China’s long game in techno-nationalism


  • Shazeda Ahmed University of California Berkeley
  • Steven Weber University of California Berkeley



China, cybersecurity law, protectionism, techno-nationalism


The passage of China’s national cybersecurity law in June 2017 has been interpreted as an unprecedented impediment to the operation of foreign firms in the country, with its new requirements for data localization, network operators’ cooperation with law enforcement officials, and online content restrictions, among others. Although the law’s scope is indeed broader than that of any previous regulation, the process through which it was drafted and eventually approved bears similarities to three previous cases from the past two decades of Chinese information technology policy-making. In comparing these four cases, we argue that economic concerns have consistently overshadowed claims of national security considerations throughout laws directed at foreign enterprises.

Author Biographies

Shazeda Ahmed, University of California Berkeley

Shazeda Ahmed is a Ph.D. student at the School of Information, University of California Berkeley.

Steven Weber, University of California Berkeley

Professor at the School of Information and Department of Political Science, University of California Berkeley.




How to Cite

Ahmed, S., & Weber, S. (2018). China’s long game in techno-nationalism. First Monday, 23(5).