Anthony Saich

Daewoo Professor of International Affairs


Anthony Saich (托尼·赛奇) is the director of the Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation and Daewoo Professor of International Affairs, teaching courses on comparative political institutions, democratic governance, and transitional economies with a focus on China. In his capacity as Ash Center Director, Saich also serves as the director of the Rajawali Foundation Institute for Asia and the faculty chair of the China Programs, the Asia Energy Leaders Program and the Leadership Transformation in Indonesia Program, which provide training programs for national and local Chinese and Indonesian officials.

Saich first visited China as a student in 1976 and continues to visit each year. Currently, he is a guest professor at the School of Public Policy and Management at Tsinghua University, China. He also advises a wide range of government, private, and nonprofit organizations on work in China and elsewhere in Asia.

Saich is a trustee member of the National Committee on US-China Relations (2014-), AMC Entertainment Inc., the chair of the China Medical Board, and International Bridges to Justice. He is also the US Secretary-General of the China United States Strategic Philanthropy. He sits on the executive committees of the Harvard University Council on Asia Studies, South Asia Initiative and the Asia Center. He serves as the Harvard representative of the Kennedy Memorial Trust and previously was the representative for the Ford Foundation’s China Office from 1994 to 1999. Prior to this, he was director of the Sinological Institute at Leiden University in the Netherlands.

His current research focuses on politics and governance in post-Mao China, China’s urbanization and rural-urban inequality in China; and the interplay between state and society in Asia and the respective roles they play in the provision of public goods and services at the local level. His most recent books include Governance and Politics of China (Fourth Edition, 2015); Chinese Village, Global Market (2012); Providing Public Goods in Transitional China (2008); Revolutionary Discourse in Mao’s Republic (with David Apter, 1998); The Rise to Power of the Chinese Communist Party (1996); and China’s Science Policy in the 80s (1989); He has edited books on Political Governance in China, 2015, Philanthropy for Health in China (with Jennifer Ryan and Lincoln Chen, 2014), China’s urbanization (with Shahid Yusuf, 2008), HIV/AIDS (with Joan Kaufman and Arthur Kleinman, 2006), and the Reform of China’s Financial Sector ( with Yasheng Huang and Edward Steinfeld., 2005).

He holds a Ph.D. from the Faculty of Letters, University of Leiden, the Netherlands. He received his master’s degree in politics with special reference to China from the School of Oriental and African Studies, London University, and his bachelor’s degree in politics and geography from the University of Newcastle, UK. Away from the office, he enjoys time with his two children, movies, and soccer.

Selected Publications

Books and Monographs

  • From Rebel to Ruler. 100 Years of the Chinese Communist Party. Harvard University Belnap Press, 2021, pp. 540.
  • Finding Allies and Making Revolution. The Early Years of the Chinese Communist Party. Brill, 2020, pp. 224.
  • State-Society Relations in the People’s Republic of China Post-1949. Brill, May, 2016.
  • The Governance and Politics of China. Palgrave, 2015, 434 pp, fourth fully revised edition, 2011, 428 pp, third edition. Second edition, 2004, 383 pp. First edition, 2001, 350 pp
  • Chinese Village, Global Market: New Collectives and Rural Development. Palgrave, 2012, 215pp. With Biliang Hu. 
  • Rajawali Foundation Institute for Asia, 2010. 110 pp.; Indonesian translation Indonesia Menentukan Nasib. Kompas Gramedia Group, 2010
  • Providing Public Goods in Transitional China. Palgrave, 2008, 236 pp.
  • The Rise to Power of the Chinese Communist Party. M. E. Sharpe, 1996, 1431 pp. With a contribution by Benjamin Yang.
  • Revolutionary Discourse in Mao’s Republic. Harvard University Press, 1994, 403 pp. With David E. Apter.
  • AIDS and Social Policy in China. Asia Center, Harvard University 2006, 267 pp. Editor with J. Kaufman and A. Kleinman. 
  • Financial Sector Reform in China. Asia Center, Harvard University, 2005, 250 pp. Edited volume with Yasheng Huang and Edward Steinfeld.
  • New Perspectives on State Socialism in China. M. E. Sharpe, 1997, pp.407. Edited with Timothy C. Cheek.
  • The Bloodshed of the Peking-Hankou Workers. Translation of the book by Luo Zhanglong with an introductory essay. M. E. Sharpe, in press. 1992.
  • The Origins of the First United Front in China: The Role of Sneevliet (Alias Maring). E. J. Brill, 1991. Two volumes, 941 pp.
  • Communist and PostCommunist Political Systems. An Introduction. Macmillan Press, 1990. 357 pp. American edition St.Martin’s Press. With Stephen White, John Gardner and George Schöpflin.
  • China’s Science Policy in the 80s. University of Manchester Press, 1989. 186 pp. American edition, Humanities Press.
  • Henk Sneevliet: een biographie politique. Paris: La Breche, 1988. 180 pp. With F. Tichelman and W. Bot. 
  • Wetenschaps- en Technologiebeleid in de Volksrepubliek China en De Nederlands-Chinese Wetenschappelijke Samenwerking (Science and Technology Policy in the People’s Republic of China and Dutch-Chinese Scientific Cooperation). Report prepared for the Dutch Ministry of Education and Sciences, 1986. 326 pp. 
  • China: Politics and Government. Macmillan Press: Basingstoke, 1981, reprinted 1985 and 1987. 265 pp. + xiii. American Edition, St. Martin’s Press.
  • Chinese Local Newspapers at S.O.A.S. Contemporary China Institute Research Notes and Studies Series: London, 1979. 83 pp. + iii. With D. S. G. Goodman.
  • Political Governance in China, Edward Elgar Publishing. 2015. 768 pp. Editor. 
  • Philanthropy for Health in China. Indiana University Press. 2014, 302pp. Edited with Jennifer Ryan and Lincoln C. Chen. 
  • China Urbanizes: Consequences, Strategies, and Policies. World Bank Publications. 2008, 213 pp. Editor with Shahid Yusuf.
  • Editor with Nancy Hearst of Li Rui’s An Initial Study of Mao Zedong’s Erroneous “Left” Thinking in his later Years in Chinese Law and Government, July-August 1996, pp. 1-88 and Lessons from the Lushan Plenum in Chinese Law and Government, September-October 1996, pp. 1-96. 
  • New Perspectives on the Chinese Communist Revolution. M. E. Sharpe, 1995, 414 pp. Editor with Hans van de Ven. 7 
  • China’s Modernisation.Westernisation and Acculturation. Steiner, 1993. Editor with Kurt Werner Radtke, 196 pp. 
  • The Reform Decade in China: From Hope to Dismay. Kegan Paul International, 1992. 239 pp. Ed itor with Marta Dassu. Edizione Associati has published an Italian translation of this book. 
  • Editor with Timothy Cheek of A Guide to Material on the Chinese Communist Movement (Zhang Zhuhong’s Historiography of China’s Modern Revolutionary History). Published in China’s Studies in History, summer 1990 and spring 1991, pp.1-94 and 1-87 respectively and Chinese Sociology and Anthropology, spring-summer 1990, pp.1-158. 
  • The Chinese People’s Movement. Perspectives on Spring 1989.M. E. Sharpe, 1990. 207 pp. Editor. 
  • Hemelse Vrede. De Lente van Peking (Heavenly Peace. The Beijing Spring). Balans, 1989. 148 pp. With Vincent Mentzel and Frenk van der Linden.

Recent Articles and Chapters

  • Cunningham, Edward, Anthony Saich & Jesse Turiel. “Understanding CCP Resilience: Surveying Chinese Public Opinion Through Time” Ash Center Democratic Governance and Innovation. July 2020. 
  • Turiel, Jesse, Edward Cunningham & Anthony Saich. “To Serve the People: Income, Region, and Citizen Attitudes towards Governance in China (2003-2016)” The China Quarterly. December 2019, 906-35. 
  • “What Explains the Resilience of Chinese Communist Party Rule?” The Brown Journal of World Affairs. Fall/Winter 2020, 105-08. 
  • “The 1920s. A Dutchman’s Fantasy. Henricus Sneevliet’s United Front for the Chinese Communist Party” The Chinese Communist Party: A Century in Ten Lives, Eds. Timothy Cheek, Klaus Mülhahn, and Hans J. van de Ven, Cambridge University Press, 2021, pp. 9- 28. 
  • “Class Definition and Policy Implementation” Class and the Chinese Communist Party, 1921-1978. Revolution and Social Change, Mark Blecher, David S.G. Goodman, Yingjie Guo, Jean-Louis Rocca, and Tony Saich, Routledge Press, 2021, 209-21. 
  • Saich, Anthony. “How Do China’s New Rich Give Back?” The China Questions: Critical Insights into a Rising Power, Ed. Jennifer Rudolph and Michael Szonyi, Harvard University Press. 2018, 148-154. 
  • Saich, Anthony & Paula D. Johnson. “Values and Vision: Perspectives on Philanthropy in 21st Century China” Ash Center Policy Briefs, June 2017. 
  •  Saich, Anthony. “What Does General Secretary Xi Jinping Dream About?.” Ash Center Occasional Papers Series, August 2017. 
  • Saich, Anthony. “The politics of welfare policy: towards social citizenship?” Handbook of Welfare in China. Ed. Beatriz Carrillo, Johanna Hood and Paul Kadetz. Edward Edgar Publishing, 2017, 81-97. 
  • Saich, Anthony. “Controlling Political Communication and Civil Society under Xi Jinping.” Merics Papers on China No. 1 (June 2016): 22-25. 
  • Saich, Anthony. “How China’s Citizens View the Quality of Governance under Xi Jinping.” Journal of Chinese Governance 1.1 (March 2016): 1-20. 
  • Saich, Anthony. “The National People’s Congress: Functions and Membership.” Ash Center Policy Brief, November 2015 
  • Saich, Tony. “China’s Domestic Governing Capacity: Prospects and Challenges.” Assessing China’s Power, Ed. Jae Ho Chung. Palgrave, Oct 2015, 41-61 
  • Saich, Anthony. “Reflections on a Survey of Global Perceptions of International Leaders and World Powers.” Ash Center Occasional Papers Series, December 2014. 
  • Saich, Anthony. “Collection under Uncertainty: The Creation of the Chinese People’s Movement Archive.” A Usable Collection, Essays in honour of Jaap Kloosterman on collecting social history. Ed. Aad Blok, Jan Lucassen and Huub Sanders. Amsterdam University Press, 2014, 418-425. 
  • Saich, Tony. Lincoln C. Chen, Jennifer Ryan. “Introduction: Philanthropy for Health in China: Distinctive Roots and Future Prospects.” Philanthropy for Health in China, Ed. Jennifer Ryan, Lincoln C. Chen & Tony Saich. Indiana University Press. 2014, 1-15. 
  • Saich, Anthony. “Reforming China’s Monopolies.” Ash Center Occasional Papers Series, August 2013. 
  • Hearst, Nancy, Tony Saich. ‘The Chinese Communist Party to 1949.” Oxford Bibliographies in Chinese Studies. Ed. Tim Wright. (Forthcoming, Spring 2013). 
  • Saich, Tony. “Political Representation in China.” Routledge Handbook of China’s Governance and Domestic Politics, Ed. Christopher Ogden. January, 2013. 
  • Saich, Tony. “The Quality of Governance in China: The Citizens’ View.” CDDR Working Papers, (Center on Democracy, Development, and The Rule of Law, Stanford). No. 129 April 2013 
  • Saich, Tony. “China, the USA and Asia’s Future.” Paper prepared for Harvard Kennedy School Mossavar-Rahmani Center for Business & Government Kansai Keizai Doyukai Program Annual Conference. November, 2012. 
  • Saich, Tony. “Chinese Communist Party.” The Oxford Companion to Comparative Politics (Volume 1). Ed. Joel Krieger. Oxford University Press. 2012, 170-172.  
  • Saich, Tony. “Tiananmen Square.” The Oxford Companion to Comparative Politics. (Volume 2). Ed. Joel Krieger. Oxford University Press. 2012, 442-443.


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