China in 2012: Great Challenges and Few Options

Yawei Liu
Janurary 26, 2012


China has achieved amazing accomplishments in the past three decades and has also stretched thin. China needs very many things in 2012 and beyond in order not to fall off a cliff or confront a popular rebellion. What, then, does China need? Launching political reform? Developing a civil society? Having a new culture? Allowing people to worship freely? While the world may not come to an end in 2012 China has to weather both domestic and international challenges to be a true and meaningful great power.

Yawei Liu is the Director of The Carter Center’s China Program. Yawei Liu has been a member of numerous Carter Center missions to monitor Chinese village, township and county people’s congress deputy elections from 1997 to 2011. He has also observe delections in Nicaragua, Peru and Taiwan. He has written extensively on China’s political developments and grassroots democracy. He edited three Chinese book series: Rural Election and Governance in Contemporary China (Northwestern University Press, Xian, 2002 and 2004), the Political Readers (China Central Translation Bureau Press, 2006) and Elections and Governance (Northwestern University Press, Xian, 2009-2011). Yawei Liu is the coauthor of Obama: The Man Who Will Change America(Chinese language, 2008). He is the founder and editor of China Elections and Governance ( and, a website sponsored by The Carter Center on political and election issues of China (2002 to now). He is the founder and editor- in-chief of the 21st Century International Review, an academic journal that is published in Hong Kong.