The Promise and Perils of Chinese Democracy: Hong Kong and Taiwan (Dec. 11, 2020)

The BU Center for the Study of Asia invites you to join this important online discussion on

Friday, December 11, 2020
9:00-10:30 am (Boston Time)


About the Speakers:

David Zweig ( , Ph.D., University of Michigan, 1983) is Professor Emeritus, Division of Social Science, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, and Director, Transnational China Consulting Limited.  He is an Adjunct Professor, School of Social Sciences and Humanities, National University of Defence Technology, Changsha, Hunan, and Vice-President of the Center on China’s Globalization (Beijing). He was a Postdoctoral Fellow at Harvard University in 1984-86. He has lived in Hong Kong since 1996 and was a full-time faculty member at HKUST for 25 years.
Dr. Zweig studied in Beijing in 1974-1976 and did field research in rural China in 1980-1981 and 1986. In 1991-92 and 1997, he did field research on China’s “opening to the outside world.” Since 1991, he has surveyed and interviewed academics, scientists, entrepreneurs, and employees who returned from studying abroad, and  Mainland-born Chinese working overseas. In June 2012, he gave Li Yuanchao, then head of the Organization Department of the Chinese Communist Party, a critical evaluation of the CCP’s Thousand Talents Plan.

He is the author or editor of ten books, including Internationalizing China: domestic interests and global linkages (2002) and Sino-U.S. Energy Triangles: Resource Diplomacy under Hegemony (2016). “’The best are yet to come’: State programs, domestic resistance and reverse migration of high-level talent to China,” appeared in the Journal of Contemporary China (Sept. 2020), and in May 2020, his report, America Challenges China’s National Talent Programs (with Kang Siqin), was published by the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, DC. He is a Contributing Writer to the South China Morning Post.

Zweig’s research interests include Chinese Politics and Foreign Policy, China’s Resource Diplomacy, China’s talent programs and reverse migration, Sino-American Relations, East Asian International Relations, and Hong Kong-Mainland relations. His representative publications include:

  • Internationalizing China: Domestic Interests and Global Linkages(Cornell Series in Political Economy, Cornell University Press, 2002).
  • Sino-U.S. Energy Triangles: Resource Diplomacy under Hegemony,David Zweig and Hao Yufan, eds. (Routledge: London, 2015, published in paper in 2016).
  • Freeing China’s Farmers: Rural Restructuring in the Reform Era(M.E. Sharpe, 1997).
  • China’s Brain Drain to the United States, with Chen Changgui (Berkeley: China Research Monograph Series, 1995; republished by Routledge in 2013).
  • Agrarian Radicalism in China, 1968‑1981(Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1989).
  • “’The best are yet to come’: State programs, domestic resistance and reverse migration of high-level talent to China,” with Siqin Kang and Henry Wang Huiyao,Journal of Contemporary China, September 2020.
  • “America Challenges China’s National Talent Programs,” with Siqin Kang, Center for Strategic and International Studies, No. 4, May 2020.
  •  “Familiarity Breeds Contempt: China’s growing soft power deficit in Hong Kong,” in Kingsley Edney, Stanley Rosen, and Ying Zhou,Soft Power with Chinese Characteristics: China’s Campaign for Hearts and Minds(Routledge: 2020), pp. 241-261.
  • “A Photo Essay of a Failed Reform: Beida, Tiananmen Square and the Defeat of Deng Xiaoping in 1975-76,”China Perspectives, No. 1 (2016): 5-28.
  • “Overseas Students, Returnees and the Diffusion of International Norms into Post-Mao China,” with Feng Yang,International Studies Review, 16 (Fall 2014): 252-63.
  • “Can China Bring Back the Best? The Communist Party Organizes China’s Search for Talent,” with Huiyao Wang,The China Quarterly, no. 215 (September 2103): 590-615.
  • “Educating a New Generation of Students: Transferring Knowledge and Norms from Hong Kong to the Mainland,” with Liu Mei-hua,China Perspectives, 1 (2013): 73-86.
  • “Returnee Entrepreneurs: impact on China’s globalization process,” with Wang Huiyao and Lin Xiaohua,Journal of Contemporary China, 20: 70 (2011): 413-431.
  • “Images of the World: Studying Abroad and Chinese Attitudes towards International Affairs,” with Han Donglin,The China Quarterly, No. 202 (June 2010): 290-306.
  • “Redefining the ‘Brain Drain’: China’s Diaspora Option,” with Chung Siu-Fung and Han Donglin,Science, Technology and Society, Vol.13, No.1 (2008): 1-33.
  • “Rewards of Technology: Explaining China’s Reverse Migration,” (with Chung Siu Fung, and Wilfried Vanhonacker),Journal of International Migration and Integration,Volume 7, No. 4 (Fall 2006): 449-71.
  • “Learning to Compete: China’s Efforts to Encourage a Reverse Brain Drain,”International Labour Review, vol. 145, nos. 1-2 (2006): 65-90.
  • “China’s Global Hunt for Energy,”Foreign Affairs(with Bi Jianhai), Vol. 84, No. 5 (September-October 2005): 25-38.

Margaret Lewis ( (BA Columbia University, JD New York University School of Law) focuses on law in China and Taiwan with an emphasis on criminal justice and human rights.

Maggie Lewis has been a Fulbright Senior Scholar at National Taiwan University, a visiting professor at Academia Sinica, a Public Intellectuals Program Fellow with the National Committee on United States-China Relations, and a delegate to the US-Japan Foundation’s US-Japan Leadership Program. She is a Member of the Council on Foreign Relations. Her publications have appeared in a number of academic journals including the Columbia Journal of Transnational Law, NYU Journal of International Law and Politics, Vanderbilt Journal of Transnational Law, and Virginia Journal of International Law. She also co-authored the book Challenge to China: How Taiwan Abolished its Version of Re-Education Through Labor with Jerome A. Cohen.

Professor Lewis has participated in the State Department’s Legal Experts Dialogue with China, has testified before the Congressional-Executive Commission on China, and is a consultant to the Ford Foundation.

Before joining Seton Hall, Maggie Lewis served as a Senior Research Fellow at NYU School of Law’s U.S.-Asia Law Institute where she worked on criminal justice reforms in China. Following graduation from law school, she worked as an associate at the law firm of Cleary, Gottlieb, Steen & Hamilton in New York City. She then served as a law clerk for the Honorable M. Margaret McKeown of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in San Diego. After clerking, she returned to NYU School of Law and was awarded a Furman Fellowship.

Professor Lewis received her J.D., magna cum laude, from NYU School of Law, where she was inducted into the Order of the Coif and was a member of Law Review. She received her B.A., summa cum laude, from Columbia University and also studied at the Hopkins-Nanjing Center for Chinese and American Studies in Nanjing, China.



Criminalizing China,111 J. Crim. L. & Criminology(forthcoming 2020)

Why China Should Unsign the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights,53 Vand. J. Transnat’l L. 131(2020)

Forging Taiwan’s Legal Identity,44 Brook. J. Int’l L.(2019)

Safeguarding the Boundaries of Right: Jerome A. Cohen’s Experience with Law in the People’s Republic of China,65 Am. J. Comp. L. 745(2018) (invited submission)

Human Rights and the U.S.-China Relationship,49 Geo. Wash. Int’l L. Rev. 471(2017)

When Foreign is Criminal,55 Va. J. Int’l L. 625(2015)

Criminal Law Pays: Penal Law’s Contribution to China’s Economic Development,47 Vand. J. Transnat’l L. 371(2014)

How Taiwan’s Constitutional Court Reined in Police Power: Lessons for the People’s Republic of China,37 Fordham Int’l L.J. 863(2014) (co-authored with Jerome A. Cohen)

Presuming Innocence, or Corruption, in China,50 Colum. J. Transnat’l L. 287(2012)

Controlling Abuse to Maintain Control: The Exclusionary Rule in China,43 N.Y.U. J. Int’l. L. & Pol. 629(2011) (awarded Jerome A. Cohen Prize for International Law and East Asia)

The Tension Between Leniency and Severity in China’s Death Penalty Debate,24 Colum. J. Asian L. 303(2011) (invited submission)

Taiwan’s New Adversarial System and the Overlooked Challenge of Efficiency-Driven Reforms,49 Va. J. Int’l L. 651(2009)

Note, An Analysis of State Responsibility for the Chinese-American Airplane Collision Incident,77 N. Y. U. L. Rev. 1404(2002)


Challenge to China: How Taiwan Abolished its Version of Re-Education Through Labor,2013: English version from Berkshire Publishing and NYU School of Law, U.S.-Asia Law Institute; Chinese version from Yuan Zhao Publishing, Taiwan(co-authored with Jerome A. Cohen) (2013)


Seeking Truthful Names: The External Implications of China’s Internal Ideology on Governance, in Law and the Party in Xi Jinping’s China: Ideology and Organization,Cambridge University Press(Rogier Creemers & Susan Trevaskes eds.) (forthcoming 2020)

Creative Contacts: Taiwan’s Quest for International Law Enforcement Cooperation, inChinese (Taiwan) Yearbook of International Law and Affairs(Ying-jeou Ma ed., Brill) (2019)

Freedom from Torture, inHandbook on Human Rights in China(Sarah Biddulph & Joshua Rosenzweig eds., Edward Elgar) (2019)

Who Shall Judge? Taiwan’s Exploration of Lay Participation in Criminal Trials, inTaiwan and International Human Rights: A Story of Transformation(William P. Alford, Jerome A. Cohen & Chang-fa Lo eds., Springer) (2019)

Constitutions Across the Strait, inInternational Engagement in China’s Human Rights(Chen Dingding & Titus Chen eds., Routledge) (2015)

Legal Systems in China, inHandbook of Chinese Criminology(Liqun Cao, et al. eds., Routledge) (2012)

The Enduring Importance of Police Repression: Laojiao, the Rule of Law and Taiwan’s Alternative Evolution, in The Impact of China’s 1989 Tiananmen Massacre,Jean-Philippe Béja, ed.,Routledge(with Jerome A. Cohen) (2010)