Fortifying China: The Struggle to Build a Modern Defense Economy

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9780801446924: Fortifying China: The Struggle to Build a Modern Defense Economy
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Fortifying China explores the titanic struggle to turn China into an aspiring world-class military technological power. The defense economy is leveraging the country's vibrant civilian economy and gaining access to foreign sources of technology and know-how. Drawing on extensive Chinese-language sources, Tai Ming Cheung explains that this transformation has two key dimensions. The defense economy is being reengineered to break down bureaucratic barriers and reduce the role of the state, fostering a more competitive and entrepreneurial culture to facilitate the rapid diffusion and absorption of technology and knowledge. At the same time, the civilian and defense economies are being integrated to form a dual-use technological and industrial base.

In Cheung's view, the Chinese authorities believe this strategy will play a key role in supporting long-term defense modernization. For China's neighbors and the United States, understanding China's technological, industrial, and military capabilities is critical to the formulation of economic and security policies. Fortifying China provides crucial insight into the impact of China's dual-use technology strategy. Cheung's "systems of innovation" framework considers the structure, dynamics, and performance of the defense economy from a systems-level perspective.

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"In Fortifying China, Tai Ming Cheung addresses a critically important issue in China's rise. His discussions of the defense industry and civil-military industrial base are well researched and illustrated with new fieldwork. Fortifying China mines hundreds of primary resource materials that have not been discussed in an English-language work before."-Adam Segal, Council on Foreign Relations

About the Author:

Tai Ming Cheung is Director of the Institute on Global Conflict and Cooperation at the University of California, San Diego, where he also leads the institute's Study of Technology and Innovation project. Previously, he was based in northeast Asia (Hong Kong, China, and Japan) as a journalist for the Far Eastern Economic Review and subsequently as a political and business risk consultant for a number of companies, including PricewaterhouseCoopers.

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