How and with what effect does China engage within international institutions? At risk of great oversimplification, when considering China’s global activities the current literature has coalesced around two major schools of thought which focus on two competing and ostensibly mutually exclusive claims: either China is increasingly socialised to the rules and norms of international institutions and therefore order or China is set to offer a clear alternative to that order. This book enters this debate by suggesting that rather than starting from consideration of whether China is changing international order, we should start by conceptualising how it might be able to do so. It therefore acknowledges that China is rising into a particular and––in many ways––peculiar international order. It then allows the exploration in the remainder of the book as to whether China’s international behaviour conforms to any processes the enable states to challenge from within, focusing on the period to the end of the Hu Jintao administration.