Publication Date


Document Type


Committee Members

Pramod Kantha (Committee Member), Laura Luehrmann (Committee Chair), Kathryn Meyer (Committee Member)

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


How do authoritarian states prioritize between economic growth and territorial integrity? China, as an authoritarian state, is growing in political and economic capacity. By examining challenges to China’s territorial integrity, this study examines Chinese responses to visits by the Dalai Lama with government officials in Germany and Austria, as well as official visits by Uyghur dissidents to Germany and Turkey. Analyzing quarterly trade data and specific trade sectors with author created rating schema, patterns emerge. Employing a hybrid framework introduced by Sverdrup-Thygeson (2015), this study analyzes Chinese actions against perceived offending states. This study finds that levels of threshold are present in Chinese responses to perceived dissident threats. The conclusions of this study help answer how China prioritize responses to individuals bringing international attention to domestic issues and challenging Chinese state authority, these findings help indicate thresholds for actions taken by other authoritarian states.

Page Count


Department or Program

Department of Political Science

Year Degree Awarded


Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.