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Yingyi Ma Examines Declining Enrollment of Chinese Students in the US in Brookings Article

December 6, 2023

Brookings Institution

Yingyi Ma

Yingyi Ma


"How America lost the heart of China’s top talent," written by Yingyi Ma, professor of sociology, was published by Brookings. 

This is the first year since 2008 that India has eclipsed China in sending the most international students to the United States. But why are Chinese students deciding to study elsewhere?

"During my conversations with Tsinghua University faculty and students regarding whether they would consider studying in the United States, they expressed fear and anxiety about what they perceive as 'a hostile America' toward China—specifically, the U.S. policies targeting Chinese talent and the broader anti-China rhetoric. Instead, they’d rather compete to get into the graduate program at Tsinghua or other top Chinese institutions," says Ma.

"The other reason for top students staying in China is the ascendancy of Chinese universities. China has been outpacing the United States in the number of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) Ph.D. graduates since the mid-2000s," Ma says.


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