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China’s Public Diplomacy: Implications for Europe


Helly, D. 2015. China’s Public Diplomacy: Implications for Europe. (ECDPM Presentation).

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“EU-China cooperation is impressively expanding and deepening, especially in the field of research and innovation. But could this cooperation be culturally deeper?”

What does the rapid development of China’s public diplomacy mean for Europe? At a recent event ECDPM’s Damien Helly presented some key messages: 

  • Cultural relations are important – the EU should invest to become an enabling power, an interpreter and a ‘composer’. 
  • The EU should act as a block with an external cultural strategy and use subsidiarity in cultural relations beyond the traditional public diplomacy model. 
  • There should be continued investment in exchanges, scientific cooperation and co-working to compose new common spaces between EU and Chinese counterparts.
  • The EU should create a European Foundation for external cultural relations at arm’s length from the EU institutions and Member States. 

Damien’s presentation slides and the meeting report prepared by Madariaga, a College of Europe Foundation, can be found at the download buttons. 

More information on the event can be found here


– Ingrid d’Hooghe, Senior Research Associate, The Clingendael Institute

– Damien Helly, Deputy Head of programme Strengthening European External Action, European Centre for Development Policy Management (ECDPM)

– Ji Rong, Deputy Director, Press and Communication Section, Chinese Mission to the EU

– Walter Zampieri, Head of Unit, Culture policy and intercultural dialogue, DG Education and Culture, European Commission

The debate was moderated by Jan Melissen, Senior Research Fellow, The Clingendael Instituten and Professor of Diplomacy, University of Antwerp. 

Speakers’ bios 

This event was held on occasion of the launch of the book “China’s Public Diplomacy” (I. d’Hooghe, Brill Nijhoff, 2015).

This event was jointly organised with The Clingendael Institute


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European external affairsEU Inter-Institutional Relations in External ActionExternal Action in Global RegionsPresentationsBrazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS)CultureChinaEurope