The long game: New book probes the uneasy future of China’s relationship with the United States

TORONTO, ON – The global financial crisis accelerated China’s rise in the world economy, disrupting a post-cold war status quo in which the United States was the world’s largest and most dynamic economy and undisputed super power. The world economic order is shifting. Can those who manage international commercial, cultural or political exchanges afford to ignore this shift?

In her eagerly awaited new book Partners and Rivals: The Uneasy Future of China’s Relationship with the United States, published by Rotman-UT Publishing, award-winning economist and University of Toronto professor  Wendy Dobson emphasizes the asymmetry in our familiarity with US strengths and weaknesses and lack of familiarity with China’s huge domestic challenges and view of the world.  She argues that with both governments deeply preoccupied at home and the two economies so deeply intertwined they share a common preference for international stability.  They will inevitably be rivals as China’s economy overtakes the US in size.  But they will also be partners, cooperating with neither in a position to upstage the other.  She examines how each views itself and the other, how China views the world and the existing institutions, and how and why they can and should cooperate.

Prof. Dobson is co-director of the Institute for International Business at the Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto, and Chair of the International Steering Committee of the Pacific Trade and Development (PAFTAD) Conference, a pan-Pacific economic research network.  Notable amongst her many award-winning books on Asia and the international economy is Gravity Shift: How Asia’s New Economic Powerhouses Will Shape the 21st Century. The Mandarin translation received the annual Best Book in Finance and Economics award (2010) from, a leading Chinese financial website.


“Partners and Rivals forcefully reminds us that all politics, including geopolitics, start at home. Wendy Dobson’s thoughtful, informed, and up-to-date analysis of the drivers and future prospects of US-China relations is grounded in the domestic challenges that China must not only address, but overcome. She argues that no power becomes “super” absent a strong economic basis, which is a useful and important reminder that the stage is set for a very long game indeed.” — Joseph Caron, former Canadian Ambassador to China.

“The world is shifting profoundly, with China at the epicentre of the changes in global economies and with the evolving US-China relationship at the forefront of reshaping global geopolitics. Understanding these pivotal trends is crucial, and Partners and Rivals delivers a compelling analysis of the dynamics at play. Professor Dobson’s book is an excellent guide to a complex journey, clearly setting out the logic and conditions for greater cooperation between China and the US.” — The Honourable Kevin G. Lynch, Vice Chairman, BMO Financial Group and Former Clerk of the Privy Council and Secretary to the Cabinet

Rotman-UT Publishing is an imprint of University of Toronto Press. Founded in 1901, University of Toronto Press (UTP) is Canada’s oldest scholarly press and one of the largest university presses in North America, releasing over 200 new scholarly, reference, and general-interest books each year, as well as maintaining a backlist of over 3500 titles in print. For more information, visit

The Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto is redesigning business education for the 21st century with a curriculum based on Integrative Thinking. Located in the world’s most diverse city, the Rotman School fosters a new way to think that enables the design of creative business solutions. For more information, visit

*Source: University of Toronto

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