IDS Evidence Report 116

China’s Engagement in International Development Cooperation: The State of the Debate

Published on 1 February 2015

This research aims to investigate the recent evolution of China’s discourse on development and aid. More precisely, how do China’s policymakers and influential scholars understand and debate China’s role in the field of international development aid, specifically in the context of China as a ‘rising power’?

However, to reflect upon Chinese discourse in this manner is contrary to the Chinese perspective itself, where development and aid are rarely referred to in relation to each other. Instead, in the Chinese mind-set, to this day, national development and foreign aid seem to be two unrelated issues.

It is exactly this point that shapes China’s attitude toward aid and creates divergence between China and the West on international development cooperation. Meanwhile, when dealing with China’s current policy debate on foreign aid, one primary issue is that the debate is essentially fostered by the West.

Cite this publication

Zhang, Y.; Gu, J. and Chen, Y. (2015) China’s Engagement in International Development Cooperation: The State of the Debate, IDS Evidence Report 116, Brighton: IDS


Jing Gu

Research Fellow, Centre Director

Yunnan Chen

Research Officer

Publication details

published by
Zhang, Y., Gu, J. and Chen, Y.
IDS Evidence Report, issue 116


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