Quantifying the Chinese government’s reach and influence
Explore Beijing's Public Diplomacy
In June 2018, AidData, in partnership with the China Power Project at CSIS and the Asia Society Policy Institute, released Ties That Bind, the first effort to systematically quantify four key dimensions of Chinese public diplomacy (financial, cultural, elite-to-elite, and exchange activities) across 25 countries in the East Asia and Pacific (EAP) region from 2000 to 2016. The report broke new ground to quantifiably measure a much broader range of activities than had been previously attempted, while informing and inciting discussion of China’s growing public diplomacy footprint in the EAP region and its effects.
One year later, AidData in December 2019 published new data and analysis capturing the results of China’s public diplomacy push in 13 countries of another region key to its strategic interests: South and Central Asia. Silk Road Diplomacy quantifies how these efforts are received by foreign publics and leaders to determine whether it is meeting Beijing’s objectives, including new numbers on China’s total financial diplomacy in the region for 2000 to 2017. Building on Ties That Bind, a second report, Influencing the Narrative, explores how China mobilizes students and media to promote its preferred narrative in the EAP region. Enabling readers to dive even deeper into the data, a new interactive dashboard on China's public diplomacy activities has also been launched, containing information from both reports focused on East Asia and the Pacific.