Books

01.23.17

China as an Innovation Nation

Edited by Yu Zhou, William Lazonick, and Yifei Sun
This volume assesses China’s transition to innovation-nation status in terms of social conditions, industry characteristics, and economic impacts over the past three decades, also providing insights into future developments.Defining innovation as the process that generates a higher quality, lower cost product than was previously available, the introductory chapter conceptualizes the theory of an innovation nation and the lessons from Japan and the United States. It outlines the key governance, employment, and investment institutions that China must build for such transition to occur, and examines China’s challenges and strategies to innovate in the era of global production systems. Two succeeding chapters explain the evolving roles of the Chinese state in innovation, and the new landscape of venture capital finance. The remaining chapters provide studies of major industries, which contain analyses of the evolving roles of investment by government agencies and business interests in the process. Included in these studies are traditional industries such as mechanical engineering, railroads, and automobiles; rapidly evolving and internationally highly integrated industries such as information-and-communication-technology (ICT); and newly emerging sectors such as wind and solar energy.Written by leading academics in the field, studies in this volume reveal Chinese innovation as diverse across industries and enterprises and fluid over time. In each sector, we observe continued co-evolution of state policy, market demand, and technology development. The strategies and structures of individual companies and industrial ecosystems are changing rapidly. The sum total of the studies is a great step forward in our understanding of the industrial foundations of China’s attempt to become an innovation nation. —Oxford University Press{chop}

China Builds World’s Biggest Solar Farm in Journey to Become Green Superpower

Tom Phillips
Guardian
Vast plant in Qinghai province is part of China’s determination to transform itself from climate change villain to a green energy colossus

Google Play and iOS Apps Demand Surges in India and China

Leo Kelion
BBC
The two leading app stores both experienced a tilt towards Asia in 2016, according to an annual study.

The Humble Ballpoint Pen Has Become a New Symbol of China’s Innovation Economy

Josh Horwitz
Quartz
China has grown by leaps and bounds during its quest for greater domestic innovation, but one of its most recent accomplishments is in an area that’s considerably more basic: ballpoint pens.

How Chinese Super App WeChat Plans To Lock Out Foreign App Stores In China

Yue Wang
Forbes
Since its launch on January 21 2011, WeChat has established a solid track record in pushing forward big game changing innovations within China’s mobile ecosystem.

China’s New Silk Road Is Getting Muddy

Joshua Eisenman and Devin T. Stewart
Foreign Policy
With the future of U.S.-China relations an open question for the incoming Donald Trump administration, many have focused on whether the president-elect’s promise to withdraw from negotiations over the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) will enhance...

China’s Electric Vehicle Strategy Paved With Potholes

Anjani Trivedi
Wall Street Journal
By the numbers, China looks like it’s on the way to dominating the global electric car industry. But

State Media Criticism of Trump’s ‘Addiction to Twitter Diplomacy’ Signals China’s Frustration

Kristin Huang
South China Morning Post
China’s state media has lambasted Donald Trump for conducting foreign policy through Twitter, in a commentary reflecting Beijing’s frustration with the US president-elect’s unorthodox style of diplomacy after his tweets broached sensitive issues in...

Chinese Access to U.S. Semiconductor Industry May Be Curbed

Ian Talley
Wall Street Journal
The Obama administration is finalizing a study that could lead to restrictions on Chinese investment in the U.S. semiconductor sector.

Twitter China Chief Kathy Chen Departs

Wall Street Journal
Twitter Inc.’s controversial China chief has departed after only eight months, the latest executive to leave amid a global reorganization. A stream of executives has left the company since it announced layoffs in October amid continued losses...

How China Built ‘iPhone City’ With Billions in Perks for Apple’s Partner

David Barboza
New York Times
A hidden bounty of benefits for Foxconn’s plant in Zhengzhou, the world’s biggest iPhone factory, is central to the production of Apple’s most profitable product

U.S. Charges Three Chinese Traders With Hacking Law Firms

Sara Randazzo and Dave Michaels
Wall Street Journal
Indictment says the traders bought shares of at least five publicly traded companies before announcements that the firms would be acquired

The 10 Largest Investments in China This Year

Eva Xiao
Tech in Asia
In the first half of 2016 alone, investors poured US $37 billion into Chinese startups: Didi Chuxing, Ant Financial, and Meituan-Dianping top the list

As China Pivots, Trump Risks Fighting an Old War

Andrew Browne
Wall Street Journal
Incoming U.S. administration highlights trade retaliation as Beijing shifts to a form of high-tech protectionism

The Memes That Took Over China’s Internet in 2016

Echo Huang and Zheping Huang
Quartz
This year's most popular memes reflected a more ruthless and aggressive—but also more fragile—China...

Donald Trump Accuses China of 'Unpresidented' Act Over US Navy Drone

Martin Pengelly
Guardian
President-elect makes spelling error in belligerent early morning tweet; China says ‘hyping up’ of issue is not helpful but agrees return of vehicle

China Says Trump’s Description of Drone Seizure as Theft is ‘Inaccurate’

Chuin-Wei Yap
Wall Street Journal
U.S., China militaries in smooth communication over drone, Chinese Foreign Ministry says

China Has Made Strides in Addressing Air Pollution, Environmentalists Say

Didi Kristen Tatlow
New York Times
Ma Jun, the director of the Institute of Public and Environmental Affairs, says transparency is up and pollution is down

China’s Digital Dictatorship

Economist
Turn the spotlight on the rulers, not the ruled: Instead of rating citizens, the government should be allowing them to assess the way it rules

China Puts New Weapons on South China Sea Islands, Report Says

Emily Rauhala
Washington Post
China appears to be adding new anti-aircraft weapons to a string of artificial islands in the middle of the disputed South China Sea

Popular Chinese Muslim Website Down After Posting Letter Critical of Xi

Christian Shepherd
Reuters
Users of China Muslim Net say they have been unable to access the website since Saturday

Small Investors Join China’s Tycoons in Sending Money Abroad

Emily Feng and Alexandra Stevenson
New York Times
It's Chinese investors and a developer in Brooklyn- with a digital lending twist ...

China Takes Aim at South Korea’s Lotte After Missile Move

Bryan Harris and Charles Clover
Financial Times
Series of probes follows Lotte’s surrender of golf course to host US-made Thaad missile shield

Risking Beijing’s Ire, Vietnam Begins Dredging on South China Sea Reef

Lincoln Feast and Greg Torode
Reuters
Activity visible on Ladd Reef in the Spratly Islands could anger Beijing, which claims sovereignty over the group and most of the resource-rich sea

After 1,000 Year Slumber, China Vows to Invent Again

Eva Dou
Wall Street Journal
Beijing spends billions on moonshot projects, hoping to shake off its reputation as a copycat economy and curb dependence on foreign powers

Depth of Field

12.06.16

From West Africa, the Czech Republic, and Home

Ye Ming, Yan Cong & more from Yuanjin Photo
In this month’s Depth of Field, Chinese photojournalists explore foreign terrain, both beyond China’s borders and within them. Independent photographer Yuyang Liu traveled the open seas to document the lives of Chinese and African workers who fish...

Silicon Valley’s Culture, Not Its Companies, Dominates in China

Paul Mozur
New York Times
Looking to break from a rigid workplace culture, Silicon Valley has captured the minds of China’s young entrepreneurs and investors

Microsoft, Intel, IBM Push Back on China Cybersecurity Rules

Eva Dou
Wall Street Journal
Comments offer rare glimpse at tussle between Beijing and U.S. tech companies

China is Censoring People’s Chats Without Them Even Knowing About It

Josh Horwitz
Quartz
Censorship in WeChat group chats is prevalent, and is done so that the sender isn’t even aware a piece of text has been scrubbed

Why Facebook’s China Adventure Will Need More than Censorship to Succeed

Benjamin Haas
Guardian
As social network develops tools to restrict users so China will let it in, some experts say it is ‘light years’ behind rivals already in place

Putin Brings China’s Great Firewall to Russia in Cybersecurity Pact

Andrei Soldatov and Irina Boroga
Guardian
The Kremlin has joined forces with Chinese authorities to bring the internet and its users under greater state control

Conversation

11.28.16

Should Facebook Self-Censor to Enter the Chinese Market?

Kaiser Kuo, Clay Shirky & more
The social network Facebook has reportedly developed software to suppress posts from users’ feeds in targeted geographic areas, a feature created to help the giant social media network gain access to China, where it is blocked. Facebook Chief...

'Social' Feature Turns China’s Alipay Into a Hook-up App

Josh Chin
WSJ: China Real Time Report
Alipay update leads to suggestive content flooding the typically staid financial app

Facebook Said to Create Censorship Tool to Get Back into China

Mike Isaacs
New York Times
The social network has quietly developed software to suppress posts from appearing in people’s news feeds in specific geographic areas

Conversation

11.21.16

Will China Take the Lead on Climate Change?

Sam Geall, Barbara A. Finamore & more
At a time when the world is looking to China and the United States, the leading emitters of greenhouse gasses, to cooperate under the terms of the Paris Climate Change Agreement of 2015, will China now take the lead in fighting climate change?

China Space Program: Two Astronauts Return to Earth After Monthlong Tiangong-2 Stay

Avaneesh Pandey
International Business Times
The astronauts spent 30 days in the space lab, where they carried out medical and scientific experiments, and tested the complex’s habitability

China Presses Tech Firms to Police the Internet

Eva Dou
Wall Street Journal
Third-annual World Internet Conference aimed at proselytizing China’s view to global audience

China’s Controversial, Out-Sized Role in Africa’s Digital Revolution

Eric Olander, Cobus van Staden & more
Africa is home to one of the fastest growing technology markets in the world. In fact, more African households own a mobile phone than have reliable electricity or clean water. The combination of a young population, quickly growing economies, and...

How China’s Government Helps —and Hinders— Innovation

Anil Gupta and Haiyan Wang
Harvard Business Review
Given its ideological leanings, China presents itself as a unique experiment in the power of the state to help the economy become more innovative

China’s Xi Urges Cooperation Among Nations in Governance of Global Internet

Catherine Cadell
Reuters
At an internet conference in Wuzhen, Xi called for greater cooperation among nations in governing the internet, while respecting "cyber sovereignty"...

Secret Backdoor in Some U.S. Phones Sent Data to China, Analysts Say

Matt Apuzzo and Michael Schmidt
New York Times
Security contractors discovered preinstalled software in some Android phones that monitors where users go, whom they talk to and what they write in texts

Depth of Field

11.08.16

Dongbei’s Last Match Factory, Capital Straphangers, Retracing the Long March...

Yan Cong, Ye Ming & more from Yuanjin Photo
In October, several publications marked the 80th Anniversary of the Chinese Communists’ Long March. We have chosen two stories that revisited this event and that were standouts, visually. Elsewhere, photographers followed stories both large and...

China Adopts Cybersecurity Law Despite Foreign Opposition

Bloomberg
The law requires internet operators to cooperate with investigations involving crime and national security, mandatory testing and certification of equipment

China’s Most Powerful Rocket Lifts Off from Island Launch Center

Stephen Chen
South China Morning Post
Analysts say development of Long March CZ-5 is crucial to success of nation’s future space program, including mission to Mars

A Toddler Dies as Her Mother Checks Her Phone, and China Wrings Its Hands

Owen Guo and Mike Ives
New York Times
The toddler’s death has led to an outpouring of anger on Chinese social media about the dangers of being obsessed with one’s phone

Alibaba Earnings Show It Again Defying China’s Slowdown

Paul Mozur
New York Times
Amid concerns about a slowdown of Chinese economic growth, China’s largest e-commerce company is showing that business on its platforms is holding steady

China Shows Off Latest Military Innovations at Air Show

Hannah Beech
Time
This year’s aerial extravaganza has much to flaunt, from a fifth-generation stealth fighter to China’s largest combat drone

Made in China

Bruce McKern
Quartz
Once known for cheap knockoffs, Chinese companies are now the world’s innovators

Amazon Delivers Prime Program to China

Alyssa Abkowitz and Laura Stevens
Wall Street Journal
The U.S. e-commerce behemoth hopes to capitalize on Chinese consumers’ desire for overseas products

China Officials Stuff Cotton Gauze into Air Monitoring Equipment to Falsify Results

Neil Connor
Telegraph
The environmental officials had also tampered with computers to alter the results of pollution monitoring in the northern city of Xi’an

Guess What India and China Need to Improve Relations? More Spies

Nicolas Groffman
South China Morning Post
Strange as it may sound, China and India need a basis in espionage to improve their relationship.

Environment

10.21.16

Will Chinese Money Transform Pakistan?

from chinadialogue
The development of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) has spurred debate in all quarters. Some perceive it as a form of neo-colonialism and criticize Pakistan’s government for promoting unethical business practices at the cost of ordinary...

Chinese Hackers Targeted U.S. Aircraft Carrier

Jeevan Vasagar and Geoff Dyer
Financial Times
Cyber security group says attack launched against visitors to vessel in South China Sea

I Broadcast Myself on the Chinese Web for Two Weeks

Viola Rothschild
In the process, I learned why Chinese millennials can't seem to unplug from the live-streaming craze...

In Push for G.M.O.s, China Battles Fears of 8-Legged Chickens

Amie Tsang and Cao Li
New York Times
China has ambitions to be a major player in genetically modified food, but first it needs to dispel images of poisoned seeds and contaminated fields

Netflix's New, Brilliant China Strategy: Stay Out of the Country

Josh Horwitz
Quartz
Netflix is saying zaijian to China, before it even got a foot in the door.

Depth of Field

10.18.16

Over-Protective Mothers, E-cigarettes, Sports Hunting, and More

Ye Ming, Yan Cong & more from Yuanjin Photo
A photojournalist’s job is to capture the unique and the universal—to portray brief moments that tell individual stories, yet are instantly relatable to a wide audience. The delightful task of curating that type of Chinese photojournalism is the...

China Launches Longest Manned Space Mission

Ben Blanchard and John Rutwitch
Reuters
China sent two astronauts into orbit to spend a month aboard a space laboratory--the plan is to have a permanent manned space station in service around 2022

Beijing: Facebook & Google Can Come Back to China as long as They “Respect China’s Laws”

Josh Horwitz and Echo Huang Yinyin
Quartz
Both companies still have business-facing services in China, but consumer-facing services have been blocked for years.