The Digital Silk Road (DSR) is the component of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) that aims to establish China as a global technological superpower. The potential contest to rewrite global rules could result in a technological and normative rift that will shape the geopolitics of the 21st century. Yet, despite the intrinsic political significance of China’s Digital Silk Road, we lack fundamental insights into its political and social consequences for recipient developing countries. In this interdisciplinary project, we focus our empirical analysis and theoretical development on the political and social consequences of DSR projects in recipient developing countries, as well as for the digital world order.