: Wei-chin Lee – Wake Forest University
Paper Presenter: Sara A. Newland – Smith College
Paper Presenter: Chichi Peng – University of California, Santa Barbara
Paper Presenter: Justin Wu – University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill