The Mercator Institute for China Studies (MERICS) strives to encourage young Europeans to deepen their engagement with contemporary China and to give a greater voice to the next generation of China experts. To this end, MERICS launched the European China Talent Program (ECTP) in 2015.

Taking place in spring each year, the program gathers a select group of 15 young Europeans at the beginning of their careers for three days of intense discussions and exchange at MERICS in Berlin. Throughout the years, the ECTP has established a diverse network of alumni, working in national government, EU institutions, international organizations, academia, think tanks and consulting.

By giving selected candidates an opportunity to discuss topical issues in European China policy, MERICS hopes to contribute shaping Europe-China relations with innovative perspectives, and to train recent graduates and young professionals in their present and future dealings with China in a variety of professional contexts. 

The ECTP provides a platform for young China experts to exchange their views on Europe-China relations with senior decision-makers from politics, business and civil society. To ensure diverse representation and to facilitate discussions that are as comprehensive as possible, the latest edition of the ECTP not only welcomes applications by EU citizens, but also by those of EU accession countries and of EFTA states.

As China expands its international presence and becomes increasingly active in global governance, expertise on contemporary China is more necessary than ever. The ECTP will continue adapting itself to a fast-changing environment by tackling critical issues in European China policy. This will favor discussions on how Europe can make the most of opportunities and overcome challenges in its relationship with China in the years ahead.