On 14th of August a seminar “China’s great power climate responsibility” was held in Aleksanteri Institute, as a part of a new seminar series “New perspectives on Russia”. This presentation gave an introduction to Dr. Sanna Kopra’s new book China and Great Power Responsibility for Climate Change by Routledge, published in August 2018.
Based on a premise that great powers have unique responsibilities in international society, the book explores the way China’s rise to great power status transforms the notions of great power responsibility in general and in the context of international climate politics in particular. The book produces empirical knowledge on the Chinese party–state’s conceptions of state responsibility and the influence of those notions on China’s role in international climate politics. Regarding theory, the book builds on and contributes to the English School of International Relations and argues that the international norm of climate responsibility is an emerging attribute of great power responsibility. The book also discusses the way China will act out its climate responsibility in the future and ponders broader implications of China’s evolving notions of great power responsibility for climate change. Thus, it seeks to shed new light on the transformations China’s rise will yield and the kind of great power China will prove to be.