Positive equilibrium in USA - China relations: durable or not?

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Robert Sutter

Robert Sutter has been a Visiting Professor in the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown

University since 2001. Professor Sutter specialized in Asian and Pacific Affairs and US foreign policy

in a US government career. He held a variety of analytical and supervisory positions

with the Library of Congress, and also worked with the Central Intelligence Agency, the Department

of State, and the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. After leaving the Library of Congress

where he was for many years the Senior Specialist in International Politics for the Congressional Research Service, served as the National Intelligence Officer for East Asia and the Pacific at the US

Government’s National Intelligence Council. He received a Ph.D. in History and East Asian

Languages from Harvard University. He has held adjunct faculty positions with Georgetown, George

Washington, and Johns Hopkins Universities and the University of Virginia.  He has

published 18 books, numerous articles and several hundred government reports dealing with

contemporary East Asian and pacific Countries and their relations with the United States.


Repeated episodes of Chinese public pressure against the United States during 2009 and 2010 on a wide range of issues involving seas near China, Taiwan, Tibet, and economic disputes are subject to different interpretations but on balance they do not seem to seriously upset the prevailing positive equilibrium between the US and Chinese governments.


The United States; China; engagement; assertiveness; push-back

How to cite this article

Sutter, Robert (2011). "
Positive equilibrium in U.S. - China Relations: Durable or not?”. JANUS.NET e-journal of International Relations, Vol. 2, N.º 1, Spring 2011. Consulted [online] on date of last visit, observare.ual.pt/janus.net/en_vol2_n1_art1.

Article received in December 2010 and accepted for publication in March 2011