From 1997 to 2005, he taught at University of California, Los Angeles. From December 2010 to January 2017, he served as Dean of Guanghua School of Management, Peking University. He is a National Chang Jiang Scholar (awarded by Ministry of Education of China) and a National Outstanding Young Researcher (awarded by National Science Foundation of China). Professor Cai has published many academic papers in top international journals in economics and finance, in a wide range of areas including game theory, Chinese economy, industrial organization and corporate finance.
Professor Cai was elected as a Fellow and a Council member of the Econometric Society. He was a member of the National People’s Congress, and a member of the Central Committee of China Democratic League and Vice Chairman of its Committee of Economic Affairs. He was the founding president of The Chinese Finance Association (TCFA, overseas) and served on the boards of Sinopec Group, China Unicom, Everbright Bank, and other private corporations. He is the Independent Board of Director of CCB International (Holdings) Ltd., Sichuan Guodong Construction Group Co. Ltd., and China Petroleum & Chemical Corporation.