U.S. - China Relations: Important and Challenging

Wednesday, November 14, 2012 - 6:00pm
Speaker: Dr. Douglas Spelman
Senior Advisor, Kissinger Institute on China and the United States at the Woodrow Wilson Center in Washington


Dr. Douglas Spelman, until very recently Deputy Director of the Kissinger Institute on China and the United States at the Woodrow Wilson Center in Washington.  He is now a Senior Adviser at the Institute.  Dr. Spelman will speak about 'U.S. - China Relations: Important and Challenging.' 
Managing our relationship with China will be our most important political, economic, commercial, and strategic task in the near and the long-term future. There are few as experienced and qualified to address this subject as Dr. Spelman.  
He received his BA from Oberlin College and his MA and Ph.D in History and East Asian Languages from Harvard University. In 1972, he served as interpreter for the visit to the United States of the Chinese ping-pong team. After several years teaching Chinese history at Bucknell University and managing student exchange programs in Taiwan (Oberlin-in-China) and Hong Kong (Yale - China), in 1977 he joined the U.S. Foreign Service. From 2002 - 2005, he served as U.S. Consul General in Shanghai. Dr. Spelman retired in 2007 with the rank of Minister-Counselor in the Senior Foreign Service, later joining the Kissinger Institute. 

Dr. Spelman will speak to Forum members just a few days after our Presidential election but also immediately following the Chinese Communist Party Congress, to be held on November 8, two days later. The party Congress is held every ten years to arrange a change in Chinese leadership. This is a critical development that will be watched very closely around the world. There are few better equipped than Dr. Douglas Spelman to speak about American relations with China, to make sense of the Party Congress and to tell us what it means for the United States and a new Administration.

Dr. Spelman is married to Nancy Latting Spelman, a psychologist, and they have two grown daughters.