Dr. Nicholas Bequelin is a Visiting Scholar at Yale Law School’s Paul Tsai China Center.
A prominent international human rights expert, Dr. Bequelin has spent most of his professional career in Asia, first completing his Ph.D. on contemporary state-building in Xinjiang, then working out of Hong Kong as a Senior Researcher for Human Rights Watch, and most recently as Amnesty International Asia-Pacific Regional Director, based in Southeast Asia. In addition to his major human rights reports and advocacy across Asia, the United States and Europe, his publications have appeared in scholarly journals such as The China Journal, The China Quarterly and The Journal of Asian Studies, and in many newspapers and magazines such as The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and Foreign Policy. He is a regular interviewee of major international media.
As a Visiting Scholar at Yale Law School’s Paul Tsai China Center, Dr. Bequelin is focusing on two areas. First, he is working on a new project about the economic determinants of human rights violations in authoritarian regimes. This project is part of a larger effort to strengthen more effective strategies in support of open societies, by reevaluating where human rights diplomacy is most effective in authoritarian or low state-capacity settings. Second, he will undertake research and other activities related to improving trans-Atlantic cooperation between the United States and its European allies and partners on policies concerning China, in coordination with Yale China Center initiatives underway in this area.
During a previous stint at the YLS China Center in 2015, Dr. Bequelin laid out the conceptual foundations for what became a grant-funded multi-year initiative on China’s human rights practices abroad, developed within Amnesty International. Dr. Bequelin holds a Ph.D. from the School of Advanced Studies in Social Sciences (EHESS), Paris, and is a graduate in Chinese from the School of Oriental Languages and Civilizations (INALCO) and a former Honorary Research Fellow at the Chinese University of Hong Kong.