Skip to main content

Jessica Liao

Asst Professor

School of Public and International Affairs

Caldwell Hall NA


Jessica C. Liao is an assistant professor of political science and 2020-2021 Wilson China Fellow. Prior to NC State, she taught at George Washington University and was a visit fellow at Monash University, Kuala Lumpur campus. She received her PhD in international relations from the University of Southern California. Her research focuses on Chinese foreign policy and East Asian politics. Her current project is about China’s resource and infrastructure development in Southeast Asia.


  • China’s Energy and Infrastructure Development in Southeast Asia
  • China-ASEAN Relations under the Belt and Road Initiative
  • The competition between China and Japan in foreign aid and development assistance in Southeast Asia

Research Publications

Refereed articles

Jessica C. Liao & Saori N. Katada. ‘Institutions, Ideation, and Diffusion of Japan’s and China’s Overseas Infrastructure Promotion Policies,’ New Political Economy 02 Aug 2021,

“The Club-based Climate Regime and OECD Negotiations on Restricting Coal-fired Power Export Finance,” Global Policy, September 2020.

Book chapter

“Confronting China’s and the United States’ ASEAN Policies,” in ed. Agata Ziętek, Grzegorz Gil, ASEAN in a Changing World (New York: Peter Lang 2021).


‘China’s Green Mercantilism and Environmental Governance: A New Belt and Road to the Global South?’ The Wilson Center China Fellow 2020 Report. Washington DC, April 2021.


Developmental States and Business Activism: East Asia’s Trade Dispute Settlement (London: Palgrave Macmillan), November 2015.


“Geoeconomics, easy money, and political opportunism: the Perils under China and Japan’s high-Speed rail competition,” Contemporary Politics, September 2020 (coauthored with Saori N. Katada).

“China and Japan in pursuit of Infrastructure Development Leadership Competition or Convergence?” Global Governance 26(3), 2020: 449–472 (coauthored with Saori N. Katada)

“The nexus of security and economic hedging: Vietnam’s strategic response to Japan–China infrastructure financing competition,” The Pacific Review, April 23, 2019. (coauthored with Ngoc-Tram Dang).

“A Good Neighbor of Bad Governance? China’s Energy and Infrastructure Development in Southeast Asia,” Journal of Contemporary China, December 18, 2018.

“A Legacy of Subsidy Policies and Their Impact on China’s Use of the WTO Dispute Settlement Mechanism,” Asian Survey 53:6 (November/December 2013).

“China’s Response to the Global IPR Regime: Resistance or Compliance?” Issues & Studies, 42: 4 (Winter 2006).


“It Takes Three to Tango: The Japan-China Infrastructure Financing Competition in Vietnam,” Presented in Association of Asian Studies Annual Conference, Washington DC, March 25, 2018.

“What Washington Doesn’t Get about the One Belt One Road: The Case of Southeast Asia.” Presented in American Association for Chinese Studies Annual Conference, Columbia, South Carolina, October 22, 2017.

“China’s Infrastructure Aid and Investment in Southeast Asia: Ambitious or Over-Ambitious?”  Presented in Shanghai Institute of International Studies, Shanghai, China. November 21st, 2016.

Funded Research

Becoming an environmental sustainable developmental state? China’s Green BRI in Southeast Asia. The Wilson China Fellowship 2020-2021 $20,000 (current project)


M.A. China and Asian Pacific Studies National Sun Yat-Sun University, Taiwan 2006

Ph.D. Politics and International Relations The University of Southern California 2013

Area(s) of Expertise

Comparative politics, International political economy, East Asian politics, Chinese foreign policy, Japanese foreign policy, Regionalism