What are the implications of the recent emergence of China and other non-Western economies? In the early 21st century, five rising or resurgent powers (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa) formed an exclusive international club: the BRICS. The BRICS perceive an ongoing global power shift and contest the West’s pretensions to permanent stewardship of the world economic order. Despite their diversity, the BRICS cooperate to realize joint goals, including greater influence within the International Monetary Fund and World Bank, and the development of “outside options” to create new multilateral institutions and opportunities in international financial markets. The analysis reveals their common aversion to being targets of financial sanctions and subject to U.S. dominance of the global financial system and their attempts to gain greater financial autonomy and a larger role for China’s currency in world markets.  Although each member has unique motivations for collaboration, China controls resources that permit it the greatest influence in intra-club decision-making and with the United States and other incumbent rule-makers. The BRICS future depends not only on their bargaining power and adjustment to markets, but also on their ability to overcome domestic impediments to sustainable economic growth, the basis for their international influence.


With Cynthia Roberts,Author

Research Scholar, Arnold A. Saltzman Institute of War and Peace Studies,

& Associate Professor of Political Science, Hunter College, City University of New York

 Commentary by Christian Deseglise

Co-Director of BRICLab, Columbia University

Moderated by Jack Snyder

Robert and Renee Belfer Professor of International Relations, Columbia University,

& Member, Arnold A. Saltzman Institute of War and Peace Studies


Thursday, March 29, 2018

12:15 p.m. -2:00 p.m.

1219 International Affairs

School of International and Public Affairs

420 West 118thStreet

New York City

Seating is limited – Advance registration suggested via the Columbia/SIPA calendars