Event: “Managing the U.S.-China Trade and Technology Conflict: Is There a Better Way?”

A CMU-UW Madison-Columbia U-Rand zoom event on “Managing the US-China Trade and Technology Conflict: Is There a Better Way?” (April 17th) with experts (some of whom are coauthors, colleagues, and friends of mine).


Daniel Flatley
Daniel Flatley
National Security Reporter, Bloomberg


Panle Jia Barwick
Panle Jia Barwick
The Todd E. and Elizabeth H. Warnock Distinguished Chair Professor, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Co-founder, Cornell Institute for China Economic Research and Editor for the Journal of Industrial Economics

Lee Branstetter
Lee Branstetter
Professor of Economics And Public Policy (Joint Appointment With The Social And Decision Sciences Department), Heinz College, Carnegie Mellon University


Jason Matheny
Jason Matheny
President and CEO, RAND Corporation

Shang-Jin Wei
Shang-Jin Wei
Columbia Business School and SIPA, Professor of Finance and Economics, Professor of International Affairs, and N.T. Wang Professor of Chinese Business and Economy, Columbia University

Register here.

34 thoughts on “Event: “Managing the U.S.-China Trade and Technology Conflict: Is There a Better Way?”

  1. Moses Herzog

    OK, I have two wild questions to ask, Menzie, the “general reader”, it doesn’t matter, I’d be grateful. Is Lee Branstetter any relation to the great and legendary journalist Ziva Branstetter?? And……. need I have a Zoom account already registered to watch/listen to this great discussion???

    1. Moses Herzog

      OK, I’m not gonna get angry no one answered my question. It will come out later on a YT link or UW-Madison link later?? YES?? OK

      I think this is great topic for discussion

        1. MOses Herzog

          I’m pretty drunk now [ I know you’re shocked ] watching old Letterman shows. Uhm, when I first read your answer I was looking for some funny irony in your answer, but you were just KINDLY answering me. Damn it Menzie, can you just be ironically rude just once?!?!?! Don’t take anything from this, but Uncle Moses was trying very hard to make you smile, ok??? Do you know how HARD I try to garner a response from you and you gave me a response one the “Ziva Branstetter Question”/ I’m gonna ask her office now or when I’m sober and get back to you “and the readers” OK??? That’s my word/promise to you

  2. ltr

    “Managing the U.S.-China Trade and Technology Conflict: Is There a Better Way?”

    Surely, there is a better way:

    America could stop waging an economic war against China, against the 1.4 billion people of China. China has an inherent national right to development, but America’s political class has decided there is no such right and the Chinese need to be crudely vilified and accordingly Chinese development needs to be stopped.

    1. Macroduck

      Oh, shush. When you have something honest to say, we’ll have reason to listen.

      Any claim of “inherent natural right” which you claim for China must apply equally to the U.S. If China has a right to “development”, then so has the U.S. If U.S. leaders decide to limit China’s access to U.S. markets and technology, just as China limit others, what business is that of yours? Or Xi’s? Of China’s? This intellectual posturing is dishonest.

      Look at the Frasier Institute’s economic freedom rankings. China is 116th out of 165. The U.S. is 7th. The Chinn-Ito financial openness index: China -1.23, U.S. 2.31. China has vastly greater access to U.S. markets than the U.S. has to China’s. If anything, you should be apologizing for China’s economic war on the U.S. When the U.S. and China offer anything approaching similar treatment to foreign business interests, you might have reason to whine if the U.S. adds restrictions. So far, we haven’t come close to China’s bad (ra ist) treatment of outsiders.



      By the way, you need to brush up on your “natural law” shtick. The Leviathan doesn’t claim “inherent natural rights”. Humans do, reserving some freedom for themselves against the state. Really dumb for a Chinese government propagandist like you to bring up the rights of individuals, not to mention trying to claim those rights for the state.

      1. Macroduck

        And it wold be really a whole l less hypocritical if you’d add a protest about China’s enslavement of Uyghurs next time you write about “inherent natural rights”.

    2. ltr


      ShanghaiPanda @thinking_panda

      President Xi told a story to President Macron:

      Chinese ancient musicians Yu Boya and Zhong Ziqi’s friendship was strengthened by music. Boya played a piece of music that only Ziqi could understand, demonstrating that true friendship requires mutual understanding and appreciation.

      11:56 AM · Apr 7, 2023

      This story implies that… In international politics, mutual understanding and appreciation are key to building strong relationships between nations… by valuing and respecting each other’s differences, nations can find common ground and work together towards common goals.


      Despite having different political systems, ideologies and histories, both China & France are major powers with significant geopolitical and economic influence.

      Both countries should seek common ground while respecting differences; together maintain peace and prosperity for both nations.

    3. Ivan

      Maybe one of those Jewish space lasers could wipe the self righteous paranoia off Chinese peoples brains and bring them the clarity of understanding “the other side” – then do the same for US. Tom Friedman has a very good column in NYT today – but since it doesn’t align with the official Chinese government line you have neither cited nor commented on it here. The actual situation goes way beyond the simplistic public narratives in either country.

    4. ltr

      A perfect comment:

      [ Surely, there is a better way:

      America could stop waging an economic war against China, against the 1.4 billion people of China. China has an inherent national right to development, but America’s political class has decided there is no such right and the Chinese need to be crudely vilified and accordingly Chinese development needs to be stopped. ]

      1. baffling

        the same could be said about aggressions by china towards Taiwan. remember, the ccp has never controlled the island. their claims are limited to desire only. there is no historical basis for the ccp to control Taiwan. china has as much claim to Taiwan as the USA does. Taiwan has an inherent national right to development. so maybe you could criticize the ccp for its agression towards the peaceful democracy in Taiwan. any words from ltr on this? or just another accusation of racism?

    5. d w

      well, its not like China isnt at war with the US either. both US and China want to defend themselves, or their role in the world

  3. ltr


    April 13, 2023

    China’s space station achieves 100 pct regeneration of oxygen resources

    BEIJING — China’s space station, with the Shenzhou-15 crew now in orbit, can produce 100 percent of its oxygen supply through its onboard regeneration system, according to a space technology conference in Harbin, capital of China’s northernmost Heilongjiang Province.

    The development reflects that fundamental transformation of the environmental control and life-support system for China’s manned spacecraft from “replenishment” to “regeneration,” said Bian Qiang, director of the environmental control and life-support engineering office under the Astronaut Center of China.

    As a key technology for China’s manned space missions, the environmental control and life-support system creates basic living conditions and builds a liveable working environment for the astronauts, thus ensuring their health and safety.

    The system comprises six regeneration subsystems for the following processes: oxygen production by water electrolysis; carbon dioxide removal; harmful gas removal; urine treatment; water treatment; and water production with carbon dioxide and hydrogen.

    “At present, the six systems are in stable operation, with 100 percent of the oxygen resources regenerated and 95 percent of the water resources recycled. This reduces the amount of supplies from the ground by six tonnes every year,” said Bian, addressing the third national manned spaceflight environmental control and life-support technology conference on Thursday.

    He noted that the technology applied in the environmental control and life-support system ranks among the best in the world.

    Over the past 55 years, experts have successfully developed three generations of environmental control and life-support systems for China’s manned spacecraft, as well as relevant products for Shenzhou spacecraft, extra-vehicular spacesuits and the three-module space station complex, according to Bian.

    He added that, since the launch of China’s space station mission, experts have successively tackled many technical difficulties faced by the world, and have realized the fundamental transformation of the system from “replenishment” to “regeneration,” making outstanding contributions to the construction of China’s space station….

  4. ltr


    April 10, 2023

    Equating interest with success
    By Zhang Zhouxiang

    Top mathematician says too much emphasis on exams may not add up to effective learning, Zhang Zhouxiang reports.

    In the history of mathematics, Shing-Tung Yau is undoubtedly a name that sums up expertise.

    Born in 1949, he has achieved outstanding things in the sectors of geometric analysis, differential geometry, differential equations, general relativity, mathematical physics, algebraic geometry, manifold topology, computer graphics, and other subsectors.

    At the age of 28, he secured a tenure at the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton, New Jersey. Six years later, he received the Fields Medal, known as the “Nobel Prize of Mathematics”. Now he remains committed to mathematical research and teaches at multiple higher research institutions in China and the United States.

    On March 23, Yau gave an exclusive interview to China Daily at Qiuzhen College, Tsinghua University….

  5. ltr


    April 12, 2023

    Fostering a new generation of China’s mathematical experts
    By Yuan Shenggao

    A mathematician said the true ascension of a country in mathematics does not lie in following other countries, but rather in finding a correct direction for itself. It is necessary to recognize China’s strengths, and the next three years will see its rise in mathematics.

    Speaking of mathematical studies, Shing-Tung Yau is a name that embodies expertise as he is the first Chinese-born mathematician to win the Fields Medal, the highest international award for the subject. He delivered a speech at the Shanghai Master Forum on Science under the theme of the present and future of mathematics in China, which was held in Fudan University on Friday.

    “Basic science is diverse, but the foundation of basic science lies in mathematical science and theoretical physics. Mathematics is the foundation of both physics and all engineering theories,” Yau said, adding that any strong modernized country must achieve excellence in mathematics.

    Looking back at the development of mathematics as a basic science, Yau said ancient China’s mathematics level is not inferior to those of ancient civilizations in the world, and its main feature is the emphasis on application.

    However, during the mid-Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), the Renaissance in Western countries kicked off the unstoppable development of mathematics, which led to many outstanding mathematicians.

    “We in China also have scholars who can match the world’s top level. My mentor Shiing-shen Chern can be regarded as one of the greatest mathematicians of the 20th century,” Yau said.

    In 1946, Chern returned to China and began to cultivate a group of outstanding mathematicians….

    1. pgl

      the alpha and omega now? Why? Because King Stevie boy has spoken?

      Dude – your pompeous writing style is an excuse for your total lack of analytical skills. Stop polluting this blog with your worthless bloviating.

    2. baffling

      and I want a million dollars.
      Steven, your comment is about as effective as the trump’s attempt to blame china for the coronavirus. net effect, china then refused to cooperate on the origins investigation. just the wrong approach to take if you actually want change to occur. you don’t back your opponent into a corner unless you are willing to take that next step. nobody is going to go to war with china to turn it into a democracy.
      you need to talk about issues that can be changed today, Steven.

  6. David O'Rear

    Thoughts from decades of dealing with Asian IPR issues.

    Deep in the bowels of ancient Chinese philosophy there is something missing: the notion that an idea belongs to one person, and not to anyone else.
    Copying, counterfeiting, or stealing intellectual property, simply do not fall into the category of Things One Should Not Do.

    Until, and unless, that changes – which is highly unlikely – there will be problems in trade relations with the West. Add the strong sense that 19th century Western powers sought to dismantle China, and later have conspired to prevent it from resuming its rightful place as (one of) the leader(s) of humanity, and the Powers That Be have very little interest in enforcing IPR agreements.

    So, there needs to be a reason to change that domestic Chinese reluctance to enforce IPR agreements, or nothing of substance is going to be achieved. Part of the solution is for China to develop its own valuable IPR – as did Japan and the NICs – so that it has a better sense of the issue. Korea learned all about IPR when its 1988 Olympic Games logo was routinely counterfeited, thus denying the organizers the income needed to pay for the games.

    1. Moses Herzog

      David, I know you have a deeper knowledge about China than most people, I grant you that, But don’t you think your knowledge on China, has AGED a little??

      1. David O’Rear

        Certainly, aged like a fine wine, as is often the case with those who focus on a subject throughout their career.
        Did you have something to offer on the subject at hand?

  7. JohnH

    Schulz, Macron, and Lula are beating a path to China. Xi got a red carpet welcome in Riyadh.

    “ Emmanuel Macron has flown into a storm of criticism after he said Europe should not become a “vassal” and must avoid being drawn into any conflict between the US and China over Taiwan..

    “ Brazil’s president wants to end dollar dominance and backs calls for BRICS nations to use their own currency.”

    “BRICS bloc advances another step as Saudi Arabia joins China’s SCO”

    Notably missing in all of this is the erstwhile “indispensable one.” Does the US even do diplomacy or know how to manage trade relations any more? The momentum is all with China.

    1. Macroduck

      Says the guy who never knows what he’s talking about. Get a clue. Then we’ll listen.

      1. pgl

        Jonny boy’s style of trade relations is akin to the Trump trade war. He certainly has no clue what he’s talking about but he sure is good at criticizing those that do.

      2. JohnH

        Apparently Xi is refusing to take calls from Biden and refusing to schedule a visit by Blinken. I guess Xi is too busy hosting leaders from other major countries. Yeah, the US is the “indispensable nation,” but only in the delusions of the political elite.

        Meanwhile Mexico has expressed interest in joining BRICS and has been promoting CELAC, an alternative to the US dominated OAS.

        There are rumblings in Congress about going to war with Mexico…all for freedom and democracy (though AMLO is wildly popular at home)…or because Mexico is expressing interest in joining BRICs? https://www.thenation.com/article/politics/invade-mexico-amlo-cartels/

        Gotta get up to speed, Ducky. The world is changing rapidly, though barely noticed in the NY Times and Washington Post.

      3. JohnH

        Jeff Sachs: “US foreign policy is based on an inherent contradiction and fatal flaw. The aim of US foreign policy is a US-dominated world, in which the US writes the global trade and financial rules, controls advanced technologies, maintains militarily supremacy, and dominates all potential competitors. Unless US foreign policy is changed to recognize the need for a multipolar world, it will lead to more wars, and possibly World War III.

        The inherent contradiction in US foreign policy is that it conflicts with the UN Charter, which commits the US (and all other UN member states) to a global system based on UN institutions in which no single country dominates. The fatal flaw is that the US has just 4 percent of the world population, and lacks the economic, financial, military, and technological capacities, much less the ethical and legal claims, to dominate the other 96 percent.”

        Ducky has yet to come to the realization that we don’t live in the 20th century anymore!

    2. ltr


      April 14, 2023

      New NDB president Dilma Rousseff * outlines priorities

      SHANGHAI — Dilma Vana Rousseff, the newly elected president of the New Development Bank (NDB), said that fighting climate change, addressing social inequality, and investing in infrastructure development will be the focus during her term of office.

      Rousseff made the remarks Thursday during an interview with Xinhua in Shanghai after an inauguration ceremony was held.

      The bank announced on March 24 that its board of governors unanimously elected Rousseff as the president of the bank.

      “I know the importance of the work of multilateral banks to support developing countries, particularly NDB, in addressing their economic, social, and environmental needs. The NDB is a bank that really has the capacity to be a tool for developing countries,” said Rousseff.

      To tackle the infrastructure and development challenges faced by emerging economies, the NDB, with its headquarters in Shanghai, was founded by Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa, and formally opened in July 2015.

      Since its establishment, the NDB has approved 98 projects with a total value of 33.2 billion U.S. dollars. By the end of the first quarter of 2023, the bank had approved 22 projects in Brazil, among others.

      Outlining the priorities during her term at the NDB, Rousseff mentioned infrastructure development, addressing the problem of social inequality and fighting climate change, as well as meeting sustainable development goals.

      The NDB was created to be a global multilateral development bank, and its membership is open to all UN member nations.

      Key areas of the NDB’s operation include clean energy and energy efficiency, transport infrastructure, water and sanitation, environmental protection, social infrastructure, and digital infrastructure.

      In 2021, the NDB admitted Bangladesh, Uruguay, the United Arab Emirates, and Egypt as new member countries.

      * Dilma Rousseff is a Brazilian economist who served as the 36th president of Brazil

  8. ltr

    Deep in the bowels of ancient Chinese philosophy there is something missing: the notion that an idea belongs to one person, and not to anyone else.
    Copying, counterfeiting, or stealing intellectual property, simply do not fall into the category of Things One Should Not Do.

    [ This is of course racist falseness.
    Definitively racist and, of course, false. ]

    1. Macroduck

      For ltr, and Chinese propaganda generally, truth is racism, slavery is freedom, equal treatment is economic warfare.

      Discourse here was so much more honest while ltr was off being re-educated.

    2. David O'Rear

      Anyone even minimally knowledgeable about China recognizes that some of the finest, centuries old works of art are copies of even older works.

      In the case of IPR,
      “It is commonly said that China lacks a tradition of respecting and protecting intellectual property, a disregard that derives from the nation’s Confucianist legacy. In particular, two aspects of Confucianism are important. The first concerns the way that individuals in imperial China could advance socially: that is, not by receiving technical training but rather by learning the classics of Chinese literature and becoming knowledgeable about the past. Confucius said, ‘I transmit rather than create …’”

      Intellectual Property Rights in Emerging Markets, Clarisa Long (ed.), The AEI Press, Washington DC (2000), p. 14.

  9. ltr

    Maybe one of those Jewish space lasers could wipe the self righteous paranoia off Chinese peoples brains…
    Maybe one of those Jewish space lasers could wipe the self righteous paranoia off Chinese peoples brains…
    Maybe one of those Jewish space lasers could wipe the self righteous paranoia off Chinese peoples brains…

    [ Definitively racist. ]

    1. ltr

      “Maybe one of those Jewish space lasers could wipe the self righteous paranoia off Chinese peoples brains…”


      January 24, 2022

      ‘In the End, You’re Treated Like a Spy,’ Says M.I.T. Scientist
      Gang Chen was arrested a year ago on charges of hiding his links to China. The charges were dismissed, but he said the damage — to him, and to American science — has lingered.
      By Ellen Barry

      CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — When Gang Chen returned to his laboratory at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology on Friday, the day after the government had dismissed charges of lying on grant applications, he was surrounded by well-wishers, offering hugs and congratulations.

      There were invitations, too. Colleagues were asking him to join funded research studies, resuming the work that has occupied his adult life.

      Dr. Chen studies heat transfer; he hopes to develop a semiconductor that could convert heat from car exhaust into electricity, or fabric for clothing that could cool the body. During the year since his arrest, that had been the hardest thing, tearing himself away from research.

      Dr. Chen said thank you, but no. After the experience of the last year — the early-morning arrest, the handcuffs and shackles, being described, in a news conference, as loyal to China — he is uncertain if he will ever feel safe applying for U.S. government funds for research again.

      “You work hard, you have good output, you build a reputation,” Dr. Chen said, in a three-and-a-half-hour interview at his M.I.T. office, the first he has given about the case. “The government gets what they want, right? But in the end, you’re treated like a spy. That just breaks your heart. It breaks your confidence.” …

    2. Macroduck

      Says the woman who routinely ignores China’s enslavement of Uyghurs. There is no greater racist commenting here than ltr.

Comments are closed.