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Call For Research Proposals

Issued: October 15, 2010

Executive Summary

The Research Center for Chinese Politics & Business (RCCPB) at Indiana University is proud to announce this Call for Research Proposals for scholars and experts who want to deepen the world’s understanding of the growing role of China in global governance. Funding will be provided to participants at the $5,000, $3,000, or $1,000 level depending on the nature of their research and involvement in the initiative. Review of research proposals will begin on December 10, 2010.


Area of Research Inquiry

Globalization has created an interdependent world, but the development of institutions and processes to manage this transformation has not kept apace. This challenge is intensified by China's economic development, its integration into the global economy, and its deepening participation in international regimes. We need a deeper understanding of Chinese involvement in global governance institutions in order to: 1) Build our empirical and theoretical knowledge about the dynamics of the behavior of individual participants and of global governance regimes more generally; 2) Improve the capacity of Chinese and others to be constructive participants in global governance; and 3) Create a stronger foundation for cooperation to resolve pressing problems facing international society. 

In July 2010 the RCCPB hosted a Workshop on China and Global Governance in Beijing; the participants analyzed Chinese involvement in various international regimes and discussed the most important areas in need of further research. Based on this meeting and further discussions, the RCCPB is anxious to support empirical research which examines the involvement of China’s government, industry, experts, and other stakeholders in at least one of the following areas of global governance: trade, finance, investment, technology standards, intellectual property rights, competition policy, energy and commodities, the environment, and public health.

We particularly encourage research studies that:

1. Focus on factors that influence the effectiveness of Chinese participants in promoting their interests in global governance arrangements and the likelihood of cooperation between Chinese and other participants in global governance. Studies that examine Chinese compliance are welcome as long as they also shed light on effectiveness and cooperation.

2. Recognize that China is not a unitary actor, that various parts of the Chinese government and society participate in global governance, and that their capacity and interests may not always be identical.

3. Examine either the setting of rules or the use of rules, at either the international level or the domestic/national level.

4. Analyze the potential international factors that may shape Chinese participation in global governance, including: the distribution of power, the nature of international organizations and regimes, bilateral and regional relationships, and economic trends; and

5. Examine how Chinese involvement in global governance is shaped by social, economic, and political factors in China, such as the policy process, the bureaucracy, central-local relations, interest groups, epistemic communities, and state-society relations.

The RCCPB welcomes empirical research that utilizes different types of data (case studies, large-N, and cross-national comparisons) as well as different methods of collecting and analyzing the data (qualitative or quantitative). Regardless of which approach, projects should have a clear analytical puzzle, independent and dependent variables, and research design.



The RCCPB will provide support at three different levels:

1. $5,000 for projects that require international travel to collect new data and result in the writing of one working paper for the RCCPB Working Paper Series.

2. $3,000 for projects that require the collection of new data within the home country of the scholar and result in the writing of one working paper for the RCCPB Working Paper Series.

3. $1,000 for papers invited to be published in the RCCPB’s Working Paper Series that are based on previously collected data.


Scholarly Opportunities

In addition to contributing to the RCCPB’s Working Paper Series, the RCCPB will coordinate revision of the working papers and help submit them for publication in leading scholarly journals and in edited volumes. Further, all participants in the Initiative will be invited to attend at least one of four conferences to be held during the next three years, in Beijing (Fall 2011), Indiana (Spring 2012), Tokyo (Fall 2012), and Geneva (Spring 2013). The RCCPB will also provide funding to host two Initiative participants as visiting scholars for one-month stays at Indiana University for each of the next three years. Finally, participants will have the opportunity for extended interaction with leading experts, businesspeople, and senior officials involved in global governance.


Funders and Strategic Partners

The RCCPB is grateful for the generous financial support of the Henry Luce Foundation and Indiana University. In addition, it is proud to recognize three organizations as strategic partners in this initiative: the China Institute for WTO Studies at the University of International Business and Economics in Beijing, the Institute of Social Science at the University of Tokyo, and the International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development in Geneva.


To Apply

Those interested in participating in the initiative should submit a two-page, single-spaced Research Proposal to the RCCPB which explains: 1) Your research topic, research design, plan for collecting data, and the potential contribution of the study to understanding China and global governance; 2) How your project fits with the guidelines in the Initiative’s Area of Research Inquiry”; 3) Which level of funding you seek and why; 4) Whether you are interested in becoming a visiting scholar at the RCCPB; and 5) Which conferences you would prefer to attend. Please submit the proposal and a bio or curriculum vitae to Scott Kennedy, Director, RCCPB, via email, to Review of proposals will begin on December 10, 2010. For additional information about the RCCPB’s Initiative on Global Governance, visit the center’s website,




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