A U.S.-China Subnational Symposium was held at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, April 23-24, 2019, organized jointly by the National Committee, the Lieberthal-Rogel Center for Chinese Studies at the University of Michigan, and the Michigan-China Innovation Center.

The first in an expected ongoing series of similar meetings, the symposium brought together over 30 officials from 25 U.S. states who work on China issues in the areas of trade and investment, education, culture, agriculture, and development. In this time of heightened tensions in the U.S.-China relationship, the symposium sought to educate, foster coordination, and develop best practices among participants.

This initiative revives the National Committee’s pioneering work in the municipal and state/provincial governance arena, having been the first to conduct exchanges among American and Chinese mayors, governors, sister cities, urban and regional planners, city managers, and transportation specialists. These have included eight delegations of Chinese mayors, beginning with the 1978 Municipal Administrators Delegation – the first group of PRC mayors to visit the United States – as well as a 1990 group led by then Shanghai Mayor Zhu Rongji, and three American municipal leaders delegations going to China; four groups of Chinese governors coming here and two groups of American governors going there; and about twenty exchanges (going both ways) in the area urban planning and management. Additionally, the Committee hosted several delegations from individual provinces such as Henan, Hebei, and Jiangsu that came to the States on informational survey trips.