Teamwork and Collaboration. Starting with only a small research staff in the 1990s, today CCAP has expanded to its size to more than 60 members. Although each of 4 research programs generally has its own research agendas, team and financial resources, the Center is fundamentally an integrated research group. The Agricultural Policy Analysis and Decision Support System Program (APP) is the core research group that links and coordinates a large share of the work at the Center. Research from other programs provides important parameters, data and insights for CPA program. At the same time, research results from the CPA program also provide information and analytical tools for the other 3 research programs. In sum, CCAP believes that only by having interrelated core research programs that collaborate closely, combined with a balanced development of research capacity, can it optimize the use of manpower and funding, encourage innovation amongst its individual programs, and promote even greater innovation within the Center as a whole. In other words, CCAP is a center, it collaborates in a way that the sum of the parts makes the whole greater and allows CCAP to efficiently achieve its vision and mission.
Focus on Data, Empirical Research and Advanced Research Methodology. By far the most distinctive characteristic of CCAP's research program is the propensity of its researchers to base empirical research on fieldwork that produces high quality survey data. Going to the field allows for direct observation of what is going on, which can lead to a better understanding of changing trends and emerging problems that are affecting those in rural
Attach Great Importance to Curriculum, Human Capacity-Building, Research and Academic Exchange. CCAP has a core team consisting of prolific academics in their areas and most faculty members have studied abroad. The faculty members include the Fellow of the World Academy of Sciences (TWAS), Honorary Life Member of the International Association of Agricultural Economists (IAAE), Fellow of Agricultural and Applied Economics Association (AAEA), the winners of the Outstanding Young Scientists given by NSFC, and the Cheung Kong Scholar Chair Professor. CCAP's faculty members also invest a significant amount of their time in building their own research agenda, teaching and mentoring its graduate students and visiting scholars. They also help other research and/or education institutions to train their staff as well as helping them to build a policy research network. CCAP also hosts various seminars and training courses. Annually, the Center invites foreign scholars who are at the cutting-edge of their fields to give lectures as way of keeping CCAP researchers up to date. The center also invites domestic and foreign economists to give seminars on a wide variety of topics that are relevant to the Center's research foci. The faculty members at CCAP also invite distinguished scholars to give lectures on economic theory, policy analysis, and other applied economics topics for its students and staff.
Close Dialogue with Policy Makers and Relevant Stakeholders. In selecting research topics and when undertaking economic analysis, above all, CCAP insists that all its work should be focused on China’s economic development and policy that benefit whole society. As one of major think-tanks in agricultural and rural development, CCAP has developed its strong linkage and effective policy dialogue channels with major decision-making bodies in China as well as various domestic and international organization, which has helped CCAP to play increasing role in the process of China’s decision making in agricultural and rural development policies.