China’s quest for quantum advantage—Strategic and defense innovation at a new frontier

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China has prioritized quantum science and technology as a critical frontier for its national security and development. To date, Chinese research has already reached a leading position within the discipline, enabled by state support and funding, as well as the recruitment and cultivation of talent. The rapid advances on this front can provide a valuable illustration of the dynamics of China’s evolving innovation ecosystem, including the increased prominence of leading technology companies, and even start-ups, as serious contenders. China’s strategy of military–civil fusion, which aims to create a more integrated ecosystem in science and technology, can contribute to enabling progress in dual-use developments. This case study draws upon the shared framework for this special issue, which provides a method by which to consider the factors that enable defense innovation. Looking forward, these advances could prove consequential for the future strategic balance between China and the United States.




Kania, E. B. (2021). China’s quest for quantum advantage—Strategic and defense innovation at a new frontier. Journal of Strategic Studies, 44(6), 922–952.

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