Susan Shirk is a Senior Director of Albright Stonebridge Group, a global strategy firm, where she assists clients with issues related to East Asia. Dr. Shirk is director of the University of California system-wide Institute on Global Conflict and Cooperation and Ho Miu Lam Professor of China and Pacific Affairs in the School of International Relations and Pacific Studies at the University of California, San Diego.
From July 1997 to July 2000, Dr. Shirk served as Deputy Assistant Secretary in the Bureau of East Asia and Pacific Affairs, with responsibility for the People’s Republic of China, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Mongolia.
In this position Dr. Shirk planned and participated in meetings between the Chinese and American presidents and senior officials, and in negotiations on arms control, human rights and trade, including negotiations on China’s accession to the World Trade Organization.
In 1993, she founded and continues to lead the Northeast Asia Cooperation Dialogue (NEACD), an unofficial “track-two” forum for discussions of security issues among defense and foreign ministry officials and academics from the United States, Japan, China, Russia, North Korea and South Korea.
She has visited North Korea three times. In 2010, she co-chaired an IGCC-Asia Society task force that wrote the report, “North Korea Inside Out: The Case for Economic Engagement.” Dr. Shirk is a member of the Trilateral Commission and the Council on Foreign Relations, and an emeritus member of the Aspen Strategy Group.
She also served as a member of the U.S. Defense Policy Board, the Board of Governors of the East-West Center (Hawaii), the Board of Trustees of the U.S.-Japan Foundation, and the Board of Directors of the National Committee on United States-China Relations. From 2008-2009, Dr. Shirk served as the Arthur Ross Fellow at the Center on U.S.-China Relations at the Asia Society in New York City.
Dr. Shirk’s publications include: China: Fragile Superpower (2007); How China Opened Its Door: The Political Success of the PRC’s Foreign Trade and Investment Reforms (1994); The Political Logic of Economic Reform in China (1993); and Competitive Comrades: Career Incentives and Student Strategies in China (1982). Her edited book, Changing Media, Changing China, was published in 2011.
Dr. Shirk earned her B.A. in Political Science from Mount Holyoke College, an M.A. in Asian Studies from the University of California at Berkeley, and her Ph.D. in Political Science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.