30 November China Seminar: Matt Ferchen: Political risk assessment

Political Risk Assessment with Chinese Characteristics: Venezuela and Beyond

Matt Ferchen (Tsinghua University)

Beginning around 2011, when Chinese investments and citizens were caught up in unexpected turmoil and political change in places like Libya and Myanmar, Chinese government officials, academics and business leaders began to focus on better understanding and managing “political risk”. Yet at this same time China was building up its largest overseas loan portfolio, and a close diplomatic relationship, with arguably the highest risk country in the Americas: Venezuela. This talk will discuss how the concept, and management, of political risk has evolved in China in recent years and how despite these efforts China’s relations with Venezuela highlight the difficulties and contradictions in China’s new risk management efforts. The discussion will include a focus on how the political economy of “stability”, both in China’s domestic and foreign affairs, is central to understanding how risk is conceptualized and, at least in the case of Venezuela, (mis)managed.

Matt Ferchen is an associate professor in the Department of International Relations at Tsinghua University in Beijing and also a resident scholar at the Carnegie-Tsinghua Center for Global Policy. Professor Ferchen has lived, studied and worked in China since 2000 and his research and teaching focus on the domestic and international political economy of China’s evolving development model. He has a Ph.D. in Government from Cornell University and a Master’s in international affairs from Johns Hopkins SAIS.


When & where: Wednesday 30 November 15:15-17:00 p.m. De Vrieshof 4/006 Leiden University, Leiden

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