How Chinese Soft Power Works



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Background. Soft power offers states a unique way to advance their interests internationally using cooperation and attraction. Although the term "soft power" only began to enter academic discourse and circulate among practitioners after being coined by political scientist Joseph S. Nye in his 1990 book “Bound To Lead”, the concept behind it is not new; changing conditions in international relations only made it more imperative and relevant to expand on Nye’s initial conceptualization and further study this other dimension of power. Conclusion. Chinese soft power operates by generating attraction and securing cooperation through 5 mediums: Education, Culture, Media & Information, Foreign Assistance, and Foreign Direct investment. Although China does not employ soft power to the exclusion of hard power, it has been paying more attention to soft power and investing extensively in this dimension of power because of the realization that Chinese hard power remains relatively weak and that winning hearts and minds internationally is essential to China’s global superpower aspirations.