This episode covers China’s space program and space-related initiatives. China spends $6.1 billion dollars a year on its space program which is a source of pride for the Chinese people and a component of Chinese soft power. Professor Johnson-Freese offers insights into the size, nature, and strategic benefits of China’s space program and related activities. She analyzes China’s current programs and capabilities and also discusses China’s space rivalries, particularly with India. The episode then shifts to the geopolitics of China’s space programs highlighting issues of space regulation, space militarization, but also potential areas for cooperation.
Joan Johnson-Freese is a professor of National Security Affairs at Naval War College since 2002. She has served as a member of the Space Studies Board of the National Academies of Science, the Advisory Committee of the Secure World Foundation, on the faculty of the International Space University, and testified on space related matters before Congress on multiple occasions. She is the author of multiple books and articles on space, including Space Warfare in the 21st Century: Arming the Heavens (2016).