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FSI's research on the origins, character and consequences of government institutions spans continents and academic disciplines. The institute’s senior fellows and their colleagues across Stanford examine the principles of public administration and implementation. Their work focuses on how maternal health care is delivered in rural China, how public action can create wealth and eliminate poverty, and why U.S. immigration reform keeps stalling. Looking more broadly at these issues, FSI’s Governance Project works on measuring the quality of governance and assessing a country’s ability to deliver public services.

FSI’s work includes comparative studies of how institutions help resolve policy and societal issues. Scholars aim to clearly define and make sense of the rule of law, examining how it is invoked and applied around the world. One project explores how authoritarian and democratic regimes can encourage or suppress economic development. Meanwhile, the European Governance project looks at governance issues on a single continent.

FSI researchers also investigate government services – trying to understand and measure how they work, whom they serve and how good they are. They assess energy services aimed at helping the poorest people around the world and explore public opinion on torture policies. The Children in Crisis project addresses how child health interventions interact with political reform. Specific research on governance, organizations and security capitalizes on FSI's longstanding interests and looks at how governance and organizational issues affect a nation’s ability to address security and international cooperation.

Scholarly Publications

Uneasy Partnerships: China’s Engagement with Japan, the Koreas, and Russia in the Era of Reform

April 2017

Uneasy Partnerships presents the analysis and insights of practitioners and scholars who have shaped and examined China's interactions with key Northeast Asian partners.

Divergent Memories: Opinion Leaders and the Asia-Pacific War

July 2016

No nation is free from the charge that it has a less-than-complete view of the past.

Rebellion and Repression in China, 1966–1971

June 2015

In the first five years after the onset of the Chinese Cultural Revolution, one of the largest political upheavals of the twentieth century paralyzed a highly centralized party state, leading to a...

Other Publications

Is the War Danger in Korea Real?

August 2017

President Donald Trump's ominous threat to unleash “fire and fury” on North Korea succeeded at least in garnering the attention of not only Kim Jong Un but the globe.

The North Korean Missile Test Pushes Xi and Putin Closer

July 2017

The most dangerous impact of North Korea’s long-range missile test this past week may not have been the one in the Sea of Japan, felt in Washington, Seoul and Tokyo.

Celebrating the First 10 Years of the China Program

June 2017

The China Program at the Shorenstein Asia-Pacific Research Center marks its 10th anniverary in 2017.


Call for applications: 2018-19 Postdoctoral fellowship in contemporary Asia

September 2017

The Shorenstein Asia-Pacific Research Center (APARC) at Stanford is now accepting applications for the Shorenstein Postdoctoral Fellowship in Contemporary Asia, an opportunity made available to two...

China Program's 10th Anniversary Conference: Panelists exchange views on China's future

June 2017

Countries like the Asian “tigers” that experienced rapid economic growth inevitably encounter slowdowns that signal a fundamental shift in their economies.

US Pacific Command hosts Stanford group for Asia security dialogue

May 2017

The mission of the Department of Defense (DoD) in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region recently became a bit clearer for 22 faculty and military fellows from Stanford, the Massachusetts Institute of...


AIIB After Two Years

March 22, 2018

The Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) commenced operations on January 16, 2016. The Bank has approved 24 projects totaling US$4.26 billion to date.

Farmland and Fraud: Land Rents and Vote Buying in China’s Village Elections

January 9, 2018

While much of the existing literature examines vote buying in the context of party systems, including both competitive and hegemonic party systems, this talk, based on a study coauthored by...

Beneath the China Boom: Citizenship, Welfare, and the Making of a Rural Land Market

December 21, 2017

China has pivoted away from export-oriented development towards a strategy of domestic urban and infrastructural construction.  This pivot is especially visible in rural China, where migrant...


China: Going Global

Beijing’s new Silk Road initiative links old trade corridors from Asia to Africa and Europe.

China's New Normal

China’s leaders now acknowledge the reality of much slower growth, and refer to it as the “new normal”.  But what does this mean, and what will be the consequences?  Exports have slowed, but can...

China’s Conflicting Policy Directions

A climate of uncertainty marks the Xi administration’s second year in power.


15th Annual Shorenstein Journalism Award Keynote Speech by Ian Johnson: Religion After Mao

May 2017

Video and transcript from "15th Annual Shorenstein Journalism Award Keynote Speech by Ian Johnson: Religion after Mao" on May 1, 2017, with keynote speaker and Shorenstein Journalism Award winner Ian Johnson.Following a century of violent anti...

The South China Sea: What is to be Done?

April 2017

Audio and transcript from the Shorenstein APARC China Program seminar, "The South China Sea: What is to be Done?", on March 8, 2017, with Donald K.

The United Nations at 70: A Conversation with Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

June 2015

Video from the event "The United Nations at 70: A Conversation with Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon" moderated by Ambassador Kathleen Stephens. The event was co-sponsored by the Walter H.


Karen Eggleston Senior Fellow
Karl Eikenberry Karl Eikenberry Professor of the Practice Fellow, S-APARC, Core faculty, CISAC, Affiliate, CDDRL, Affiliate, TEC
Jean C. Oi Senior Fellow Professor, Political Science
Xueguang Zhou Senior Fellow Professor, Sociology
Thomas Fingar Fellow