Experts

Aynne Kokas

Fast Facts

  • Non-resident scholar at Rice University’s Baker Institute of Public Policy
  • Term member of the Council on Foreign Relations
  • Fellow in the National Committee on United States-China Relations’ Public Intellectuals Program
  • Expertise on U.S.-China relations, cybersecurity, media industry

Areas Of Expertise

  • Foreign Affairs
  • Asia
  • Domestic Affairs
  • Media and the Press
  • Science and Technology

Aynne Kokas is an associate professor of media studies at the University of Virginia. Kokas’ research examines Sino-U.S. media and technology relations. Her book Hollywood Made in China (University of California Press, 2017) argues that Chinese investment and regulations have transformed the U.S. commercial media industry, most prominently in the case of media conglomerates’ leverage of global commercial brands. Her project at the Wilson Center, Border Control on the Digital Frontier: China, the United States, and the Global Battle for Data Security, examines the cybersecurity policy implications of the Sino-U.S. data trade.

Kokas is a non-resident scholar at Rice University’s Baker Institute of Public Policy, a UVA Wilson China Fellow, a life member of the Council on Foreign Relations, and a fellow in the National Committee on United States-China Relations’ Public Intellectuals Program. Her writing and commentary appear regularly in media outlets including the BBC, CNBC, NPR’s Marketplace, The Washington Post, and Wired.

Aynne Kokas News Feed

China's recent crackdown on many things cultural rang some alarm bells. But what does it mean in practice? And what should US policymakers think about it? We talk to China experts Aynne Kokas and Robert Daly to understand.
Aynne Kokas Wilson Center
Aynne Kokas, a media studies professor at the University of Virginia and the author of the book "Hollywood Made in China," told Insider that the "Shang-Chi" controversy is happening "in parallel with widespread tightening" of China media and its film market.
Aynne Kokas Business Insider
According to analysts, studios are in a lose-lose position. Aynne Kokas, an associate professor of media studies at the University of Virginia and the author of Hollywood Made in China, explains that if Hollywood were to acknowledge self-censorship, the media blowback in the West would be significant, and China’s risk-averse government might blacklist Hollywood films to minimize attention.
Aynne Kokas The Atlantic
Aynne Kokas, assistant professor of media studies at the University of Virginia in the United States, believes that the entertainment industry in the United States and China will face pressure, but the pressure on Chinese artists comes from the government, and the United States comes from the market.
Aynne Kokas VOA News
But as of a few days ago, she had disappeared from Chinese social media. Her work was also removed from video streaming sites in China. The Chinese government hasn't commented. Aynne Kokas, an expert in Chinese media at the University of Virginia, sees this in a broader context. "I see this as part of a larger pressure campaign by the Chinese government to crack down on private entities that can wield a lot of social power."
Aynne Kokas NPR Morning Edition
On July 1, thousands of Communist Party youth members flooded Chang'an Avenue, at the heart of the nation’s capital, singing songs like “Without the Communist Party, There Would Be No New China” to serenade Chinese President Xi Jinping. The highly televised tribute marked the beginning of the Chinese government’s centenary celebration and projected a youthful image of the Communist Party (CCP). Yet, despite this powerful display of patriotism, the reality of Party efforts to advance youth engagement through media is much more complicated.
Aynne Kokas Wilson Center