Dragon under the Blue Helmet: a quantitative analysis of China’s motivation for participation in UN peacekeeping operations

  • Hang Zhou China and Global Security Project, Stockholm


From a staunch opponent to a reluctant supporter and now an active participant, China has dramatically transformed its perceptions and behavior in UN peacekeeping during the past three decades. China’s shifting attitudes have attracted increasing academic attention. However, little quantitative study has been conducted to systematically explore China’s motivations and selection criteria for participation in UN peacekeeping. It is therefore difficult to make generalizable claims. This essay focuses on China’s participation from 1989 to 2010 and employs both logistic and linear regression models to examine the roles of China’s economic, territorial, reputational interests and security policy in China’s decision-making around peacekeeping. The statistical results show that the change in the PLA’s operational orientation positively influences China’s participation and China appears primarily to be a self-interested actor as to peacekeeping. 

Author Biography

Hang Zhou, China and Global Security Project, Stockholm
Research Assistant