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online discussion forum: Making Chinese Foreign Aid Transparent – What is Hidden in Data and Policy Documents?

28. October 2021, 13:00 - 14:00

Since the turn of the millennium, China has provided record amounts of development aid and other types of development finance to countries around the globe. However, its grant-giving and lending activities remain intransparent. This is not least due to the institutional complexity of China’s system of foreign aid and the absence of comprehensive reporting systems for development projects. How can we therefore try to piece through the veil of secrecy and complexity? In this third Global China Conversation, Brad Parks and Marina Rudyak will help us unravel some of the underlying processes. Marina Rudyak will guide us through the complexity of the institutional setup and outline what we can learn from official government documents. Brad Parks will offer us a bird’s-eye view of China’s geo-economic strategy before and after the introduction of the Belt and Road Initiative in 2013, by looking at a uniquely comprehensive and granular dataset of international development finance from China that captures 13,427 projects worth $843 billion across 165 countries in every major world region over an 18-year period.

The event consists of different impulse lectures followed by a discussion.
Global China Conversation #3 will take place in English.

The impulse lectures are based on the following publication:
Malik, A., Parks, B., Russell, B., Lin, J., Walsh, K., Solomon, K., Zhang, S., Elston, T., and S. Goodman. (2021). Banking on the Belt and Road: Insights from a new global dataset of 13,427 Chinese development projects. Williamsburg, VA: AidData at William & Mary. https://www.aiddata.org/publications/banking-on-the-belt-and-road

Online via Zoom, please register here.


Dr. Bradley Parks, AidData

Dr. Bradley Parks is the Executive Director of AidData, a research lab at William and Mary. He holds a Ph.D. in International Relations from the London School of Economics and Political Science. His research has been published in academic and policy journals, including Science, Governance, American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, the Journal of Development Economics, World Development, the National Interest, and China Economic Quarterly. He is the author of three books, including Banking on Beijing: The Aims and Impacts of China’s Overseas Development Program (Cambridge University Press). Dr. Parks is also a Non-Resident Fellow at the Center for Global Development, where he works on issues related to the Belt and Road Initiative.

Dr. Marina Rudyak, Heidelberg University

Marina Rudyak is a post-doctoral researcher at the Department of Sinology of Heidelberg University. She is the founder of china-aid-blog.com and a member of the Global Diplomacy Lab, the Sino-German Future Bridge, and the BMW Foundation Responsible Leaders Network. She has previously worked with the German Agency for International Cooperation (GIZ) in Beijing as Program Manager of the multi-country project “Regional Economic Cooperation and Integration Asia-China.” Her research interests are Chinese foreign aid and development lending policy with a focus on Africa and Central Asia, as well as the political ideology of the Chinese Communist Party and coded communication in Chinese politics.


Prof. Dr. Andreas Fuchs, University of Göttingen, IfW Kiel

Andreas Fuchs is Professor of Development Economics, Director of the Centre for Modern East Asian Studies at the University of Göttingen, and Director of the Kiel Institute China Initiative. His research analyzes trade, investment and development policies with quantitative methods and a special focus on China and other emerging economies. He also investigates the political economy of natural disasters, humanitarian crises, and non-militarized conflicts.


28. October 2021
13:00 - 14:00


hosted by the Kiel Institute China Initiativ & co-hosted by CeMEAS-Centre for Modern East Asian Studies