Keeping Up with China for the English-speaking World

As a Westerner who has lived/worked/studied in China, I often stress how important it is to pay attention to what’s going on in Asia, especially in China. Unfortunately, it’s a bit daunting for the non-Chinese person. To help you with that, I’ve put together a list of the English-friendly resources I use to stay on top of things.

Remember, as with ANY journalism, take everything you read with a grain of salt, do your own analysis, and draw your own conclusions. Rarely is anything as it seems.

*Note: The English-language websites often have different content than the Chinese websites. I highly recommend visiting the Chinese websites and using a translation plugin in addition to visiting the English sites.

**Note2: This list is categorized, but in no particular order.

Business/Economics

Caixin Global

  • The most popular and arguably most respected english-language media company in China. Caixin was founded by Shuli Hu, a former Knight Fellow in journalism at Stanford (previously founded Caijing). Style will be very familiar for westerners.
  • English Link: https://www.caixinglobal.com/
  • Chinese Link: http://www.caixin.com/?HOLDZH

Caijing

  • Known as the “Bloomberg” of China. Known for its independent reporting and criticism of topics others don’t cover (has been the very important exception to the rule about strictures/llimits on Chinese domestic press). Founded by Shuli Hu before she left to start Caixin.
  • English Link: http://english.caijing.com.cn/
  • Chinese Link: http://www.caijing.com.cn/

Week in China

  • Independent Hong Kong-based publication providing context/commentary on key business trends emerging from China and a combination of Chinese and English language sources in press and internet. Exclusively sponsored by HSBC.
  • English Link: https://www.weekinchina.com/

South China Morning Post

Financial Times Chinese

  • Chinese language coverage by the Financial Times. Different content from Western Financial Times.
  • Chinese Link: http://www.ftchinese.com/

PE Daily

Politics

People’s Daily

Global Times

  • Newspaper under the People’s Daily. The Economist calls it a “remarkable innovation,” which addresses “realms once thought taboo.” The Wall Street Journal praises its “insightful stories.”
  • English Link: https://www.globaltimes.cn/
  • Chinese Link: https://www.huanqiu.com/

Xinhua

  • China’s official state-run press agency (China’s AP). Called the biggest and most influential media organization in China, as well as the largest news agency in the world in terms of correspondents. It is a ministry-level institution subordinate to the State Council and highest ranking state media organ alongside People’s Daily. It’s president is a member of the central committee of the CCP. Publisher and News Agency.
  • English Link: http://www.news.cn/english/
  • Chinese Link: http://news.cn/

China Radio International (CRI)

China Central Television (CCTV)

Lijian Zhao

Xijin Hu

Lawfare Blog

  • US-based blog dedicated to national security issues, published in cooperation with Brooking Institution. Covers China from a Western, defense perspective.
  • English Link: https://www.lawfareblog.com/

ChinaTalk

Macro Polo

  • The in-house think tank of the Paulson Institute, focused on decoding China’s economic arrival across different mediums (commentary, digital projects, analysis, multimedia).
  • English Link: https://macropolo.org/

Sinocism

  • Written by Bill Bishop, an entrepreneur and former media executive with over a decade’s experience living and decoding China. Arguably the most consistent and comprehensive China commentary source from a Westerner.
  • English Link: https://sinocism.com/
  • Twitter Link: https://twitter.com/niubi

China Law Translate

Startups/VC

36kr

  • Hands-down the top tech/startup media platform in China. Must read.
  • Chinese Link: https://36kr.com/

Kr-Asia

  • 36Kr’s english-language effort. Covers the tech/startup ecosystems in China, Southeast Asia, and India.
  • English Link: https://kr-asia.com/

Abacus

China Tech Blog

  • Started by Schwarzman Scholars. Provides on-the-ground coverage over China’s tech/entrepreneurship ecosystem from a global viewpoint.
  • English Link: https://www.chinatechblog.org/

China Money Network

Connie Chan

Avery Segal

Tech

Qbitai

Jiqizhixin

Institute for Interdisciplinary Information Sciences

  • The first education and research institution dedicated to interdisciplinary information sciences in mainland China. Led by Turing Laureate Andrew Yao, it is known for the world famous “Yao Class,” which counts the founders of Face++ and Pony.ai among its alumni. Great for keeping up with research in China.
  • English Link: https://iiis.tsinghua.edu.cn/en/
  • Chinese Link: https://iiis.tsinghua.edu.cn/

8BTC

  • All things crypto in China. The oldest and most influential independent paltform for bitcoin, blockchain, and cryptocurrency news in China.
  • Chinese Link: https://www.8btc.com/

Jeffrey Towson

  • Private equity investor, Peking University professor, and best-selling author. One of the rare Western analysts living in China. Solid content.
  • English Link: https://jefftowson.com/

Matt Sheehan

  • Fellow at Macro Polo and author of “The Transpacific Experiment: How CHina and California Collaborate and Compete for Our Future.” Focuses on China-US AI relations.
  • Twitter Link: https://twitter.com/mattsheehan88

Research/Educational Institutions

Tsinghua University

Beijing University (Beida)

Culture

Jing Daily

Radii

  • Independent media platform dedicated to understanding and sharing vibrant stories around culture, innovation, and life.
  • English Link: https://radiichina.com/

Elephant Room

  • Independent media project focused on contemporary China’s social, cultural, and business innovations.
  • English Link: http://elephant-room.com/

General Media Platforms

Wechat

  • Tecent’s iconic “super-app.” Essential for living in China and following the news through group chats, moments, and Top Stories feed. Best way to get “on-the-ground” info.
  • App-only. English version available and chats have a built-in translator, but you’d need to have existing friends in China and the news/content is almost exclusively in Chinese.

Weibo

Toutiao

  • Bytedance’s main product. Reading recommendation platform powered by machine learning.
  • Chinese Links: https://www.toutiao.com/

Douyin

  • Bytedance’s video product. Short videos. Although seemingly the same product as TikTok (international version), the two entities are completely separate. May be (probably) powered by the same technology, but content completely different.
  • Need Chinese phone number

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