Politics and International Relations
This article studies the post-Cold War Sino-Russian relationship in terms of the attempt
to establish a multipolar world order as a result of changes in America’s hegemonic
position in the global system. Our hypothesis is that the decline of US hegemony
accompanied by the disintegration of the Soviet Union and successful urban-industrial
development in China created the conditions for the reemergence of Sino-Russian
cooperation, which led to the establishment of new types of multilateral institutions
that pressure the United States towards a multipolar world order. Contender states, or
regional great powers, are hostile towards the hegemonic order in their region and
have the potential to challenge hegemonic dominance in their part of the world.
Contender states have leaders with regional ambitions incompatible with the
hegemonic dominance of the region, and both disrespect hegemonic rules for enemy-
friend interactions. In the post-Cold War era, the reemergence of Russia under Putin,
the successful economic development in China, and the declining hegemonic authority
of the United States has led Russia and China to become formidable contender states.
Despite differences between these states and societies, they challenge US hegemony in
Eurasia by promoting a multipolar world order.