Chinese Economic Size Overtaking Japan (2008-2014) and the United States (from 2014 to 2030?)

Colloquium | April 15 | 4-5:30 p.m. | 180 Doe Library

 Ezra Vogel, Henry Ford II Professor of the Social Sciences Emeritus, Harvard University

 Institute of East Asian Studies (IEAS), Center for Chinese Studies (CCS), Center for Japanese Studies (CJS)

Before 1895, in the bilateral relationship between Japan and China, China was in the top position. From 1895-2008, Japan was in the top position. Between 2008-2014 as the size of the Chinese economy surpassed that of Japan, it had profound implications for the nature of their relationship. From 2014 until 2030, as the size of the Chinese economy surpasses that of the United States, it is having profound implications for the nature of their relationship.

Speaker Bio:

Vogel, a specialist on modern China and Japan, received his Ph D at Harvard in 1958 in Sociology in the Department of Social Relations and was professor at Harvard from 1967-2000. In 1973, he succeeded John Fairbank to become the second Director of Harvard's East Asian Research Center. At Harvard he served as director of the US-Japan Program, director of the Fairbank Center, and as the founding director of the Asia Center. He was the director of the undergraduate concentration in East Asian Studies from its inception in 1972 until 1991. He taught courses on Chinese society, Japanese society, and industrial East Asia.

From fall 1993 to fall 1995, Vogel took a two-year leave of absence from Harvard to serve as the National Intelligence Officer for East Asia at the National Intelligence Council in Washington. In 1996 he chaired the American Assembly on China and edited the resulting volume, Living With China. His book Japan As Number One (1979), in Japanese translation, became a best seller in Japan, and his book Deng Xiaoping and the Transformation of China (2011), in Chinese translation, became a best seller in China. His book on the long history of Sino-Japanese relations (China and Japan: Facing History) was published in July 2019. Among his other works are Japan's New Middle Class (1963), Canton Under Communism (1969), Comeback (1988), One Step Ahead in China: Guangdong Under Reform (1989), and The Four Little Dragons: The Spread of Industrialization in East Asia (1991).

Vogel has spent a total of over five years in Asia conducting research and has visited Japan at least once a year since 1958 and China at least once a year since 1985. He lectures frequently in Asia, in both Chinese and Japanese. He hosts a weekly speaker series for the Fairbank Center on Critical Issues Confronting China. He has received numerous honors, including twelve honorary degrees. He has been an advisor for the National Committee on US-China Relations program to cultivate public intellectuals who work on China since its inception in 2004 and the Mansfield Foundation program to cultivate public intellectuals who work on Japan since its inception in 2009.

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 All Audiences

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