BICCS aims at enhancing understanding of China’s development, its impact on the global order and the evolving Sino-European relations. Its team is committed to comprehensive academic research in four main clusters.

China and the European Union: Mutual expectations of the China-EU relationship are high and encompass numerous sectors from the creation of an open and balanced trade regime to environmental standards and human rights.  BICCS focuses first and foremost on the impact of the EU’s conditional engagement policy and the progress in the many sectoral dialogues. A second area of interest relates to China’s perception of the EU as a global actor and the influence of the People’s Republic on the political coherence of the Union. China is becoming the economic and diplomatic nerve centre of Asia. Although Beijing is reluctant to demonstrate its influence overtly, it exerts an increasing influence on the agenda of its neighbours and the many regional organisations. The aim of the BICCS programme is to unravel the dynamics and impact of China’s regional policy and especially how it interacts with other regional powers, such as India, Japan and Russia. Recent output:

March 2010: Article in New Europe on China and the world order (Read)
March 2010: Asia Paper on the EU and the emerging markets. (Read)
March 2010: Article in The International Spectator on Sino-European cooperation in regard to climate change. (Read)
January 2010: Op-ed in Foreign Policy: Green with envy (Read)
December 2009: Article in Beijing Review on the EU after Lisbon (Read)
December 2009: Asia Paper: Climate change, China and the EU (Read)
December 2009: Op-ed in China Daily: Waiting for the indispensable axis to emerge (Read)
November 2009: Asia Paper: The elusive axis (Read)
September 2009: Op-ed in EU Observer: The EU challenges Europe's climate change leadership (Read)
December 2007: Book: China-EU: Common future (Read)


China's foreign and security policy: As China's power rises rapidly, the question arises how it will interact with the rest of the world. Is China's growth driving a new episode of great power rivalry? How does it try to project its influence into Asia and other regions? How is China's diplomatic thinking evolving as it on the one hand becomes more exposed to the expectations of other players, while on the other it gets more confident about its position in international affairs? BICCS mainly looks at those questions from the perspective of international relations theory. Key areas of interests are China’s policies towards Asia,Sino-African relations, China’s new security thinking, and its impact on the global order. Recent output:

April 2010: Asia Paper on the role of Chinese think tanks in foreign policy making (Read)
April 2010: Op-ed in Global Times on China's domestic economic challenges and the impact on its foreign policy (Read)
March 2010: Article in New Europe on China and the world order
February 2010: Article in Géopolitique de l'Europe: Etats-Unis et Kazakhstan: Un partenariat enraciné (Read)
January 2010: Discussion paper: Will China redifine great power politics (Read)
January 2010: Book: China and India: Prospects for peace (Read)
December 2009: Op-ed on the Clingendael Institute's Asia Forum: China's vulnerability in Africa (Read)
December 2009: Article in Journal of Strategic Studies: The military security dilemma between China and India (Read)
July 2009: Article in Parameters: China's new security policy towards Africa (Read)
August 2009: Article in The Washington Quarterly: Embracing China's global security ambitions (Read)


China's  social and economic transition: China’s economic performance astonishes the world. However, is this remarkable growth sustainable? BICCS investigates China’s economic policy, investment climate and international trade issues. A core topic in BICCS economic research on China concerns its outward foreign direct investments, which are analysed in terms of origin, destination, motivation, legal form, as well as managerial needs and expectations. Our research aims at both developing a methodology to optimally identify potential Chinese investors, and assessing the attractiveness of host countries for Chinese investors. Another focal point is the role of China's business elites and transnational networks in policy-making. Recent output:

March 2010: Asia Paper: Google for freedom (Read)
January 2010: Asia Paper: Europe, China and the expectation for human rights (Read)
November 2009: Asia Paper: Chinese strategic state owned enterprises (Read)
October 2009: Asia Paper: China's biofuel policies (Read)
September 2009: Op-ed in European Voice: Live begins at 60 (Read)


Chinese law: Contemporary Chinese law is maturing slowly. Already today, in western-Chinese business negotiations, more and more Chinese businesses require Chinese law as the applicable law and the jurisdiction of Chinese courts in case of legal disputes. This forces western lawyers to specialise in Chinese law or cooperate with Chinese law firms. BICCS conducts research on the Chinese law system and various domains of Chinese law that may be of importance to the business community. 

May 2010: Article in JOURNAL OF INTERNATIONAL TRADE LAW & REGULATION: Pragmatism Rules Legal Foundation of China and European Union Relations (Read)

August 2010: Chapter in BOOK: PROSPECTS AND CHALLENGES FOR EU-CHINA RELATIONS IN THE 21ST CENTURY: THE PARTNERSHIP AND COOPERATION AGREEMENT: The Current Legal Foundation and Prospective Legal Framework of the PCA  (Read)