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Dr David Kerr

MA, MPhil, MSc, PhD (Glasgow)

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Member of the Centre for Contemporary Chinese Studies 


Biography and Research Specialism

David Kerr was Lecturer in the International Relations of China, 2002-2017. He joined Durham University in 2002 after studying and teaching at the University of Glasgow. He is a Research Associate of Durham University's Centre for Contemporary Chinese Studies and was Director of the Centre 2008-13.

David Kerr specialises in three areas: the foreign relations of the People's Republic of China and the Russian Federation; the security politics of Asia; and international relations between China and the European Union. In 2009-10 he was specialist adviser to the UK House of Lords inquiry into EU-China relations; inquiry report here. Google Scholar here.

Research Supervision

Successful Defences:
D. Amaraegbu (Nigeria) 'Corruption strategies in West Africa'; G. Filis (Greece) 'Geopolitics of the Caucasus'; C. Wu (PRC) 'China's Economic Statecraft'; A. Aborhmah (Saudi Arabia) 'The Saudi-China Strategic Partnership'; R. Bouveng (Sweden) 'Messianism in Russian Foreign Policy'; M.T.Khan (Pakistan) 'Missile Regime for South Asia'; Y. Yu (PRC) 'Political Contestation in China'; N. Al-Tamimi (Palestine) 'China's Oil Strategy and the Partnership with Saudi Arabia'; S.Fergus (UK) 'US foreign policy pluralism and China'; M. Drake (USA) 'China's entrepreneurs and democratic change'; H. Wu (Taiwan) 'Confucian Cultures and East Asian Democracy'; Y. Xu (PRC) 'China and International Responsibility in Africa'; P. Powcharoen (Thailand) 'North Korea and Rational Deterrence'; M. Sunuodula (UK) 'Multilingual education policy in Xinjiang'; S. Chen (PRC) 'Trust and mistrust in China-Japan relations'; R. Contreras Luna (Mexico) 'Siberia and the Asian Century'; S. Uslu (Turkey) 'Turkey's Energy Relations with Africa'; G. Charles (UK) 'Acculturation of Hui populations in Qinghai'; Y. Kim (ROK) 'China's Public Diplomacy and Africa'.

Research interests

  • Security and Diplomacy of China and the Russian Federation
  • Strategic Asia
  • Europe-China relations


Book review

  • Kerr, David (2013). 'Worse than a Monolith: Alliance Politics and Problems of Coercive Diplomacy in Asia'. By Thomas J. Christensen. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2011. 318p. $75.00 cloth, $28.95 paper. 'China's Search for Security'. By Andrew J. Nathan and Andrew Scobell. New York: Columbia University Press, 2012. 432p. $32.95. Perspectives on Politics 11(4): 1235-37.
  • Kerr, David (2012). 'China’s Policies on Its Borderlands and the International Implications' Yufan Hao and Bill K. P. Chou (eds.). China Review International 19(1): 78-84.
  • Kerr, David (2007). The English School and Asia-Pacific Security. Review of 'The Balance of Power in Asia-Pacific Security: US-China Policies on Regional Order'. By Liselotte Odgaard. London: Routledge, 2007. International Studies Review 9(4): 741-43.
  • Kerr, David (2007). 'China Turns to Multilateralism: Foreign Policy and Regional Security'. Guoguang Wu and Helen Lansdowne (eds.). East Asia 24(3): 337-40.
  • Kerr, David (2006). 'Strategic Partners: Russian-Chinese Relations in the Post-Soviet Era' by Jeanne L. Wilson. Slavonic and East European Review 84(4): 786-89.

Chapter in book

  • Kerr, David. (2018). Political Realism and Russia: state doctrine in three epochs. In The Edinburgh Companion to Political Realism. R. Schuett & M. Hollingworth (eds.) Edinburgh University Press. 406-416.
  • Kerr, David. (2017). Taking or Avoiding the Path to China-Us Rivalry: European Perspectives and Responses. In China, East Asia and the European Union. T. Halbertsma & J. Van der Harst (eds.) Brill. 169-185.
  • Kerr, David (2015). 'Conclusion: How Close is China to National Rejuvenation?'. In China's Many Dreams: comparative perspectives on China's search for national rejuvenation. David Kerr (ed.) Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. 246-261.
  • Kerr, David (2015). 'Introduction: China's Many Dreams'. In China's Many Dreams: comparative perspectives on China's search for national rejuvenation. David Kerr (ed.) Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. 1-9.
  • Kerr, David (2015). 'Civil Society and China's Governance Dilemmas in the Era of National Rejuvenation'. In China's Many Dreams: comparative perspectives on China's search for national rejuvenation. David Kerr (ed.) Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. 35-64.
  • Kerr, David. (2015). 'China's Search for Normative Power and the Possibilities of the Asian Century'. In China, India and the Future of International Society. Jamie Gaskarth (ed). Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield. 105-128.
  • Kerr, David. (2012). "Climate change of the Trans-Himalayan region and its impact on China-South Asia water security". In China’s Challenges to Human Security: foreign relations and global implications. Guoguang Wu. London & New York: Routledge. 80-104.
  • Kerr, David. (2012). "Problems of Grand Strategy in EU-China Relations". In China and the European Union: conflict or concord?. Jan van der Harst & Pieter Swieringa Maastricht: Shaker. 69-88.
  • Kerr, David. (2011). "Paradoxes of Tradition and Modernity at the New Frontier: China, Islam, and the problem of ‘different heavens". In China Orders the World: Normative Soft Power and Foreign Policy. Edited by: William A. Callahan, & Elena Barabantseva. Baltimore for the Woodrow Wilson Center Press Washington, D.C.: Woodrow Wilson Center, Washington DC/ Baltimore MD: The Johns Hopkins University Press. 143-179.
  • Kerr, David (2007). 'Between Regionalism and World Order: five structural factors in China-Europe relations to 2025'. In The International Politics of EU-China Relations. Kerr, David & Liu Fei Oxford: Oxford University Press. British Academy Occasional Paper 10.: 289-317.
  • Kerr, David (2001). 'Chinese Relations with the Russian Far East'. In The Russian Far East and Pacific Asia: Unfulfilled Potential. Bradshaw, M.J. Richmond: Curzon Press. 182-203.
  • Kerr, D. (1998). 'Eurasianism and Russian Foreign Policy'. In Is Russia a European Power?. K. Malfliet K.U. Leuven: Leuven.

Edited book

  • Kerr, David (2015). China's Many Dreams: comparative perspectives on China's search for national rejuvenation. The Nottingham China Policy Institute Series. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.
  • David Kerr & Liu Fei, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences. (2007). The International Politics of EU-China Relations. British Academy Occasional Papers. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Journal Article