Global Business Journalism Lecture Series gives the world a taste of the Tsinghua program's dynamism
By BISMA AHMAD
Global Business Journalism reporter
Professor Rick Dunham came up with the idea of the Global Business Journalism Lecture Series in the early weeks of the coronavirus pandemic in order to bring the Tsinghua University program to the world.
“An innovation born out of necessity,” he calls the diverse series of 16 speeches on topics ranging from journalism skills to international public policy issues.
With the Tsinghua campus shuttered following the COVID-19 outbreak in Wuhan, Professor Dunham, the Global Business Journalism master’s program co-director, created a community-building initiative to bring together
Tsinghua students who were stranded in their home cities, program alumni and prospective students. The free lectures helped students and alumni improve their journalism skills, from data research to investigative reporting, and keep up with the most important news stories around the world, from the economic devastation wrought by the coronavirus to America’s reckoning with racism following the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis.
Professor Dunham said he sought a diversity of voices from different backgrounds and perspectives, with a special emphasis on influential women in academia, business and journalism. Among the renowned journalists who participated in the series were Lise Olsen, Rochelle Riley, Jin Ding, Jonathan D. Salant, David Paulk and Sharon Jayson. Prominent
academics included ethics scholar Shakuntala Rao and public-diplomacy expert Nancy Snow. Kristiina Helenius and Mark Hamrick were among the eminent economic analysts who discussed the latest business trends from around the world.
The Global Business Journalism Lecture Series was launched in March, before the coronavirus outbreak became a global pandemic. It was on the cutting edge of a shift of university programs from classrooms to remote learning platforms. Professor Dunham said the lecture series allowed the Global Business Journalism Program to tap into the expertise of experts around the world without the cost and logistical difficulties of bringing them to the Tsinghua campus.