Jessica Batke is a ChinaFile Senior Editor. She is an expert on China’s domestic political and social affairs, and served as the State Department’s Bureau of Intelligence and Research Analyst for nearly eight years prior to joining ChinaFile. In 2016, she was a Visiting Academic Fellow at MERICS in Berlin, where she published papers on Chinese leadership politics and created databases to catalogue hard-to-find, high-level Chinese policy documents and details about policy advisory groups. She is proficient in Mandarin.

Last Updated: May 10, 2018
02.04.19

Visually Understanding the Data on Foreign NGO Representative Offices and Temporary Activities

Jessica Batke
The China NGO Project has created the following visualizations based on data available on the Ministry of Public Security website, as well as on our own research. To analyze foreign NGO representative offices, we looked at organizations’ countries/...

Features

01.08.19

Where Did the One Million Figure for Detentions in Xinjiang’s Camps Come From?

Jessica Batke
As journalists and scholars have reported in recent months on the campaign of religious and cultural repression and incarceration taking place in the Chinese region of Xinjiang, a central question has emerged: How many people has China’s government...
01.03.19

Two Years of the Foreign NGO Law: How Did 2018’s Registrations and Filings Stack up against 2017’s?

Jessica Batke
As we greet 2019, we have now seen two full years of Foreign NGO Law implementation in China. If foreign NGOs thought that 2017 had a “crossing the river by feeling for stones” sense to it, 2018 was the year that registration and filing processes...
12.20.18

What More Do We Know about Recent Detentions and Foreign NGOs?

Jessica Batke
More than a week after the detention of two Canadian citizens, we know very little about the nature of the charges against them. Of particular concern to the foreign NGO community is the detention of Michael Kovrig, an employee of the non-profit...
12.12.18

Foreign NGO Employee Detained in Beijing

Jessica Batke
On Monday night, Chinese authorities detained Michael Kovrig of the Brussels-based non-profit International Crisis Group (ICG) in Beijing. On Wednesday, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs suggested—though did not definitively state—that Kovrig may have...
09.07.18

Shanghai Labor Union Preventing “Enemy Infiltration” along with Managing Foreign NGOs

Jessica Batke
In an official document dated late July, the Shanghai Federation of Trade Unions, the city’s branch of the country’s official, Party-affiliated trade union, outlined the major themes of its work going forward, including preventing “enemy...

Features

08.23.18

What Satellite Images Can Show Us about ‘Re-education’ Camps in Xinjiang

Jessica Batke
Claims that “re-education” camps are merely vocational training centers seem even less credible after one looks at the work of Shawn Zhang. A law student focusing on jurisprudence at the University of British Columbia in Canada, in May Zhang began...
08.21.18

Chinese Partner Units: Who (and Where) Are They?

Jessica Batke
When considering the impact of the Foreign NGO Law, we often think first of the foreign NGOs themselves—who they are, and where they’re able to gain approval to carry out work in China. Yet, for foreign NGOs carrying out temporary activities in...
08.09.18

What More Can We Learn about Temporary Activities?

Jessica Batke
How common is it for a temporary activity to cover multiple provinces? Are some provincial Public Security Bureaus (PSBs) more likely to allow cross-provincial activities than others? How many of all the temporary activities are just being done by a...
07.25.18

Does China’s Foreign NGO Law Present a Non-profit Opportunity for Taiwan?

Jessica Batke from The News Lens
Establishing operations in Taiwan wasn’t the most logical option for international organizations whose missions demanded they be on the ground to engage with the challenging but dynamic “wild west” of civil society work in the P.R.C. Could the...
06.06.18

Here’s How NGOs Are Allowed to Operate in the P.R.C., Hong Kong, and the United States

Anita Venanzi, Vincent Chong & more
The last year has seen extensive discussion of China’s Foreign NGO Law, focusing especially on whether or not the law would cause a major shift in the kind of work foreign NGOs are able to do in the mainland. Less often examined, however, is how...

Conversation

06.04.18

How Should the World Respond to Intensifying Repression in Xinjiang?

Rian Thum, Rachel Harris & more
Deliberate, systematic human rights abuses are happening in China’s northwest. Reporting and research published in recent weeks shows that the Chinese government is targeting the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region’s roughly 11 million Muslims for “re...