Work on contemporary China, mostly in the popular media
- If they write it, you should read it
- (b) mostly organizations
China Digital Times - CDT is an independent bilingual media source. CDT translates pertinent information from Chinese social media and some leaked government directives, particularly those from the Propaganda Ministry. Very useful. A standard disclaimer - Since directives are sometimes communicated orally to journalists and editors, who then leak them online, the wording published here may not be exact. Some instructions are issued by local authorities or to specific sectors, and may not apply universally across China. The date given may indicate when the directive was leaked, rather than when it was issued. CDT does its utmost to verify dates and wording, but also takes precautions to protect the source. See CDT’s collection of Directives from the Ministry of Truth since 2011. China Digital Times
Sixth Tone – Writers from within China and outside, with stories of everyday Chinese that illustrate life, policy, economy. Offices in Shanghai. Modern stories that tell the truth but avoid too much politics. State funded, so not too much that would offend. David Bandurski on The Paper, the sister publication – “old wine, new bottle.” Still, worth a look Sixth Tone Sample work – How China’s Middle Class Moms Became Their Kids’ “Agents” Agent Moms
Macropolo - publication from the Paulson Institute at the University of Chicago Macropolo Thoughtful analysis of China economic conditions. The best understanding of both ends of the term political economy. Sample work - Data and Analysis of the fallout from the debt overhang and Footprint of Chinese in US Education
China File – Published by the Center on U.S.-China Relations at Asia Society. Orville Schell is the masthead publisher. Original reporting and articles from hundreds of contributors on every topic. From the About, on their Chinese name, zhongcanguan - Like the country we cover, our name contains multitudes and can be interpreted in many ways.
Our Chinese name was conceived and rendered graphically by Sun Yunfan. It contains the following Chinese characters:
中 (zhong), which means “central,” is the first character of the word for China. It can also mean neutral.
参 (can) means to join or to participate in, to refer, to consult, to reference, or to archive.
馆 (guan) is a word for a physical structure that appears in words for guest accommodations, libraries, museums, archives, and restaurants.
Put these characters together and, in addition to the many meanings suggested by their combination, they are a homophone for Chinese restaurant (中餐馆).
So, whether you see ChinaFile as a place for organizing and finding information, a tool for shaping and smoothing your views, or an establishment with a large menu and fare to suit a variety of tastes, we invite you to visit us often. China File
21st Century China Research Center - at University of California at San Diego. Susan Shirk, Barry Naughton, Victor Shih, and many others. The politics, public protest, and civil society papers available at SSRN - UCSD China Research Center
Chublic Opinion - monthly digest of opinion by an anonymous Shanghai native. Great Writing Sample work - Soft Power, Hard Sell September 18, 2017 and Anatomy of an (Alleged) Online Scam December 18, 2016.
Jamestown Foundation – self-described right wing think tank focused on American foreign affairs, features indepth writing by former military and defense industry professionals. China Brief features Willy Lam, who teaches at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, and whose work focuses on Chinese politics. Jamestown Foundation He was the second person I know to publicly suggest in 2015 that Mr. Xi might not retire in 2022.
Mercator Institute for China Studies – Mercator is a Berlin-based research institute on China economics, public policy, and foreign relations. https://www.merics.org/en/ Sample work – China Owns the Stage in Africa https://www.merics.org/en/blog/china-owns-stage-africa and an interview with Rogier Creemers, The social credit system: China’s tool for moral education https://www.merics.org/en/blog/social-credit-system-chinas-tool-moral-education , August 21, 2018
Tea Leaf Nation - The China blog of Foreign Policy magazine. Tea Leaf Nation Good coverage in many areas of China watching. Sample work - Beijing Deals Another Blow to Hong Kong’s Autonomy End of Hong Kong Autonomy and Is Beijing Getting Scared of Homeschooled Confucian Activists? (Sam Crane) Confucian activists?
Lowy Institute – Australian think tank focused on Australia’s role in the world, obviously balancing between the US and China. Lowy Institute
China Smack – is now suspended, I think, but retains some good daily life stories from a few years ago. China Smack
Caixin – the other magazine established by Hu Shuli, this one in 2010. Now paywalled. More insightful than Caijing and able to report news that other media shun. Zhejiang Daily Press Group, a state owned newspaper conglomerate, is a large investor. Their stake was purchased by China Media Capital in 2013, a central government media investment fund, along with Tencent (owner of QQ, the message service, and WeChat). As with many such magazines, the content in Chinese is different from that in English. Caixin
Caijing - News on business and finance. Fortnightly, since 1998. Has annual forecast and strategy edition. Caijing
Southern Metropolis Daily – A daily newspaper published in Guangzhou, with circulation mostly in the Pearl River delta region. In Chinese, but widely translated and reviewed. Sister to Southern Daily, which is the Guangdong CCP newspaper, and Southern Weekend, China’s most influential and still somewhat liberal newspaper. But the “Guangzhou-based family of papers are known to possess superior reporting and higher level of frankness than many PRC mainstream press outlets.” Southern Metropolis
South China Morning Post – venerable daily newspaper, now owned by Alibaba. Known for independence, but that is obviously in question now. Paywall was removed, making all content free access, and opening the way for SCMP to become a paper of record for China in Africa and the middle east. SCMP
Hong Kong Free Press – non-profit, English language news source, begun in 2015 as a response to loss of press freedom in Hong Kong. Looks very useful, for as long as it lasts. HKFP Sample work, describing another beginning of the end for Hong Kong freedoms - HKFP Mainland Rail
More Hangzhou – one of the China city magazines. Useful for expats, and a good perspective on what is happening locally. More Hangzhou
Jing Daily – the business of consumer luxury in China. Market trends, brand news, travel, how to spend money. Industry sectors – Art & Auction; Beauty & Health; Fashion; Food; Wine & Spirits; Investment & Real Estate; Watches & Jewelry. Jing Daily Sample work - Will Bottega Veneta’s Celeb Spokesman Jackson Yee Be Worth His Weight in Gold? August 28, 2018 Jing Daily Bottega-Veneta
NEW in 2018 - PandaPawDragonClaw – from their About - This blog is started by those who aspire to tell a better story about China’s involvement beyond its borders. We are journalists, campaigners, analysts, scholars and practitioners with years of experience navigating Chinese politics, bureaucracy, finance and their ramifications overseas. PandaPawDragonClaw Sample work - Letter from Ghana: Africa embraces its China partnership reluctantly, August 22, 2018 and a review of the Belt and Road, at five - BRI at five