Policy Memos

The Stagnation of the SCO: Competing Agendas and Divergent Interests in Central Asia

Policy Memo:


Publication Date:




The Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), comprising China, Russia, and four of the five Central Asian states (excluding Turkmenistan), continues to be a source of fascination and speculation. Western commentators remain divided over the organization’s exact purpose, scope and potential relationship with the West. While some have dismissed the SCO as a “paper tiger,” others have urged transatlantic policymakers to take immediate steps to engage the organization in order to avoid being left behind in the geopolitical competition across Central Asia. [...]

More (PDF)

About the author

Tow Professor of Political Science; Director of the Harriman Institute
Barnard College, Columbia University