Douglas H. Paal

Vice President for Studies
Paal previously served as vice chairman of JPMorgan Chase International and as unofficial U.S. representative to Taiwan as director of the American Institute in Taiwan.


PhD, History and East Asian Languages, Harvard University
AM, AB, Chinese Studies and Asian History, Brown University 


Chinese; Japanese


Douglas H. Paal is vice president for studies at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. He previously served as vice chairman of JPMorgan Chase International (2006–2008) and was an unofficial U.S. representative to Taiwan as director of the American Institute in Taiwan (2002–2006). He was on the National Security Council staffs of Presidents Reagan and George H. W. Bush between 1986 and 1993 as director of Asian Affairs and then as senior director and special assistant to the president.

Paal held positions in the policy planning staff at the State Department, as a senior analyst for the CIA, and at U.S. embassies in Singapore and Beijing. He has spoken and published frequently on Asian affairs and national security issues.

  • Op-Ed China Daily January 21, 2016
    Maintaining Peace Across Taiwan Strait Can Benefit All

    The elections in Taiwan have the potential to lead to strains between the United States, Chinese mainland, and Taiwan for the first time in over seven years.

  • Op-Ed Diplomat December 29, 2015 Русский 中文
    China, the U.S., and the Coming Taiwan Transition

    Both China’s counterbalance to the Obama administration’s pivot to Asia and Taiwan’s upcoming elections have important implications for U.S. foreign policy.

  • Op-Ed Guancha November 4, 2015 中文
    Taiwan and Mainland Leaders Meet for First Time

    The first-ever meeting between the leaders of Taiwan and mainland China is evidently intended to reinforce the trends toward peace and development across the Taiwan Strait.

  • Op-Ed Strategic Review November 1, 2015 中文
    China’s Counterbalance to the American Rebalance

    After twenty years of the unipolar moment for America in sailing alone in the Asia-Pacific region, competition is returning and America needs to adjust to meet it.

  • Op-Ed China Daily September 14, 2015 中文
    China, United States Need to Deal with Vital Issues First

    Instead of focusing on Chinese activities in the South China Sea, cyberspace, and the currency markets during the upcoming state visit of President Xi Jinping to the United States, the leaders should discuss the health of the global economy.

  • Op-Ed National Interest June 18, 2015 中文
    Why Congress Must Pass the TPP

    If America is to save its leading role in Asian politics, diplomacy, and security, it has to modernize the economic underpinnings of that role or suffer marginalization.

  • Article June 11, 2015 中文
    Why Hong Kong’s Challenges Matter

    In Hong Kong, a seemingly irresistible force—the expectation of democratic representation—appears to have met an immovable object.

  • Year in Crisis December 10, 2014 Русский 中文
    The World in 2015

    Our take on the year ahead.

  • Op-Ed China U.S. Focus November 14, 2014
    Xi-Obama Meeting: U.S.-China Relations Off to a More Promising Start

    After more than a year of increasingly scratchy relations between the United States and China, Presidents Barack Obama and Xi Jinping managed to strike a markedly improved tone and announce some accomplishments at the Asia Pacific Economic Forum meeting in Beijing.

  • Q&A November 6, 2014 中文
    Obama Is Back in Asia

    With fears mounting that Washington has lost focus on Asia, Obama’s summit-filled trip to the region is an opportunity to reconnect with leaders and chart a clear course.

  • Radio Sputnik January 20, 2016
    Reforms in China Are More Often Articulated Than Actually Brought Into Reality

    China has announced sweeping changes to its military, but there are many challenges ahead regarding the implementation of these reforms.

  • NHK World November 4, 2015
    On the China-Taiwan Summit

    The upcoming summit between China and Taiwan could negatively affect Taiwan’s governing Kuomintang, or Nationalist Party, in next year’s presidential election.

  • CCTV September 27, 2015
    On President Xi’s U.S. Visit

    During his visit to the United States, President Xi conveyed to Chinese audiences that he could handle China’s most important bilateral relationship and reassured U.S. counterparts that Beijing understands contentious issues and will not ignore them.

  • CNBC September 22, 2015
    Will Xi’s State Visit Change U.S.-China Ties?

    What can the global community expect ahead of Chinese President Xi Jinping’s state visit to the United States?

  • NPR’s All Things Considered June 23, 2015
    U.S., China Face Tensions at the 7th Strategic and Economic Dialogue

    Xi Jinping’s upcoming summit visit to the United States in September will be on the minds of political figures throughout the Strategic and Economic Dialogue.

  • CCTV America December 5, 2014
    On the Zhou Yongkang Arrest

    It remains to be seen what Zhou’s arrest means for China’s anti-corruption campaign.

  • Russia Today November 15, 2014
    CrossTalk: World Without West

    As the world pivots to Asia, China has its own plans for this vast region.

  • RT’s Worlds Apart July 10, 2014
    Pivot Off-Balance?

    The U.S. rebalance toward East Asia is an effective strategy to unite diplomacy, economics and trade, and security in a critical and fast-growing region of the world.

  • CCTV America May 16, 2014
    Impact of the U.S. Pivot on the Asia Pacific Region

    The Obama administration’s pivot to Asia has not emboldened America’s regional partners, nor has U.S. reluctance to directly intervene in territorial disputes signaled waning support for U.S. allies.

  • CCTV America March 10, 2014
    Upcoming Highlights for the NPC

    The driving motivation behind the decision by the National People’s Congress to set the growth target at 7.5 percent is their desire to guarantee full employment.

  • U.S.-Japan Alliance
    February 10, 2016 Washington, DC
    Science and Technology Diplomacy and the U.S.-Japan Alliance

    A diverse group of specialists from Japan and the United States discuss the role of science and technology in twenty-first century diplomacy.

  • Taiwan Election
    February 8, 2016 Washington, DC
    Rescheduled: Dissecting Taiwan’s 2016 Election Results

    The domestic implications of Taiwan’s legislative and presidential elections will be important for the region, as China’s slowing economy and Taiwan’s growing resistance to mainland influence continue to play out.

    October 30, 2015 Washington, DC 中文
    Japan and U.S. Perspectives on Southeast Asia Development

    Seventy years after World War II, Southeast Asia stands at a crossroads amid multilateral trade negotiations, economic integration initiatives, political turmoil, and the establishment of new development institutions and regional governance frameworks.

  • October 27, 2015 Washington, DC 中文
    China’s Economic Rebalance

    Though China’s economy is rebalancing, some experts argue that Beijing waited too long to begin adjustments; debt levels are high and the economy still requires an unsustainably fast growth in credit to maintain high levels of economic activity.

  • September 9, 2015 Washington, DC 中文
    The Future of U.S.–South Korea Relations

    The U.S.–South Korea relationship is one of enduring friendship and mutual respect, but is nonetheless challenged by events, especially those involving North Korea.

  • July 15, 2015 Washington, DC 中文
    The Future of the U.S.-Korea Alliance and Northeast Asia

    The U.S.-ROK relationship has evolved from a strategic alliance designed to deter aggression from North Korea into a “comprehensive strategic alliance,” expanding well beyond the security realm. But this broader vision of the alliance is still in development.

  • March 24, 2015 Washington, DC 中文
    Taiwan’s Economic Role in the Asia-Pacific

    Taiwan’s economy is at the forefront of the IT revolution, plays an important role in the global supply chain, and partners successfully with American firms. It is actively extending its economic role in the Asia-Pacific to participate in regional economic integration.

  • February 27, 2015 Washington, DC 中文
    Wendy Sherman on Northeast Asia

    Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Wendy Sherman spoke about how the United States has worked with partners and allies to build a peaceful and prosperous post-war order in Northeast Asia, and the future of U.S. policy in the region.

  • December 5, 2014 Washington, DC 中文
    Decoding Taiwan’s “Nine-In-One” Election Results

    As Taiwan gears up for its regional “nine-in-one” elections, which will select candidates for a slew of municipal and local offices, many campaigns have focused on local issues. However, interested observers will endeavor to draw larger implications for the 2016 presidential and legislative elections.

  • October 23, 2014 Beijing
    Forging Cooperative U.S.-China Relations in an Increasingly Complex International Environment

    China and the United States should work closely together to develop comprehensive bilateral solutions to twenty-first century governance challenges.

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