INQUIRY 2020-21

Inquiry 2020-21
The Sleeping Giant Has Awoken: China as a Regional and Global Influence

Simulation Program

Inquiry is a global issues simulation program for high school students developed by EPIIC. Inquiry provides a unique opportunity for high school students from across the country to participate in a weekend-long intellectual and challenging simulation centered on a pertinent international or domestic issue. Inquiry creates a forum for young students to engage deeply with compelling issues through intensive study, role-play, and mentorship by Institute students studying the topic in-depth. Inquiry also organizes a yearly investigative trip, typically during the winter intersession, to the country or region of interest. The Inquiry simulation and trip prepare students for global citizenship and develop leadership skills by emphasizing a cooperative approach to achieving progress on complex problems. In the past 20 years, more than 4,800 high school students and 750 Tufts students have participated in the program.


The 2021 Inquiry Simulation Slideshow: Schedule, Program and Description


Dear Participants,

We applaud your willingness to come together to discuss issues critical to Asia’s regional security. As we prepare to convene in April, the world is still contending with the global pandemic, China has brought moon rocks back to Earth, nationalism in the region is growing, concerns grow about the uses of state surveillance, reverberations continue from North Korea blowing up a joint liaison office with the South near the North's border town of Kaesong, tensions have escalated as both US and Chinese war ships transit the Taiwan Straits, and Southeast Asian countries are wary of China’s continued presence and claims in the South China Sea.

The modes and methods that all countries choose to use to engage with each other will have log-lasting effects on regional security and development, as well as on global security and development.

When we convene in April, we will be considering a broad range of issues within the following committees: South China Sea, the Korean Peninsula, Taiwan Straits, Climate Change and Global Health, Trade and Technology, Development, and Governance, Human Rights and Social and Economic Justice.



Robert S. Ross is Professor of Political Science at Boston College and Associate, John King Fairbank Center for Chinese Studies, Harvard University. He received his Ph.D. in Political Science from Columbia University in 1984. He has taught at Columbia University and at the University of Washington and in 1989 was a Guest Scholar at the Brookings Institution in Washington, D.C. In 1994-1995 he was Fulbright Professor at the Chinese Foreign Affairs College, in 2003 he was a Visiting Senior Fellow at the Institute of International Strategic Studies, Qinghua University, Beijing, and in 2014 was Visiting Scholar, School of International Relations, Peking University. In 2009 he was Visiting Scholar, Institute for Strategy, Royal Danish Defence College.

From 2009-2014 he has been Adjunct Professor, Institute for Defence Studies, Norwegian Defence University College. Professor Ross’s research focuses on Chinese security policy and defense policy, East Asian security, and U.S.-China relations. His recent publications include Chinese Security Policy: Structure, Power, and Politics, China’s Ascent: Power, Security, and the Future of International Politics, and New Directions in the Study of Chinese Foreign Policy. His other major works include Normalization of U.S.-China Relations: An International History; Great Wall and Empty Fortress: China’s Search for Security, Negotiating Cooperation: U.S.-China Relations, 1969-1989, and The Indochina Tangle: China’s Vietnam Policy, 1975-1979. Professor Ross is the author of numerous articles in World Politics, The China Quarterly, International Security, Security Studies, Orbis, Foreign Affairs, Foreign Policy, The National Interest, and Asian Survey. His books and articles have been translated in China, Taiwan, South Korea, Japan, and various European countries. Professor Ross has testified before various Senate and House committees and the Defense Policy Board Advisory Committee, he advises U.S. government agencies, and he serves on the Academic Advisory Group, U.S.-China Working Group, United States Congress. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the National Committee for U.S.-China Relations. Professor Ross is Senior Advisor to the Institute for American Studies, Shanghai. He is a founding member and former board member of the United States Committee of the Council for Security Cooperation in the Asia-Pacific (USCSCAP).


Discussions will focus on seven major areas:

  • South China Sea
  • Taiwan
  • Human Rights
  • Development
  • Trade and Technology
  • The Korean Peninsula
  • Climate Change, Global Health and Resilience





Jason Feng, Benjamin Maclean

Columbia Prep


Luke Heald, Colin Kennedy

Boston Latin HS

European Union & United Kingdom

Alex Schnur, Rie Takemoto

El Puente Academy


Elena Chavez, Arjun Padalkar, Sofie Lasko, Bella Preneta, Daniel DiGiovanni



Gwen Mecsas, Leo Westgard

Little Village HS


Frankie Michielli, Brett Zakheim

Malden HS

North Korea

Carlos Irisarri

Columbia Prep

South Korea

David Jiang

Boston Latin HS


Ben MacLean

Packer Collegiate

United States

Elliot Lam

Columbia Prep