Chinese Linkage in Asia | Amsterdam University Press Journals Online


As China has increased its presence and cooperation on multiple fronts under the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), this paper proposes a multidimensional concept of ‘Chinese Linkage’ to understand various layers and levels of engagement under BRI. I conceptualize the Chinese Linkage in Asia based on the seminal work of Levitsky and Way’s (Western) Linkage along five dimensions, namely, economic, social, cultural, communication, and intergovernmental ties for 32 countries in Asia for the period 2000-2020, with 2013 as a benchmark year for the BRI launch. By analyzing diverse cases in Asia including sub-regions such as South, Southeast, and Central Asia, I examine the cross-national variation in the degree of Chinese linkage in the BRI partner countries and their patterns of engagement. This region-wide analysis allows understanding of various mechanisms of exchanges and public diplomacy in a systematic manner under China’s BRI in Asia.


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