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Participants: Conference on Building State Capacity in China and Beyond

Keynote Speaker

Kenneth Lieberthal came to study China as something of an accident.  Having majored in Russian studies as an undergraduate at Dartmouth College, he enrolled for a PhD at Columbia in part because of its outstanding Russian Institute.  But his advisor Zbigniew Brzesinski, who later became National Security Advisor under President Jimmy Carter, indicated he had already covered most of what Columbia had to offer in Russian studies, and advised him to take something else.  Ken chose a course on China taught by prominent China scholar, A. Doak Barnett, who later encouraged Lieberthal to join Columbia’s East Asian Institute and to do a program on Chinese language and politics on his way to his doctorate.  As Lieberthal has often commented since then, he quickly became so fascinated by China that, “it was like stepping in quicksand, and I’ve been sinking ever since.”

Dr. Lieberthal’s career includes teaching positions both at Swarthmore College (1972-1983), and the University of Michigan (1983-2009). From 1986-89, he served as the Director of the U-M China Center. From 1998-2000 Lieberthal held the position of Special Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs and Senior Director for Asia at the National Security Council in the Clinton Administration.  Upon retiring from U-M in 2009, he accepted the position of Chair of the John L. Thornton Center for Chinese Studies at the Brookings Institution in Washington, D.C. where he currently is a senior fellow in the Foreign Policy and the Global Economy and Development programs.

At Michigan, Lieberthal and fellow U-M Professor Michel Oksenberg, who Lieberthal describes as a close friend and mentor, did pioneering work on the study of policy making in China and trained a large number of graduate students in political science and Chinese Studies.  Often referred to as the “Michigan Mafia,” these alumni now hold faculty positions at universities all over the world.  Lieberthal has authored, coauthored, or edited 24 books and monographs and more than 70 journal articles.  These include his well-known textbook, Governing China: From Revolution Through Reform (W.W. Norton 2004), Managing the China Challenge (Brookings Institution Press 2011), and coedited volume, Chinese Politics: New Sources, Methods, and Field Strategies (Cambridge University Press, 2010), which are among the six of his volumes that have also been published in Chinese.

He met Rich Rogel two decades ago at the University of Michigan and encouraged Rogel to join a U-M delegation going to China. Their mutual interest in and fascination with China has been part of a long and productive friendship.

Presenters and Discussants

Arun Agrawal, University of Michigan
Arun Agrawal is a Professor at the School of Natural Resources & Environment at the University of Michigan. He received his PhD from Duke University. Professor Agrawal’s research and teaching emphasize the politics of international development, institutional change, and environmental conservation. He has written critically on indigenous knowledge, community-based conservation, common property, population and resources, and environmental identities. Agrawal coordinates the International Forestry Resources and Institutions network and also serves as editor-in-chief of World Development.

Yuen Yuen Ang, University of Michigan
Yuen Yuen Ang is Assistant Professor in Political Science at the University of Michigan. She studies the coevolution of state and economy, bureaucracy, and corruption in developing countries. Her research has appeared in The Journal of PoliticsComparative PoliticsThe China Quarterly, and other scholarly outlets. Her current book manuscript examines the interaction and mutual transformation of economy and bureaucracy in reform-era China, and the broader lessons on promoting coevolutionary dynamics of development. Before joining Michigan, she was an Assistant Professor in economic and political development at Columbia University SIPA (School of International and Public Affairs).

Mary Gallagher, University of Michigan
Mary Gallagher is Associate Professor of Political Science at the University of Michigan, and also serves as Director of the Lieberthal-Rogel Center for Chinese Studies. She earned her PhD from Princeton University. Professor Gallagher’s research areas are Chinese politics, comparative politics of transitional and developing states, and law and society. The underlying question that drives her research in all of these areas is whether the development of markets is linked to the sequential development of democratic politics and legal rationality.

Kathryn Hendley, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Kathryn Hendley is the William Voss-Bascom Professor of Law and Political Science at the University of Wisconsin–Madison. Hendley received her PhD from the University of California-Berkeley and her JD from the University of California-Los Angeles. Her research focuses on legal and economic reform in the former Soviet Union, notably the role of these reforms on business transactions and corporate governance. Professor Hendley is also a former Director of University of Wisconsin–Madison's Center for Russia, East Europe and Central Asia.

Dan Hough, University of Sussex
Dan Hough is Professor of Politics at the University of Sussex. He earned his PhD from the University of Birmingham. Professor Hough’s research expertise includes political corruption, comparative and party politics, German politics, as well as post-communist politics. Since 2011, he also serves as Director of the Sussex Centre for the Study of Corruption.

Nicholas Howson, University of Michigan
Nicholas Howson is a Professor of Law at the University of Michigan Law School. He received his JD from Columbia Law School and is a former partner of Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP who worked in the firm's New York, London, Paris and Beijing offices. Professor Howson writes and lectures widely on Chinese law topics, focusing on Chinese corporate law and securities regulation, the Chinese capital markets, Chinese legal history, and the development of constitutionalism in Greater China. He acts regularly as a Chinese law expert or party advocate in U.S. and international litigations and/or U.S. government enforcement actions.

Stephen Krasner, Stanford University
Stephen Krasner is the Graham H. Stuart Professor of Political Science at Stanford University. He received his PhD from Harvard University. Professor Krasner’s work has dealt primarily with sovereignty, American foreign policy, and international economic relations. From 2005-2007 he served as Director of Policy Planning at the US State Department, where he spearheaded efforts to reform foreign assistance and target American foreign aid as well as promote international good governance

Edmund Malesky, Duke University
Edmund Malesky is Associate Professor of Political Economy at Duke University. He received his PhD from Duke University. Malesky’s research is dedicated to Southeast Asia, particularly Vietnam, where he explores political institutions and their consequences on business and development. Currently, he serves as the lead researcher for the Vietnam Provincial Competitiveness Index. Professor Malesky is a noted specialist in the political development in Vietnam and China and is finishing a book manuscript, co-edited with The Asian Foundation’s Jonathan Stromseth, on consultative and transparency reforms in China.

Melanie Manion, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Melanie Manion is Vilas-Jordan Distinguished Achievement Professor, with a joint appointment in political science and public affairs at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She received her PhD from the University of Michigan. Manion focuses on contemporary authoritarianism, with empirical research on bureaucratic reform, political corruption, and subnational representation in China. She is the recipient of numerous research awards, most recently from the National Science Foundation, Fulbright Foundation, and University of Wisconsin–Madison Graduate School. She has recently completed a book on Chinese local congresses to be published by Cambridge University Press.

Andrew Mertha, Cornell University
Andrew Mertha is Professor of Government at Cornell University. He received his PhD from the University of Michigan. Professor Mertha’s specialization is on Chinese and Cambodian politics, particularly on political institutions, the policy process, and the exercise of power. He has provided public testimony for the US-China Economic and Security Review Commission and has briefed the Congressional-Executive Commission on China. Mertha has written three books, The Politics of Piracy: Intellectual Property in Contemporary China (Cornell University Press, 2005), China’s Water Warriors: Citizen Action and Policy Change (Cornell University Press, 2008), and Brothers in Arms: Chinese Aid to the Khmer Rouge, 1975-1979 (Cornell University Press, 2014).

Jean Oi, Stanford University
Jean C. Oi is the William Haas Professor in Chinese Politics in the Department of Political Science, Director of the Stanford China Program, and the Lee Shau Kee Director of Stanford’s Center at Peking University (SCPKU). She received her PhD in political science from the University of Michigan. Professor Oi’s work focuses on comparative politics, with special expertise on Chinese political economy, rural politics, and the politics of corporate restructuring. Currently, she is researching the challenges of governance in China’s rapid urbanization, including the re-organization of rural communities and the provision of public goods, especially affordable housing.

John Padgett, University of Chicago
John  Padgett is Professor of Political Science at the University of Chicago. He received his PhD from the University of Michigan. Padgett’s work specializes in American politics, organizational theory, mathematical models, and public policy and is best known for his models of the federal budget process. He is a Director of the Organizations and State-Building Workshop. Padgett is the co-author of The Emergence of Organizations and Markets.

Vivienne Shue, University of Oxford
Vivienne Shue, FBA is Professor Emeritus of Contemporary China Studies at the University of Oxford and a Fellow of St. Antony’s College. Best known, perhaps, for one of her early works, The Reach of the State (1988), other books include State Power and Social Forces (co-edited with Joel Migdal and Atul Kohli, 1994),Tethered Deer: Government and Economy in a Chinese County(co-authored with Marc Blecher, 1996), and Paying for Progress in China: Public Finance, Human Welfare and Changing Patterns of Inequality (co-edited with Christine Wong, 2007). A recent retrospective essay, “Mao’s China: Putting Politics in Perspective” will soon be published by Harvard University Press in a volume co-edited by Jeremy Brown and Matthew Johnson, Maoism at the Grassroots.

Barbara Stallings, Brown University
Barbara Stallings is the William R. Rhodes Research Professor at the Watson Institute at Brown University, where she researches and teaches classes on Latin American, East Asian, and international political economy. Professor Stallings received PhDs from Cambridge University and Stanford University. Prior to her work at Brown, she was director of the Economic Development Division of the United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America. She is also editor of Studies in Comparative and International Development (SCID).

Danie Stockmann, Leiden University
Danie Stockmann is Associate Professor at Leiden University, teaching Chinese and comparative politics, political communication and public opinion, as well as research design. She received her PhD from the University of Michigan. Professor Stockmann’s recent book Media Commercialization and Authoritarian Rule in China (Cambridge University Press, 2013) explores the effects of media marketization on the production of news and media credibility among audiences.  Her new project, funded by the European Research Council, traces the development of social media in China and its impact on political engagement in Chinese society.

Eric Thun, University of Oxford
Eric Thun is the Peter Moores Associate Professor in Chinese Business at Saïd Business School at the University of Oxford. Thun’s focus areas are business in China and international business as well the dynamics of emerging market competition. He devotes his research to issues of industrial development in China.

Kellee Tsai, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology
Kellee S. Tsai is Division Head and Professor of Social Science at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, and Professor of Political Science at Johns Hopkins University. She earned her PhD from Columbia University and is the author or editor of five books, including Back-Alley Banking: Private Entrepreneurs in China (2002), Capitalism without Democracy: The Private Sector in Contemporary China (2007), and State Capitalism, Institutional Adaptation, and the Chinese Miracle (co-edited with Barry Naughton, forthcoming). Her current research concerns the local developmental implications of remittances and ethnic investment in China and India

Benjamin van Rooij, University of California-Irvine
Benjamin van Rooij is the John S. and Marilyn Long Professor of US-China Business and Law and academic director of the John S. and Marilyn Long US-China Institute for Business and Law at the University of California-Irvine. He received his PhD from the University of Leiden. Professor van Rooij spends his research on the implementation of law in comparative perspective and, specifically, how to improve this implementation in emerging markets with weak enforcement and widespread violations of law.

Yuhua Wang, University of Pennsylvania
Yuhua Wang is an assistant professor in Political Science at the University of Pennsylvania. He received his PhD from the University of Michigan. Professor Wang’s research and teaching interests include political economy of development, authoritarian politics, East Asian political economy, Chinese politics, and American politics. His book Tying the Autocrat’s Hands: The Rise of the Rule of Law in China (Cambridge University Press, forthcoming December 2014) examines how China’s opening up has contributed to a partial form of the rule in law.