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Faculty Q&A: Chiang Jiang says GBJ is "not only an academic success, but also a cultural success"

Chang Jiang: "Most teachers in GBJ have rich media experience."

Capsule Bio

Chang Jiang is an associate professor at Tsinghua University. He graduated from Peking University in 2008 and then earned a joint doctorate in communication from Tsinghua University and Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois, in the United States.

In 2015, he began his post-doctoral studies in the Department of Sociology at the University of Geneva and graduated successfully one year later.

Professor Chang returned to Tsinghua University in 2017 and created a film production course for Global Business Journalism students. He also is a supervisor of Global Business Journalism students, working with students from the Netherlands and Canada.

This interview was conducted by Song Xiaoling, Mo Jianan, He Yi and Gao Beibei.


Q: How does the GBJ program benefit international students?

A: Global Business Journalism provides is a great opportunity for foreign students to understand the development and current situation of China. Many of them will work for the media in the future, especially for international mainstream media. The program can help them become the journalists who understand China deeply.

Q: What makes Global Business Journalism different than other programs in China and around the world?

A: GBJ has a distinct financial emphasis. There is close cooperation between GBJ and Bloomberg, which is the top financial news agency in the world. The cooperation can make GBJ financial courses more professional and higher quality.

The program can train students in advanced journalism skills. Most teachers in GBJ have rich media experience. Professor Rick Dunham, for example, has 35 years of experience as an American reporter, editor and Washington bureau chief. Their participation is definitely beneficial to training the student’s ability in business news.

All in all, GBJ contributes to developing outstanding journalists who have the ability to report on Chinese affairs in English for international mainstream media. It is obvious that the effective combination of financial training, business news practice, and Chinese conditions is conducive to such development.

Q: What are the benefits of multicultural experience for Chinese students and international students?

A: First, the multicultural experience in GBJ helps the students to develop their multicultural communication skills, which are core skills in the age of globalization. Especially for the students who major in journalism and communication, it will be a fatal flaw if they lack the abilities to respect and understand other cultures. What GBJ provides is a multicultural communication platform. Students often talk about interesting topics, which usually reflect cultural differences.

From this perspective, GBJ is not only an academic program but also an important platform which develops the students’ communication skills with people from different cultures. Such multicultural experience can eliminate some misunderstanding and prejudice of students from diverse cultural backgrounds. Living in China for several years, the foreign students get a better and deeper understanding of China, including the current situation, history and differences.

To summarize, GBJ is a program promoting understanding between people from different cultures. It is not only an academic and educational success, but also a cultural success.

Q: How does GBJ make students better able to adapt to the global economic environment?

In the field of international financial news production, whether in China or other countries, the level of professionalism is often inadequate. What GBJ is trying to do is to cultivate talents systematically in the field of financial news production.

During the U.S.-China trade war, both the Chinese and American media are obviously emotional. What's more, when the debate is really going on, there are few journalists who are particularly familiar with both the U.S. economy and the Chinese economy. Therefore, it’s a good time for the program. It tells the students that economic issues are sometimes not just economic issues, but may involve many complex cultural and political issues.

Students from Western countries come to China to study finance and economics through the GBJ program, where they not only learn professional knowledge, but also acquire a kind of cultural and political understanding. In the long run, this is conducive to realizing the vision of mutual understanding, interdependence and common development among economies.

Q: Is there any room for growth in the Global Business Journalism program?

GBJ still has some areas for improvement. In terms of curriculum design and management, it may be possible to learn more from the mature European and American business journalism programs which are similar to GBJ to reduce the anxiety some foreign students have studying in a different culture. In this way, these students can better integrate into the Chinese environment during their studies.

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