I am a Senior Lecturer in the Strategic & Defence Studies Centre at The Australian National University, with particular expertise in Chinese foreign and security policy, China-Japan relations, and the economics-security nexus in the Asia-Pacific region. I am also a research fellow with the Australia-Japan Research Centre, a research associate with the ANU's Graduate Research and Development Network on Asian Security (GRADNAS), and I serve on the Editorial Board of the East Asia Forum.
I currently hold both a Westpac Research Fellowship and an Australian Research Council DECRA Fellowship to investigate China's role in shaping the international economic order. This research program consists of two interrelated projects: a historical project that will provide the first comprehensive account of China’s role in shaping the post-World War II international economic order, through the lens of the Bretton Woods and Bandung conferences, held between 1944 and 1955; and a contemporary project that will examine the economic ideas and strategies underpinning 21st century Chinese initiatives like the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) and the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). Recently discovered Chinese archival records indicate important parallels between the proposals China took to Bretton Woods and Bandung, and 21st century Chinese initiatives like the AIIB and BRI; my research will therefore help to uncover the historical origins of 21st century Chinese institutions and initiatives.
My book, China-Japan Relations after World War Two: Empire, Industry and War, 1949-1971 (Cambridge University Press, 2016), examines the post-WWII rebuilding of economic ties between the People’s Republic of China and Japan. Developing an innovative four-part conceptual framework for the role of ideas in shaping foreign policy, it explains how and why Japan became China’s most important economic partner in the aftermath of major war, and at a time when the two countries were still Cold War opponents. The book is based on hundreds of declassified documents from the Chinese Foreign Ministry Archive, gathered during extensive fieldwork in China between 2008 and 2012.
I received my D.Phil in International Relations from the University of Oxford, where I studied as a Rhodes Scholar. My doctoral thesis was awarded Oxford's 2013 Dasturzada Dr Jal Pavry Memorial Prize. I completed my M.Phil in Modern Chinese Studies at the University of Oxford, and B.A. Hons (First Class) in International Studies and B.Bus in International Business at the University of South Australia. I speak, read and write Chinese and Japanese, having undertaken intensive language study over a number of years, including at Peking University in China and Okayama University in Japan.