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Elizabeth Larus - University of Mary Washington. Fredericksburg, VA, US

Elizabeth Larus Elizabeth Larus

Professor, Political Science | University of Mary Washington

Fredericksburg, VA, UNITED STATES

Dr. Larus is an expert in the politics of China, Taiwan, and Hong Kong




Elizabeth Freund Larus, Professor of Political Science, received a Ph.D. (1994) in government with a certificate in Asian studies from the University of Virginia. She earned an M.A. (1989) in public administration, also from the University of Virginia, and a B.A. (1983) in journalism from Creighton University. An expert in the politics of China, Taiwan, and Hong Kong, Dr. Larus conducted field research while living in Asia for three years. She speaks Mandarin Chinese and is the former press secretary for former U.S. Congressman Hal Daub. She is the author of the books Economic Reform in China, 1979-2003: The Marketization of Labor and State Enterprises (2005) and Politics and Society in Contemporary China (2012).

Her articles have been published in several professional journals including Issues & Studies, American Journal of Chinese Studies, Policy Studies Review, Southeast Review of Asian Studies, Asian Affairs, American Asian Review, and the Chinese-English magazine Voice of Han.

She also has written chapters in several books including Taiwan and the International Community; The China Handbook; Taiwan and Mainland China Toward the Twenty first Century; Adjusting to Capitalism: Chinese Workers and Their State; Across the Taiwan Strait: Exchanges, Conflicts, and Negotiations; and Remaking China’s Public Management.

Dr. Larus has presented the papers “Taiwan after the Global Financial Crisis: Where Do We Go From Here?” at the American Association for Chinese Studies conference and “Taiwan’s Reaction to Global Financial Crisis” at the American Political Science Association conference.

Among her awards are a Dissertation Fellowship Award and two duPont Fellowships, all from the University of Virginia. She also was the recipient of a Lingnan Foundation Research Grant and a Pacific Cultural Foundation Grant. She was a 2007-08 academic fellow of The Foundation for the Defense of Democracies. In addition, Dr. Larus is a member of the American Political Science Association, the Association for Asian Studies, the American Association for Chinese Studies, and the Conference Group on Taiwan Studies. Dr. Larus has served on the editorial board of Issues & Studies and as the president of the Virginia Consortium for Asian Studies.

Areas of Expertise (12)

Political Science University Teaching Public Policy International Relations Foreign Policy Research Community Outreach Public Speaking Policy Analysis Asia-Pacific Issues Economic Research Journalism

Accomplishments (3)

Taiwan Fellowship (professional)


Awarded by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Republic of China.

Research Grant (professional)

Awarded by the Lingnan Foundation.

Research Grant in Chinese Studies (professional)

Awarded by the Pacific Cultural Foundation.

Education (3)

University of Virginia: Ph.D., Government 1994

With a certificate in Asian studies.

University of Virginia: M.A., Public Administration 1989

Creighton University: B.A., Journalism 1983

Affiliations (5)

  • American Association for Chinese Studies
  • China Studies Group
  • American Political Science Association
  • Conference Group on Taiwan Studies
  • Virginia Consortium for Asian Studies

Media Appearances (11)

The U.S. May Have Snubbed a Critical Dealmaker in China Trade Talks

Fortune.com  online


In China, the situation is almost entirely flipped, with high-level control making use of focused experts. “The Chinese communist party has what’s called leading small groups—LSGs—for all important policy matters,” said Elizabeth Larus, a professor of political science and international affairs at the University of Mary Washington and expert in the politics of China. “Xi Jinping is the leader of most of these leading small groups.” Xi also happens to be the president of the PRC and the general secretary of the Communist Party of China.

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Is Brunei instating harsh anti-LGBT laws to appease Saudi Arabia for economic favors?

meaww.com  online


The most recent measures announced Wednesday put some teeth into Brunei’s penal code," Elizabeth Freund Larus, Professor of Political Science and International affairs at the University of Mary Washington in Virginia, told MEA Worldwide (MEAWW).

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China-Taiwan Relations

CBNC Asia; China Times.com  online


China-Taiwan Relations (CBNC Asia; China Times.com)

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Beware Beijing, A Hawk is Circling

International Policy Digest  online


China-Taiwan relations expert, Dr. Elizabeth Freund Larus, expects Risch “to keenly follow developments on Taiwan,” which may result in his past support of arms sales to Taiwan transforming into an SFRC objective. Such legislation marshaled by Risch and the SFRC will defy China who “is firmly opposed to any country to have any military links with Taiwan.”

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China has 'whole host of tools' that can really hurt Taiwan: Professor

CNBC  online


Discussing the possibility of Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen visiting the U.S. Congress, Elizabeth Freund Larus of the University of Mary Washington says it would be a seriously "bad move."

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Fulbright awards go to 2 at Mary Washington

Richmond Times-Dispatch  online


Elizabeth Freund Larus and Stephen J. Farnsworth were named a Fulbright Scholar and Fulbright Specialist, respectively, UMW announced last week.

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"Hades," the submarine base with which Beijing will shake the South China Sea

Agencia EFE  online


"China will not hesitate to militarize the artificial intelligence base in the Manila Trench, in fact, it has already militarized the artificial islands it has built, despite promises that it would not," says Elizabeth Larus, professor at the University of Mary Washington and an expert on Asia-Pacific conflicts.

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Taiwan seeks to bolster international support after China threats

Financial Times  online


Elizabeth Freund Larus, a Taiwan expert at the University of Mary Washington in Virginia, said China would probably seek to capitalize on a series of DPP losses in local elections in November to sow discontent among Taiwanese and boost support for the China-friendly opposition party, the Kuomintang, ahead of the 2020 presidential election. “China’s leaders are like sharks in the water: they smell blood,” she said.

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Xi Jinping's speech on Taiwan was 'not un-anticipated': P

CNBC.com  online


Chinese President Xi Jinping called for talks with Taiwan on unification in a speech on Jan. 2, but Elizabeth Freund Larus of the University of Mary Washington says she doesn't expect Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen to make any changes in cross-strait...

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Washington escalates trade secrets fight with Beijing

China Global News Network  online


Washington escalates trade secrets fight with Beijing

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Academic says the US is taking a low-key approach to Taiwan ties

CNBC.com  online


Elizabeth Freund Larus of the University of Mary Washington says the U.S. is taking a cautious approach to how it interacts diplomatically with Taiwan to avoid upsetting the one China policy.

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Event Appearances (1)

Taiwan after the Global Financial Crisis: Where Do We Go from Here?

American Association for Chinese Studies annual meeting  Winston-Salem, NC


Articles (4)

Technological Change and China's Naval Modernization: Security Implications for Taiwan Palgrave MacMillan


In "Cross-Taiwan Strait Relations in an Era of Technological Change: Security, Economic and Cultural Dimensions," edited by Paul Irwin Crookes and Jan Knoerich.

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Politics and Society in Contemporary China Lynne Rienner Publishers


This authoritative text captures the dynamism of Chinese politics and society. Elizabeth Larus begins with a broad sweep of China's modern history—from the imperial era to the present—providing essential context for understanding the current political environment. She then makes sense of the dramatic political, social, and economic changes that have occurred across some six decades. The result is a rich and detailed analysis that is both thought-provoking and accessible, appropriate for students at all levels.

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Taiwan's Quest for International Recognition Issues & Studies


To be attractive to other states, Taiwan has constructed a national identity based on universal values of democracy, freedom, and economic prosperity. This article examines Taiwan's use of soft power and national identity issues to gain international recognition of national sovereignty.

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Economic Reform in China, 1979-2003: The Marketization of Labor and State Enterprises Edwin Mellen Press


This book provides a clear, yet intricate understanding of the issues, focusing on the state industrial enterprises and affirming that a policy of gradualism was politically prudent in the 1980s and 90s given the political constraints and resistance to reforms by some labor groups. It depicts the delicate balance between state owned enterprises and domestic worker dissatisfaction.

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