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Xi Jinping’s Party: Did the 20th Congress Do Anything that Matters?

Xi Jinping’s Party: Did the 20th Congress Do Anything that Matters?

A panel discussion with Dr Holly Snape, Professor William Hurst and Professor Kerry Brown, 30 November, 13.00 GMT

The abiding image from the 20th National Congress of the CCP will be the mysterious removal of former President Hu Jintao. Even by the customarily opaque standards of Chinese politics this scene is hard to read. But it is not the only uncertainty about the five-yearly event. Join our panel discussion exploring the significance of this year’s National Congress.

Dr Holly Snape (@HollySnapeWang) is a British Academy Post-Doctoral Fellow in the School of Social and Political Sciences at the University of Glasgow. Her current research attempts to understand the relationship between the Chinese Communist Party and the government. Previously she worked in Beijing at the School of Government, Peking University where she studied Chinese political discourse and its role in the political system. She received her PhD from the University of Bristol spending much of her time based at Tsinghua University’s NGO Research Center studying grassroots NGOs and the state-society relationship.

William Hurst (@wjhurst) is Chong Hua Professor of Chinese Development at the University of Cambridge. He received his PhD in 2005 from the University of California-Berkeley and subsequently held positions at Oxford, the University of Texas at Austin, the University of Toronto, Northwestern University, and Harvard University’s Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study. He moved to Cambridge in 2021. His research is especially concentrated on Chinese foreign policy, international relations, and evolving role in the world, as well as the broader politics of the South China Sea and Southeast Asia in general.

Kerry Brown (@Bkerrychina) is Professor of Chinese Studies and Director of the Lau China Institute at King’s College London. His main interests are around the development of politics and society in China from 1949 onwards. He has published more than twenty books and has written in particular about the Chinese Communist Party as a cultural rather than a purely political organisation and about contemporary elite political figures such as Hu Jintao, Xi Jinping, and about China’s international relations. In particular, he has produced studies on the kinds of power China’s current leader Xi Jinping has, and how to explain the remarkable consolidation at least of symbolic power in the hands of one elite figure.

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