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Clash of Strategic Cultures

Clash of Strategic Cultures

Robert Spalding

Executive Summary

This paper seeks to describe the cultural and cognitive dissimilarities in how the United States and China pursue strategic competition. The first difference detailed involves how the two societies look at goals and time, as well as how those two factors lead to very different conceptions of strategy. The paper posits that the United States focuses more on a militaristic national security policy while China focuses more on economics and information. Other factors are described that attempt to explain how societal or cultural differences serve to enhance China’s strategy vis-à-vis the United States. Overall, the paper describes a future where China’s model may be more successful in a globalized world, which creates a magnetism for developing countries as well as the corporate sectors of developed countries. The paper concludes by briefly outlining American strengths and how it might use them to create a more effective strategy.

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