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What do you need to know as a China watcher in 2023? (Part 2: tips and tools) | Following the yuan
⚙️A crowdsourced guide to help you kickstart or get better at China watching. ⚙️ Tune in to our Twitter Space on June 13!
Last week, I wrote about the increasingly polarizing narrative surrounding China, stemming from a lack of reporting resources, government restrictions, and deep-rooted prejudice.
This week, I aim to present something practical for you – whether you intend to "watch" China for work or personal reasons. Because when it comes to rolling up your sleeves, having an objective mindset is simply not enough; you need to know how to navigate the landscape.
For this purpose, I have invited a panel of experts including Lizzi Lee from WallStTV, Robert Wu from BigOne Lab, Manya Koetse from What's On Weibo, Zak Dychtwald from Young China Group, along with China reporters like Zeyi Yang and Jiang Jiang, as well as Chinese researchers working for foreign publications. They shared tips and tools with me that they have found helpful in their work.
Here are the two questions I asked them:
What do you think are the 3 most important things to be aware of as a China watcher in 2023?
Can you also share 3 tools you normally use while doing your job? (would be good to include scenarios/examples!)
Due to the limited space, I can’t share all of their answers, but please join us for a live discussion on June 13 (Tuesday) 8AM EST/8PM CST/2PM CET. Set a reminder here on Twitter or add a one-hour slot to your calendar!
✨First off, I want to highlight answers from Chinese researchers at foreign publications who request to remain anonymous; they are an integral part of their respective newsrooms and contribute significantly to the English world's coverage of China. (Chinese nationals can only work in supporting roles at foreign news outlets with few exceptions such as at Reuters/Bloomberg.)
Researcher at an international news organization
Staffer at a foreign media outlet in Beijing:
@WallStTV broadcast journalist’s 3 tips:
Lizzi’s recommended tools:
Manya Koetse, founder of What’s on Weibo’s 3 tips:
Manya’s recommended tools:
’s 3 tips:
Jiang’s recommended tools:
Zeyi Yang, China tech reporter’s 3 tips:
Zeyi’s recommended tools:
, CEO of ’s 3 Tips:
Robert’s recommended tools:
Zak Dychtwald, founder of Young China Group’s 3 tips:
Zak’s recommended tools:
As a translator-turned-journalist, I aim to ensure the accuracy of communication between China and the English-speaking world throughout my career. Please support my work by considering making a pledge.