Robert Sutter

Robert Sutter

Professor of Practice of International Affairs; Director, B.A. Program in International Affairs
Room 503K
Address: Elliott School of International Affairs
1957 E Street, NW
Phone: 202-994-5886

Areas of Expertise

Contemporary U.S. policy toward Asia and the Pacific; political, security and economic determinants of change in Asia and the Pacific; Taiwan – internal and international affairs; Chinese foreign relations; U.S.-China relations; salient issues in contemporary China and their international implications; and the making of U.S. foreign policy including the roles of Congress and the Intelligence Community.


Robert Sutter is Professor of Practice of International Affairs at the Elliott School of George Washington University beginning in 2011. He also serves as the school's Director, Program of Bachelor of Arts in International Affairs.

A Ph.D. graduate in History and East Asian Languages from Harvard University, Sutter taught full time for ten years at Georgetown University's School of Foreign Service and part-time for thirty years at Georgetown, George Washington, Johns Hopkins Universities, or the University of Virginia. He has published 20 books, over 200 articles and several hundred government reports dealing with contemporary East Asian and Pacific countries and their relations with the United States. His most recent book is Foreign Relations of the PRC: The Legacies and Constraints of China's International Politics since 1949 (Rowman and Littlefield 2013).

Sutter's government career (1968-2001) involved work on Asian and Pacific affairs and US foreign policy for the Congressional Research Service of the Library of Congress, the Central Intelligence Agency, the Department of State, and the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. He was for many years the Senior Specialist and Director of the Foreign Affairs and National Defense Division of the Congressional Research Service. He also was the National Intelligence Officer for East Asia and the Pacific at the US Government's National Intelligence Council, and the China Division Director at the Department of State's Bureau of Intelligence and Research.


Ph.D., Harvard University

Classes Taught

IAFF 2040 China's Rise and Implications
IAFF 2091 East Asia: Past and Present
IAFF 2190W Congress and U.S. Foreign Policy
IAFF 2190W The United States and Asia: Critical Issues
IAFF 3182 US-China Relations
IAFF 6302 Taiwan: Internal Developments and Foreign Policy
PSC 6346 U.S. Foreign Policy Makings: Process and Issues
PSC 6372 Foreign Policy of China
PSC 6475 International Politics – East Asia