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Browse resources on authoritarian sharp power and its effects on the integrity of institutions and globalized spaces.

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Source: Hudson Institute

Publication Date: June 13, 2023

The Chinese Communist Party’s Campaign on University Campuses

Authoritarian Country: China

Affected Region: North America, United States

Author: Ellen Bork

View Resource: The Chinese Communist Party’s Campaign on University Campuses

The People’s Republic of China (PRC)’s influence activities at American universities, part of an agenda to project Chinese power globally and undermine liberal democratic norms, range from seemingly benign activities like exchanges and language and culture programming to intimidation and threats.

Source: Radio Free Asia

Publication Date: July 7, 2023

‘Secret’ New York Police Station is Mere Sliver of Beijing’s U.S. Harassment Push

Authoritarian Country: China

Affected Region: North America, United States

Author: Jane Tang

View Resource: ‘Secret’ New York Police Station is Mere Sliver of Beijing’s U.S. Harassment Push

The Bejing-backed American Chang Le Association is one of many US-based organizations which have been used by the CCP to intimidate and manipulate the Chinese diaspora community. These organizations have threatened, harassed, and assaulted Chinese pro-democracy activists and protesters on US soil.

Source: The Diplomat

Publication Date: August 18, 2023

China’s Educational Soft Power Is Seeing Results in Indonesia

Authoritarian Country: China

Affected Region: Asia-Pacific, Indonesia

Author: Azis Anwar Fahcrodin

View Resource: China’s Educational Soft Power Is Seeing Results in Indonesia

China has drawn a large number of Indonesian students to its universities, even leveraging Islamic religious tenets to appeal to Muslim communities. This effort has cultivated positive opinions among the public, but also influenced religious leaders and students to dismisses China’s human rights violations, especially regarding Uyghurs.

Source: Axios

Publication Date: August 21, 2023

Beijing-run School in Tanzania Trains African Leaders in Authoritarianism

Authoritarian Country: China

Affected Region: Angola, Namibia, Mozambique, Sub-Saharan Africa, South Africa, Tanzania, Zimbabwe

Author: Bethany Allen-Ebrahimian

View Resource: Beijing-run School in Tanzania Trains African Leaders in Authoritarianism

Fighting for influence on a continent rich in raw materials and energy, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has opened a training academy in Tanzania to train African leaders in its authoritarian governance tactics. The school instructs pupils how the CCP fuses the ruling political party and the state.

Source: Sinopsis

Publication Date: August 4, 2023

Making Friends, Making Inroads: The CCP’s Influence Activities in Estonia

Authoritarian Country: China

Affected Region: Europe, Estonia

Author: Frank Jüris

View Resource: Making Friends, Making Inroads: The CCP’s Influence Activities in Estonia

The Chinese Communist Party has overseen a comprehensive foreign influence campaign in Estonia, targeting government, business, and civil society. Estonia’s financial and political ties to China have placed Chinese policy priorities over Estonia’s own national interests and threaten national security.

Source: Eurasianet

Publication Date: August 4, 2023

Central Asia: China Strives to Shape Belt and Road-Related Media Coverage

Authoritarian Country: China

Affected Region: Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, Eurasia, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan

View Resource: Central Asia: China Strives to Shape Belt and Road-Related Media Coverage

China has invested heavily in Central Asia, including in hydroelectricity, healthcare, and agriculture. China has also opened opportunities for scholarships and military cooperation. To promote China’s perspective on the Belt and Road Initiative, authorities held a conference in Xinjiang in July 2023.

Source: New York Times

Publication Date: April 23, 2023

Chinese Censorship is Quietly Rewriting the Covid-19 Story

Authoritarian Country: China

Affected Region: Global

Author: Mara Kvistendahl, Benjamin Mueller

View Resource: Chinese Censorship is Quietly Rewriting the Covid-19 Story

Beijing has attempted to shape global discourse around the origins of the Covid-19 pandemic by exploiting the editorial process in scientific journals. Chinese researchers retracted significant and important data from international journals that indicates a pattern of censorship from the government.

Source: Deutsche Welle

Publication Date: March 7, 2023

How China Controls its Top Students in Germany

Authoritarian Country: China

Affected Region: Europe, Germany

Author: Esther Felden

View Resource: How China Controls its Top Students in Germany

Chinese students in Germany were required to sign contracts that mandated strict control by the local embassy, required reporting third-party information, and limited academic freedom and freedom of expression. The government threatened to harm students’ families if they violated the terms.

Source: The Diplomat

Publication Date: February 23, 2023

China is Banking on Argentina’s Future Glory

Authoritarian Country: China

Affected Region: Latin America and the Caribbean, Argentina

Author: Leland Lazarus

View Resource: China is Banking on Argentina’s Future Glory

An op-ed published by a Shanghai professor revealed how Chinese scholars see Argentina as critical to Chinese engagement in Latin America, including through resource extraction, beef exports, and research partnerships.

Source: Foreign Affairs

Publication Date: February 7, 2023

China Hasn’t Given Up on the Belt and Road

Authoritarian Country: China

Affected Region: Global

Author: Matt Schrader, J. Michael Cole

View Resource: China Hasn’t Given Up on the Belt and Road

China’s Belt and Road Initiative has shifted away from large infrastructure projects to more subtle methods of authoritarian influence, including 5G technology, media buyouts, and “Sinology” programs in academia. Chinese support continues to be used by authoritarian allies to finance control globally.

Source: Wall Street Journal

Publication Date: January 28, 2023

China’s Displeasure With a Bookseller Follows Him to Florida

Authoritarian Country: China

Affected Region: North America, United States

Author: James Areddy

View Resource: China’s Displeasure With a Bookseller Follows Him to Florida

China forced a Shanghai bookseller into exile in the United States due to his promotion on topics ranging from Taiwan to feminism. Chinese authorities detained his wife upon her return for a routine visit, and pressured him to return so he can be imprisoned.

Source: Sinopsis

Publication Date: January 18, 2023

Scientific Exchanges with Chinese Characteristics

Authoritarian Country: China

Affected Region: Europe, Czechia

Author: Tobiáš Lipold

View Resource: Scientific Exchanges with Chinese Characteristics

Partnerships with Chinese universities have put Czech academic technology and research at risk of being stolen and used by China for military purposes. Chinese universities with military connections exploited the open nature of academic discourse and exchange programs to advance national interests.

Source: Journal of Democracy

Publication Date: December 19, 2022

China’s Global Threat to Democracy

Authoritarian Country: China

Affected Region: Global

Author: Michael Beckley, Hal Brands

View Resource: China’s Global Threat to Democracy

Seeing any expansion of global freedom as a threat to its own power, China has expanded its repressive reach and fight against democracy through a variety of coercive means: economic, diplomatic, and technological.

Source: Henry Jackson Society

Publication Date: December 12, 2022

An Investigation of China’s Confucius Institutes in the UK

Authoritarian Country: China

Affected Region: Europe, United Kingdom

Author: Sam Dunning, Anson Kwong

View Resource: An Investigation of China’s Confucius Institutes in the UK

The United Kingdom is home to 30 Confucius Institutes that operate under the umbrella of prestigious universities – more than any other country. These academic organizations are part of the CCP’s propaganda system, integrated into universities, to shape perceptions of China.

Source: Radio Free Asia

Publication Date: October 28, 2022

Pro-Democracy Publishing House in Thailand Targeted for Shutdown by Chinese Buyer

Authoritarian Country: China

Affected Region: Asia-Pacific, Thailand

Author: Qiao Xinxin

View Resource: Pro-Democracy Publishing House in Thailand Targeted for Shutdown by Chinese Buyer

The founder of a pro-democracy Thai publishing house faced repeated threats and pay-off offers by CCP agents seeking to shut down his business. This followed a publication of works on the repression of Uyghurs and political dissidents in China.