China’s grand strategy within 21st-century megatrends


  • Zoltán Bartha University of Miskolc



China, foresight, grand strategy, megatrends, narrative analysis


The main aim of this study is to identify possible components of China’s grand strategy and check how they can influence global megatrends. Based on a literature review, four grand strategy components are identified: 1) building up military power, 2) consolidating power at the peripheries and pushing for more control over disputed territories, 3) expanding economic influence through the Belt and Road Initiative, and 4) establishing new standards in digital technologies and promoting cyber sovereignty. These strategic tools can directly affect the following megatrends that are commonly mentioned in the literature: shift of economic power, emerging markets, new economic order; digitalisation; globalisation; deglobalization, trade reduction; diversity of governance, trust in the political system; and scarce resources. Using data taken from Google Trends it is shown that in the 2004-2023 period the trends of Chinese grand strategy terms correlate most with terms that represent the following three megatrends: digitalisation, globalisation, and scarce resources.

Információk a szerzőről

Zoltán Bartha, University of Miskolc

PhD, Associate Professor


Bader, A. (2021). How can we quantify similarity between time series? Medium.

Bartha, Z., & Molnár, L. (2016). The SLEM Model as an Assessment Method for Local Goods’ Competitiveness. Theory, Methodology, Practice, 12(Special Issue), 5–13.

Batt, P. J. (2018). Responding to the challenges presented by global megatrends. Acta Horticulturae, 1205, 1–12.

Bhargava, R. (2020). Non-obvious megatrends: How to see what others miss and predict the future ([Revised 10th anniversary edition]). Ideapress Publishing.

Biswas, R. (2016). Asian Megatrends. Palgrave Macmillan UK.

Blagden, D. (2021). Roleplay, realpolitik and ‘great powerness’: The logical distinction between survival and social performance in grand strategy. European Journal of International Relations, 27(4), 1162–1192.

Boschetto Doorly, V. (2020). Megatrends Defining the Future of Tourism: A Journey Within the Journey in 12 Universal Truths (Vol. 6). Springer International Publishing.

Bracken, P. J., Li, H., Sutter, R. G., Cossa, R. A., Murphy, A. M., Sachdeva, G., Walker, J. W., Kuchins, A., & Zhu, Z. (2021). China’s grand strategy: A roadmap to global power? (D. Denoon, Ed.). New York University Press.

Doshi, R. (2021). The Long Game: China’s Grand Strategy to Displace American Order (1st ed.). Oxford University PressNew York.

Gaddis, J. L. (2005). Strategies of containment: A critical appraisal of American national security policy during the Cold War (Rev. and expanded ed). Oxford University Press.

Galinska, B. (2018). Logistics megatrends and their influence on supply chains. 18 th international scientific conference Business Logistics in Modern Management, Osijek, Croatia.

Goddard, S. E. (2018). Embedded Revisionism: Networks, Institutions, and Challenges to World Order. International Organization, 72(4), 763–797.

Goddard, S. E., & Krebs, R. R. (2015). Rhetoric, Legitimation, and Grand Strategy. Security Studies, 24(1), 5–36.

Hajdú, N. (2013). Trategic and Operative Marketing Controlling. Theory, Methodology, Practice, 9(1), 23–31.

Hajkowicz, S. (2015). Global megatrends: Seven patterns of change shaping our future. CSIRO Publishing.

Haluza, D., & Jungwirth, D. (2023). Artificial Intelligence and Ten Societal Megatrends: An Exploratory Study Using GPT-3. Systems, 11(3), 120.

Hessel, V. (2014). Megatrends – megascience? Green Processing and Synthesis, 3(2), 99–100.

Hieker, C., & Pringle, J. (2021). The Future of Leadership Development: Disruption and the Impact of Megatrends. Springer International Publishing.

Horvath, A., Papp, A. T., Liptak, K., Molnar, L., Markovics, K. S., Manafi, I., & Musinszki, Z. (2022). Decarbonisation and financial performance of energy companies. Amfiteatru Economic, 24(61), 701–719.

Ilbury, C., & Sunter, C. (2001). The mind of a fox (1st ed). Human & Rousseau/Tafelberg.

IPSOS. (2019). Global Trends 2020. IPSOS Mori.

Jeflea, F. V., Danciulescu, D., Sitnikov, C. S., Filipeanu, D., Park, J. O., & Tugui, A. (2022). Societal Technological Megatrends: A Bibliometric Analysis from 1982 to 2021. Sustainability, 14(3), 1543.

Lebedeva, M. M., & Kuznetsov, D. A. (2022). Megatrends of World Politics: Globalization, Integration and Democratization (1st ed.). Routledge.

Linthorst, J., & De Waal, A. (2020). Megatrends and Disruptors and Their Postulated Impact on Organizations. Sustainability, 12(20), 8740.

Lustig, P., & Ringland, G. (2018). Megatrends and how to survive them: Preparing for 2032. Cambridge Scholars Publishing.

Malik, R., & Janowska, A. A. (2018). Megatrends and their use in economic analyses of contemporary challenges in the world economy. Prace Naukowe Uniwersytetu Ekonomicznego We Wrocławiu, 523, 209–220.

Mandelbaum, H. G., & Weiffen, B. (2023). The Belt and Road Initiative and Autocracy Promotion as Elements of China’s Grand Strategy. In A. Mihr, P. Sorbello, & B. Weiffen (Eds.), Securitization and Democracy in Eurasia (pp. 361–374). Springer International Publishing.

Mastro, O. S. (2022). China’s Grand Strategy. Asia Policy, 29(1), 161–172.

Mittelstaedt, J. D., Shultz, C. J., Kilbourne, W. E., & Peterson, M. (2014). Sustainability as Megatrend: Two Schools of Macromarketing Thought. Journal of Macromarketing, 34(3), 253–264.

Mokry, S. (2023). Grand strategy and the construction of the national interest: The underpinnings of Sino-US strategic competition. International Politics.

Myllyvirta, L., & Qin, Q. (2023, August 10). Analysis: China’s CO2 emissions in Q2 2023 rebound to 2021’s record levels. Carbon Brief.

Naisbitt, D., & Naisbitt, J. (2019). Mastering megatrends: Understanding and leveraging the evolving new world.

Naisbitt, J., & Aburdene, P. (1990). Megatrends 2000: Ten new directions for the 1990’s (1st ed). Morrow.

National Intelligence Council. (2021). Global trends 2040: A more contested world.

OECD. (2019). OECD Regional Outlook 2019: Leveraging megatrends for cities and rural areas. OECD Publishing.

Osnos, E. (2020, January 6). The Future of America’s Contest with China. The New Yorker.

Retief, F., Bond, A., Pope, J., Morrison-Saunders, A., & King, N. (2016). Global megatrends and their implications for environmental assessment practice. Environmental Impact Assessment Review, 61, 52–60.

Rogers, S. (2016, July 1). What is Google Trends data—And what does it mean? Google News Lab.

Roubini, N. (2022). Megathreats: Ten dangerous trends that imperil our future, and how to survive them (First edition). Little, Brown and Company.

Salzman, M. L. (2022). The new megatrends (First edition). Currency.

Silove, N. (2018). Beyond the Buzzword: The Three Meanings of “Grand Strategy”. Security Studies, 27(1), 27–57.

Taleb, N. N. (2007). The black swan: The impact of the highly improbable (1st ed). Random House.

Utikal, H., & Woth, J. (2015). From megatrends to business excellence: Managing change in the German chemical and pharmaceutical industry. Journal of Business Chemistry, 12(2), 41–47.

Vielmetter, G., & Sell, Y. (2014). Leadership 2030: The six megatrends you need to understand to lead your company into the future. AMACOM, American Management Association.

Von Groddeck, V., & Schwarz, J. O. (2013). Perceiving megatrends as empty signifiers: A discourse-theoretical interpretation of trend management. Futures, 47, 28–37.

Vukanović, Z. (2018). The influence of ICT megatrends on global megatrends. Informatologia, 51(1–2), 43–52.

Zou, B., Poncin, S., & Bertinelli, L. (2022). The U.S.-China Supply Competition for Rare Earth Elements: A Dynamic Game View. Environmental Modeling & Assessment, 27(5), 883–900.




Hogyan kell idézni

Bartha, Z. (2024). China’s grand strategy within 21st-century megatrends. Észak-magyarországi Stratégiai Füzetek, 21(02), 34–45.