In 2015, Beijing released Jointly Building a Community with a Shared Future in Cyberspace, a white paper outlining the CCP’s vision for the future of the internet. The paper extended the concept of sovereignty to cyberspace, asserting that individual states have the right to decide what kind of content is acceptable within their borders, create their own standards for cybersecurity, and control access to the infrastructure of the internet.

In the eight years since then, the vision for the Community with a Shared Future has picked up steam outside of China, largely as the result of Beijing’s efforts to export these ideas to authoritarian countries in which Chinese SOEs own mineral drilling rights or have investments that could be threatened by political instability. Through bilateral agreements and technical agreements between government agencies to collaborate on cybersecurity and internet governance, Beijing has operationalized the Community with a Shared Future in a way that makes the world safer for authoritarian regimes. China’s philosophy for internet governance may be dressed up in language about the future of humanity, but in practice, it allows authoritarians to participate in today’s interconnected economy without taking on risk to their regime’s stability.

The Global China Hub is pleased to host the launch of “Community Watch: China’s Vision for the Future of the Internet,” a new report by Nonresident Fellow Dakota Cary which details the history of the Community with a Shared Future approach, how China has gotten other countries to participate in it, and China’s motivations for attempting to change internet norms.

A conversation with

Emily de La Bruyère
Co-founder
Horizon Advisory
Senior Fellow
Foundation for Defense of Democracies

Tom Hegel
Principal Threat Researcher, SentinelLabs
SentinelOne

Mallory Knodel
Chief Technology Officer
Center for Democracy & Technology

Moderated by

Jamie Tarabay
Reporter
Bloomberg News

Opening remarks

Report

Dec 4, 2023

Community watch: China’s vision for the future of the internet

By Dakota Cary

In 2015, Beijing released Jointly Building a Community with a Shared Future in Cyberspace, a white paper outlining the CCP’s vision for the future of the internet. In the eight years since then, this vision has picked up steam outside of China, largely as the result of Beijing’s efforts to export these ideas to authoritarian countries.

China Cybersecurity

Global China Hub

The Global China Hub researches and devises allied solutions to the global challenges posed by China’s rise, leveraging and amplifying the Atlantic Council’s work on China across its 15 other programs and centers.

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