Gregory Afinogenov is an associate professor of History at Georgetown University. He specializes in the history of modern Russia. Afinogenov discusses his book, Spies and Scholars: Chinese Secrets and Imperial Russia's Quest for World Power. In it, he argues that several forms of knowledge, ranging from academic knowledge, commercial knowledge, and knowledge gained from government espionage, were important in enabling the Russian government to understand Qing China. The Russians gathered these forms of information about Qing China with the aim of leveraging in its favor economic, political, and social dynamics in China that were of concern to the Russian government.