May 2017

The Robert Strauss Center for International Security and Law at the University of Texas at Austin and the McCain Institute for International Leadership at Arizona State University convened a workshop in November 2016 in Washington DC, where policy-makers (past and present), scholars, practitioners, and dissidents met to brainstorm and refine policy-relevant, concrete recommendations for more effectively advancing human rights in China. The result is this report which draws from the views and ideas of the workshop participants as well as other foreign policy experts. However, the report does not necessarily represent the individual views of the participants in that workshop or of the two sponsoring organizations.


The Robert Strauss Center for International Security and Law integrates expertise from across the University of Texas at Austin, as well as from the private and public sectors, in pursuit of practical solutions to emerging international challenges. The Robert Strauss Center’s Understanding China program features both a speaker series on campus at UT (focused on improving understanding of China’s evolving role in the international system) and a planned research-and-conference series examining China’s human rights record.


Guided by values that have animated the career of Senator John McCain and the McCain family for generations, the McCain Institute is a non-partisan do-tank dedicated to advancing character-driven global leadership based on security, economic opportunity,freedom and human dignity – in the United States and around the world. The Institute seeks to promote humanitarian action, human rights and democracy, and national security, and to embrace technology in producing better designs for educated decisions in national and international policy. The McCain Institute is committed to: sustaining America’s global leadership; upholding freedom, democracy and human rights as universal human values; supporting humanitarian goals; maintaining a strong, smart national defense; and serving causes greater than one’s self-interest.