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Project Wēishè

Understanding China's Force Modernization

Project Wēishè encourages scholarship on the capabilities, strategies, organization, and reforms of the PLA, PFP, and PAFMM’s defense acquisition systems and the political, economic, and industrial actors that inform its development.

Project Weishe

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Over the past three decades, the PLA and CCP have in concert reformed the Chinese military structure and acquisition system. The result: a leaner, more agile, and modernized fighting force capable of projecting power, defending PRC security interests and threatening the security underpinnings of the liberal international order.

The PLA’s rapid modernization effort has led to the emergence of a world-class military with a leadership willing to iterate on strategy and new technologies for the greater good of the force. Critical to this development has been dedicated acquisition reforms focused on marrying the warfighter with the innovator to solve warfighting challenges. These acquisition reforms have coincided with heightened investments in Chinese private capital networks, infrastructure, and education that have enabled the PRC’s new concept of Civil-Military Fusion. 

Created during the Defense Innovation Scholars program in conjunction with Gordian Knot Center directed readings, Project Wēishè works in support of the Gordian Knot Center’s mission to train and connect the next generation of national security innovators with the U.S. Government to solve the world's most intractable challenges. Specifically, Project Wēishè engages in the following lines of effort: 

  • Conducting primary source and scholarly literature research to advance the understanding of PLA’s acquisition system and its impact on great power competition across all elements of DIME-FIL. 
  • Educating future national security innovators about the PLA Acquisition system. 
  • Writing and disseminating articles and white papers on the PLA Acquisition system that informs both academics and warfighters. 
  • Informing lessons learned for the U.S. government with respect to addressing the strengths and weaknesses of the PLA acquisition system. 
  • Engaging military and civilian leaders on scholarship from the Gordian Knot Center for National Security Innovation.

Team Members