11/2023 SIEL Conversation


The aim of SIEL Conversations is to bring together authors and commentators to give talks that are idea-focused so as to foster learning and inspiration, and provoke conversations that matter. Each SIEL Conversation will last approximately one hour and will include commentary from the speakers, with questions from the public.


Title: China’s Belt and Road Initiative: A New Model of Transnational Economic Governance?

China is promoting a new model of transnational economic governance through the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), a high-level policy framework shaping China’s outward economic activities. The BRI’s stated aims include policy coordination, infrastructure connectivity, unimpeded trade, financial integration and people-to-people bonds in countries along overland and maritime trade routes. It involves more than 6,000 investment projects with a combined value of over USD 1 trillion.

Engaging with existing scholarship on transnational governance, this SIEL Conversation considers the various modes of governance that China uses under the framework of the BRI. It aims to identify various cross-cutting characteristics of governance under the BRI, including the construction of new networks with China as the central node and the growing use of informal, power-based modes of governance, particularly where China is the more powerful actor.

The speakers will consider topics including the internationalization of the RMB, the roll-out of China’s central bank digital currency and associated payments infrastructure, China’s reliance on informalism in the resolution of BRI disputes, and legal and political dynamics in investor-state contract renegotiation under the BRI. Each speaker also considers the extent to which modes of governance that China deploys under the BRI depart from and/or seek to displace established Western structures of governance in the relevant field.



  • Shen Wei, KoGuan Distinguished Professor, Shanghai Jiao Tong University
  • Heng Wang, Professor, Singapore Management University
  • Kun Fan, Associate Professor, University of New South Wales
  • Zhenyu Xiao, University of New South Wales



Date: The event is scheduled for Tuesday 28 November 2023 at the following times and more information can be found below:

9 am London
10 am Berlin
5 pm Singapore
8 pm Sydney

Register for the event at: https://us06web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_ykDT8uOWScueojjaDs5OYw#/registration

You can download the below poster, including the event’s description and speakers affiliation here.

SIEL Conversation (November 2023)