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Great Decisions Series continues with focus on China

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The World Affairs Council's "Great Decisions" series continues on February 5 with presentations on China.
NPR's Will Dobson at WACWM's "Great Decisions"

NPR's Will Dobson at WACWM's "Great Decisions"

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World Affairs Council "Great Decisions" Series

Monday presentations from January 29 through March 26, at noon at Calvin College and at 6 p.m. at Aquinas College. Topics are suggested by the Foreign Policy Association of America. The World Affairs Council of Western Michigan has been nationally recognized for its annual series.


After a fascinating start, the World Affairs Council of Western Michigan (WACWM) continues its eight-part series on international issues with presentations on China.

On Monday, February 5, Dr. Badrianth Rao of Kettering University will speak on "China in the World: Conundrums of a Socialist Market Economy." Dr. Rao will present at Calvin College from 12 noon to 1 p.m. and repeat his talk at Aquinas College from 6 to 7:15 p.m. Generous q-and-a times are planned at both venues.

"China has ambitious plans for global leadership with its 'One Belt, One Road' initiative," said Rao. "Yet the country faces major challenges--the economy, the environment, energy, governance and corruption. How will China respond to these challenges and how will it impact the global community?"

Dr. Rao, an associate professor of sociology and Asian studies, has taught in five countries: India, China, the U.S., Spain and Canada. In addition, he has lectured in 33 different Chinese universities, and is currently a guest professor at the School of Law in the Harbin Institute of Technology in Harbin, China. 

He continues the "Great Decisions" series that began with NPR's Will Dobson on Monday, January 29. Speaking about how authoritarian countries have become more savvy in communications, Dobson noted, "Dicataors have figured out that getting 99% of the vote is a little suspcious, so now they get a little less to look more authentic. 70% is the new 99%."

In response to a question about the concerns about the U.S. becoming more authoritarian, Dobson said, "Paricipation is the key. That's fundamental. It's hard to be an effective democracy without an informed citizenry."

The series is held on Mondays through March 26 and a list of speakers and topics is available at The Monday noon presentation is in the Recital Hall of the Covenant Fine Arts Center at Calvin College, and the 6 p.m. presentation is in the Performing Arts Center at Aquinas College.

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