Each year, the Center organizes an academic conference focused on topics consistent with the mission to study contemporary China. These annual conferences focus on themes proposed by Penn faculty and will feature leading experts on contemporary China from institutions around the world who will present original research papers and serve as discussants. Conference papers will be revised for publication— in edited volumes, special issues of academic journals, and/or working papers issued by the Center. The CSCC’s Executive Committee will evaluate proposals for organizing each academic year’s annual conference. Penn faculty may submit proposals to Proposals are accepted on a rolling basis with a decision about the following year’s conference announced no later than April 30. If there is more than one outstanding proposal, or two complementary proposals, the Executive Committee could decide to fund two conferences for consecutive years. It is also possible that less expensive or smaller scale conferences in some years would permit funding more than one.

The conferences, the research that precedes them and the publications that follow them will contribute significantly to the quantity, quality and prominence of Penn-centered research on contemporary China, including especially the research agendas of Penn faculty in the field. Unless special circumstances make it impractical, attendance at the CSCC annual conferences is open to Penn faculty, staff, and students who are encouraged to participate in reading the papers and engaging the authors in the question and answer sessions that will follow the presentations. Penn graduate or advanced undergraduate students who are interested in playing a more active in the conference (e.g., as paper discussants, research assistants serving as rapporteurs, or helping to prepare conference proceedings for dissemination) should contact the CSCC at

Upcoming Speaker Series


(CANCELLED) Migration, Social Institutions, and Popular Resistance in Rural China

Yao Lu, Associate Professor of Sociology, Columbia University
CSCC Conference Room, Perelman 418, 133 S. 36th St.

How does migration shape collective resistance in migrant-sending communities (rural China)? This study integrates perspectives from social movements and migration to develop a framework in which migration…


Manipulating Globalization: The Influence of Bureaucrats on Business in China

Ling Chen, Assistant Professor, School of Advanced International Studies, Johns Hopkins University
Perelman Center for Political Science & Economics, Rm 100, 133 S. 36th St.

Although China is a global manufacturing titan, the "made in China" model has begun to wane. Starting in the 2000s, China shifted from attracting foreign investment to promoting domestic firms. This shift led…


The Political Beliefs of Chinese Officials

Greg Distelhorst, Mitsubishi Career Development Professor in International Management, MIT
Perelman Center for Political Science & Economics, Rm 100, 133 S. 36th St.

What are the stated beliefs of officials in China’s single-party regime? Can they express different views on policy, and if so, do their disagreements reflect deeper ideological orientations? We study these questions…


Contested Cyberspace in Contemporary China

Rongbin Han, Assistant Professor of International Affairs, University of Georgia
CSCC Conference Room, Perelman 418, 133 S. 36th St.



Ann Harrison, Professor of Business Economics and Public Policy, Wharton School of Business, University of Pennsylvania
Perelman Center for Political Science & Economics, Rm 100, 133 S. 36th St.


China’s Automobile Industry

Judith and Marshall Meyer Lectures on China’s Economy
Jie Bai, Assistant Professor of Public Policy, Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University
Perelman Center for Political Science & Economics, Rm 100, 133 S. 36th St.



Edmund Malesky, Professor of Political Science, Duke University


End of an Era: How China's Authoritarian Revival is Undermining Its Rise

Carl Minzner, Professor of Law, Fordham University

Cosponsored by the Andrea Mitchell Center for the Study of Democracy


Energy Innovation in China

Joanna Lewis, Associate Professor of Science, Technology and International Affairs, Georgetown University



Molly Roberts


Welfare and Poverty in Contemporary China

Qin Gao, Professor of Social Policy and Social Work, Columbia University
Political Science & Economics, Second Floor Forum, 133 S. 36th St.

Past Conferences


University of Pennsylvania Joins President Jimmy Carter for 70-City Live Program on China

Jimmy Carter, Former President  Ira Belkin, Executive Director of the U.S.-Asia Law Institute, NYU Law
3620 Walnut Street, Annenberg School of Communication, Room 111

Former President Jimmy Carter will join audiences in 70 locations nationwide for a live “town hall” meeting on the U.S.-China relationship.

Some of the world’s most critical issues, including…


New Media, the Internet, and a Changing China 新媒体、互联网与变动中的中国

This one-day international seminar addresses the dynamic and evolving relationships among China's new media, civil society, public opinion, commerce, international relations and legal system. Leading scholars, journalists, and bloggers will engage in an open discussion on the impact of new media on contemporary Chinese society. Co-sponsored by Beijing University School of Journalism & Communication. No registration required, open to all.
Auditorium, Peking University Law School Kaiyuan Building 1st Floor

09:00 – 9:15  Opening 开幕

Zengzhi SHI, Professor, School of Journalism and Communication, Peking University
师曾志 北京大学新闻与传播学院 教授
Avery GOLDSTEIN, Professor of Political Science,…


The State of Legal Development In China:

Issues and Evidence
Leading scholars from Renmin University will address key areas vital to China’s legal development. U.S.-based experts in these areas and U.S.-based scholars of Chinese law will offer commentary from comparative and cross-disciplinary perspectives.
Silverman 245, Penn Law School

9:00-9:15        Registration

9:15-10:00      Welcome, Opening Remarks and Introduction to


Criminal Procedure and Criminal Law Reform in China:

Legalizing the Tools of Repression or Safeguarding Human Rights?
Penn Law School, Silverman 240A

Criminal law and procedure reform is a highly sensitive issue since it implicates judicial justice and protection of human rights. China revised its Criminal Procedure Law in 2012 and it was viewed a significant step…


CSCC 2nd Annual Conference

New Media, The Internet, and a Changing China
This two-day international conference addresses the dynamic and evolving relationships among China's new media, civil society, public opinion, commerce, international relations and legal system. Twelve leading scholars present in four panels, followed by comments from expert discussants and open Q&A. No registration required, open to all.

Jan 23, 2014 - Jan 24, 2014 Gillen Amphitheater, Vance Hall, University of Pennsylvania

Vance Hall is located at 37th St & Spruce. Please see campus map for directions



Rights Litigation, Law and Political Reform in China

Top Chinese and American scholars and rights activists discuss the accomplishments, challenges and potential ways forward for the rights protection (weiquan) movement in China.
Penn Law School, Fitts Auditorium ( Golkin 100)

China’s “rights…


CSCC 1st Annual Conference

“China’s Challenges: The Road Ahead”
Four panels, papers presented by twelve leading scholars followed by comments from expert discussants and open Q&A

Apr 25, 2013 - Apr 26, 2013 Penn Law School Silverman 245, Levy Conference Room

Twelve experts on political, social, economic, and legal developments in contemporary China and its role in the world present papers examining key issues for China in…


Transnational Deal Making in an Evolving Regulatory Environment: The Function and Future of Antitrust and National Security Reviews

Silverman 240B, Reception Great Hall 5:00pm

In light of the regulatory issues raised by the ongoing Softbank/Sprint deal, and the recent Ralls dispute and CNOOC/Nexen mergers, the symposium will address antitrust and national security reviews in…


Town Hall: National Committee on United States-China Relations

Web Broadcast Available 8pm at
Gary Locke, U.S. Ambassador to China (live webcast) 8pm

On Campus Event Cancelled. Web Broadcast Still Available 8pm at

U.S. Ambassador to China Gary Locke will join audiences in 60 cities…


The Future of Chinese Administrative Law

Featuring presentations by an outstanding and diverse group of Chinese administrative law scholars, specially invited to visit the United States by the American Bar Association’s Section of Administrative Law & Regulatory Practice, and with commentary from distinguished U.S. scholars of administrative law and Chinese law, this symposium will take stock of the development of Chinese administrative law over the past thirty years, and explore possibilities for reform today. CLE Credit Available
Golkin 100, Michael A. Fitts Auditorium, Penn Law School

This is a particularly dynamic moment for Chinese administrative law.  The long-term reformist effort to secure passage of a comprehensive administrative procedure law – a law, roughly akin to the…