Chinese Political Science Review

, Volume 3, Issue 1, pp 81–99 | Cite as

Public Perceptions of International Leadership in China and the United States

  • Stefano Burzo
  • Xiaojun Li
Original Article


Many fear that with Trump taking the helm, the United States will scale back its international leadership role in global governance, leaving a void that is too big for any single country to fill. Others are hopeful that emerging powers such as China will be able to step in and provide international leadership to solve global governance challenges, from climate change to nuclear nonproliferation. In this study, we explore the Chinese and American publics’ perceptions and views on international leadership in the Trump era. Results from two parallel surveys conducted in China and the United States shed light on how ordinary citizens in these two countries conceptualize international leadership and how their views contrast with conventional wisdom and with each other. Given the increasingly larger role played by public opinion in the foreign policies of both democratic and authoritarian countries, the findings of this study will have important policy implications.


International leadership Public opinion China United States Global governance 



Funding was provided by University of British Columbia's Hampton Research Grant (Grant no. F14-01146).


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Copyright information

© Fudan University and Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Political ScienceUniversity of British ColumbiaVancouverCanada

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