C100 U.S.-China Perceptions Survey co-chairs Charlie Woo, Frank H. Wu, and Jeremy Wu participated in a live “Global Conversation on US-China Relations” with Sree Sreenivasan, Columbia Journalism School, on May 23. The webcast is an in-depth review of the survey methodology and findings.
Talk show host Tavis Smiley interviewed Charlie Woo, co-founder and CEO of Megatoys, on May 11. Smiley traveled to China twice with the Committee and was particularly interested in the survey finding that individuals who had visited the other country had more favorable views than those who had never been there. Woo said, “Interaction between the two peoples creates a better relationship. For those [Americans] who have visited China, their impression is pretty overwhelmingly more favorable, and for Chinese who come here, most have favorable opinions.”
The optimism and confidence of the Chinese compared to Americans is clear, said Woo. According to Woo, 60% of the Chinese public think China will overtake the U.S. economically, an opinion shared by the American public, 2/3 of whom believe that an emerging China is a global economic threat. However, said Woo, Chinese elites are more cautious about China’s future superpower status: “The more Chinese understand about the U.S., the more realistic they are about the situation.”
Woo and Frank Wu, chancellor and dean of University of California Hastings College of Law, spoke on Southern California Public Radio’s AirTalk immediately after the survey’s release on April 20, focusing on areas of mistrust between the two peoples. Wu described how the survey posed the same questions during the same time period in the U.S. and China, finding that “the recurring theme within the positive trend is suspicion.” On Chinese side, there is fear that U.S. is trying to keep China from being a global power, and, on the American side, a majority of the general public, business leaders and opinion leaders believe the U.S. should trust China “a little” or “not at all.” In spite of this, Woo, said, “We recognize from the survey that there is a general favorable impression of each country toward the other,” pointing out strong majorities of the general public (55% in the U.S. and 59% in China) have favorable views of the other country.
On July 14, Sinica’s Kaiser Kuo asked C100 Executive Director Angie Tang and Research Director Mercy Kuo about the most surprising findings in the 2012 survey. Download the full interview at Popup Chinese.