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November newsletter: An unforgettable month – 4 field trips, 2 parties and our biggest annual event

Updated: May 30


The Global Business Journalism program at Tsinghua School of Journalism and Communication is the top English language business journalism program in China.

GLOBAL BUSINESS JOURNALISM NEWSLETTER

November 2023


By VICKI CHALERMLAPVORABOON

Global Business Journalism reporter


Three months into the semester, we know that one thing has changed for sure: the weather. The long, global-warming-induced summer was followed by a sudden drop in temperature, and the piercing cold winds gusting in from Siberia. After a very brief Beijing autumn, winter came.


But the Global Business Journalism community remains the same: consistently warm. The only change is that it has been more than active this month!


Multimedia Reporting is a core course in the Global Business Journalism program at Tsinghua University.
Professor Rick Dunham's Multimedia Reporting course visited the offices of Beijing Review at the China International Communications Group on Nov. 24. (Beijing Review photo)

1. ONE BIG THING: GBJ STUDENTS EXPLORE THREE OF CHINA'S LEADING MEDIA COMPANIES, ONE EMBASSY


Students had the opportunity to visit four major media companies’ offices in Beijing during November – Caixin Media, Beijing Review and leading tech company, Tencent.


During the media compnay visits, GBJers learned the processes of curating news, tips on investigative journalism, insights on China’s news consumption trends, and content creation. In Tencent, new technological developments such as ChatGPT bot like Hunyuan and self-driving cars, were also introduced to support the convenience of university students and content creators.


The power of staying neutral and taking extra steps to double check and report fact-based information, when it comes to reporting sensitive matters, were also emphasized during a visit to the Embassy of Israel in Beijing.


2. "HOT TOPICS" GUEST LECTURERS OFFER INSIGHT ON TV REPORTING, COMBATING DISINFORMATION


Students in Professor Rick Dunham’s Hot Topics courseheard from important guest lecturers in November including Xu Qinduo (top right photo), the prominent host of CGTN’s prime time “Dialogue” news program, Mika Hentunen (middle right), Asia correspondent for YLE Finnish Broadcasting, and Patrick Butler (bottom right), Senior Vice President for Content and Community at the International Center for Journalists in Washington. All of these prominent journalism figures visited Tsinghua University to share their experiences of working on important journalism and public policy issues.


Butler shared tips on how to tackle disinformation, especially during the AI and digital-driven era, in a session on Nov. 30. Xu shared insights on the political calculus complicating the relationship among China, the United States and Europe. Hentunen discussed major stories he had covered in his career, from the September 11 terrorist attacks in 2001 to Finland joining NATO in 2023. During his Nov. 23 lecture, he also shared tips and tools to work in front of cameras for live reporting.


During his guest lecture, Xu talked about the recent thaw in the Sino-U.S. relationship following the meeting between Chinese President Xi Jinping and his American counterpart, Joe Biden, on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation nations' summit in San Francisco on Nov. 15.


Both leaders struck a series of agreements, including restarting military cooperation and curbing the flow of fentanyl into the United States.


“That [meeting] is the focus of the entire global media because most countries are expecting a stable relationship between China and the U.S., which is the anchor, in my opinion, of the global situation,” Xu told students in the "Hot Topics" course of the Global Business Journalism program.



Key takeaways from all of the speakers: Succeeding in the journalism world not only comes from hard work and dedication but also a forever-fueled passion to bring the truth to your audience.

 

3. MARILYN GEEWAX RETURNS TO GIVE PODCASTING ADVICE TO GLOBAL BUSINESS JOURNALISM STUDENTS


A memorable podcast is a combination of strong reporting, storytelling skill and fairness, former National Public Radio business editor Marilyn Geewax told Global Business Journalism students.


"We're supposed to tell the truth and tell it in an even-handed way," Geewax said in a Zoom session with students in GBJ's Multimedia Reporting course.


Geewax, a visiting professor in the GBJ program in 2019 and 2021, offered podcasting and audio journalism advice to an eager group of Tsinghua journalism students. She told the students that a good podcast is structured differently than a typical radio report.


"You're trying to take your listeners on a journey," she said. "Create a logical structure: a beginning, a middle and an end. Don't cram everything into the first sentence or people will stop listening in a minute or two."


Geewax was an editor on a podcast produced by Atlanta, Georgia, public broadcaster WABE that received the top American award for radio journalism.

 

4. PROFESSOR RICK DUNHAM DISCUSSES GAZA ON "THE POINT"


Professor Rick Dunham is a regular commentator for global television, radio and print outlets on international hot topics. This month, he discussed topics as diverse as the summit meeting between Chinese President Xi Jinping and American President Joe Biden, the death of former U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, and the Israel-Hamas war. His appearance on CGTN’s “The Point with Liu Xin" came as China led a push at the United Nations for a cease fire resolution.


Watch the full video here!


 

5. THE GBJ FAMILY CELEBRATES ITS FIRST HALLOWEEN SINCE THE COVID PANDEMIC

The GBJ Halloween Party was held at the Tsinghua University Future Media Lab.
A fun time was had by all at Global Business Journalism's spook-tacular Halloween party.
The Global Business Journalism Halloween party at Tsinghua University was the first since the COVID-19 pandemic.
Best costume award winners at the GBJ Halloween celebration.

The Global Business Journalism program held a Halloween party on Oct. 30 in the Tsinghua Future Media Lab. Beloved GBJ professors and international students from the Nuclear Engineering program joined more than a dozen current GBJ students for the biggest party so far this year.


Celebrants were dressed creatively in costumes including a great pumpkin, witches, the grim reaper, a big bunny, Hermione Granger from Harry Potter, Wednesday Addams from the Addams Family and Luigi from the Super Mario game series. Alicia Zeng, a second-year student from the United States, was the mistress of ceremonies, presiding over holiday-themed games and celebratory speeches.


In addition to the Futgure Media Lab event, GBJ students helped decorate the journalism school office in orange and black and baked Halloween cookies for professors and supervisors.


All in all, it was a Spook-a-licious Halloween.


 

6. A (SUCCESSFUL) SURPRISE BIRTHDAY PARTY FOR PROFESSOR RICK DUNHAM


Rick Dunham is co-director of the Global Business Journalism program at Tsinghua University.
Professor Dunham with his birthday loot.

GBJ students gathered to surprise Professor Rick Dunham on his birthday. A scrumptious cake, bouquets of flowers, a heart-felt birthday card and a practical gift was served. Students also gave their professor a Tsinghua University stuffed bear and a new black backpack to replace his three-decade-old red backpack, which has been threadbare for several years.


Thanks to Professor Dunham for continually sharing your knowledge and your passion to teach young journalists the beauty of being content creators and how to become great writers.


 

7. THIS MONTH'S "SPECIAL SCOOP": MEET TUDOR FINNERAN, A WRITER AND GLOBAL TRAVELER FROM ENGLAND


We are proud to introduce another issue of "GBJ Special Scoop," a monthly feature dedicated to in-depth profiles of Global Business Journalism students and (coming soon!) professors. Behind their similar ambitions to become leaders in the future media world, our students have different stories to share.


For this scoop, we sat down with Tudor Finneran, an international student from England. Tudor, who passionately loves freshly baked goods and cafés, shares his childhood story of growing up in a small town in England where deer and horses aren’t afraid to greet humans. In an interview, he also shares his discovery of becoming a full-time writer.


Learn more about his story here!


 

Wang Feng is a professor in the Global Business Journalism program at Tsinghua University in Beijing.
Global Business Journalism professor Wang Feng speaks remotely from Hong Kong during the Tsinghua Business Journalism Forum. (TSJC photo)

8. GBJ CO-HOSTS DEBATE ON ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE REVOLUTION AT THE ANNUAL TSINGHUA BUSINESS JOURNALISM FORUM


There's a reason we delayed publication of the November newsletter for a few days. We didn't want you to miss news about the biggest annual event on the Global Business Journalism events calendar: the Tsinghua Business Journalism Forum.


The forum, co-sponsored by GBJ, the Tsinghua School of Journalism and Communication, and the Institute for Global Development at Tsinghua University, was held on Dec. 1 at the Tsinghua University Main Building and the Bloomberg News Beijing bureau offices.


The forum was hosted by Professor Hang Min, co-director of the Global Business Journalism Forum. GBJ professors Lee Miller, Wang Feng and Rick Dunham were among the featured speakers. Former GBJ professors Ken Moritsugu of the Associated Press and Pam Tobey of Beijing Review also discussed the impact of artificial intelligence on their work as reporters and graphic artists.


Professor Miller, an editor-at-large at Bloomberg News, emphasized that “AI is not going to replace the power of humans.” Professor Dunham stressed the importance of "training" and controlling data sets for AI to enhance accuracy and fact-based content.


The conference included speeches by nearly a dozen journalism professionals. Zhao Jian, president of the China Economic Media Association, praised the "openness, pragmatism and professionalism" of Tsinghua University's financial news education programs, which include Global Business Journalism.

 
Global Business Journalism professors Rick Dunham, Lee Miller and Min Hang were among the speakers at the AI conference.
Journalism and communication professors from across Asia descending on the Tsinghua campus for a conference of two of the leading Asian communication research organizations. (TSJC photo)

9. TSINGHUA J-SCHOOL PROFESSORS HOST, ATTEND ACADEMIC CONFERENCES AROUND THE WORLD


Tsinghua journalism school professors brought the world to Tsinghua and represented Tsinghua around the world over the past month.


The Tsinghua School of Journalism and Communication hosted a joint meeting of the Asia-Pacific Communication Alliance and the Asian Network for Public Opinion Research from Nov. 3–6. GBJ co-directors Hang Min and Rick Dunham and professor Lee Miller were among the 30 prominent scholars making presentations at the conference, which focused on "Communication Studies in the Age of AI." Speakers came from 17 countries and regions in Asia, Europe and the Americas.


"We represent diverse perspectives and research traditions, and we are firmly committed to fostering meaningful dialogue within our discipline," said Tsinghua professor Chen Changfeng, preisdent of the Asia-Pacific Communication Alliance.


 
Kuang Kai is a professor in the Global Business Journalism program at Tsinghua University.
Kuang Kai at the Global Development and Health Communication Forum in Beijing.
Kuang Kai is a professor in the Global Business Journalism program at Tsinghua University.
Kuang Kai with fellow academics from around the world at the NCA convention in suburban Washington.

Professor Kuang Kai was a star on two continents, appearing at a health communication conference in China and another in National Harbor, Maryland.


Professor Kuang attended the second Global Development and Health Communication Forum (in collaboration with the Gates Foundation) and the Asia-Pacific Communication Alliance Annual Conference (in collaboration with the Asian Network for Public Opinion Research) in Beijing. She then traveled to the United States for the National Communication Association's 109th annual convention, held just outside of Washington, D.C.


Her schedule of travel and speeches was exhausting, "but every minute was worth it," Professor Kuang said.

 
The Global Business Journalism program at Tsinghua University in Beijing is the top English language business journalism program in China.

Share your GBJ stories with us. We'll include as many as possible in future newsletters. Contact us at GBJprogram@gmail.com or tsjcws@mail.tsinghua.edu.cn.


That's it for the slightly delayed November GBJ newsletter. We'll be back before New Year's with more news, notes and fun items from our global GBJ community.


If you want to be the first to read each GBJ newsletter, subscribe here and receive an email notification when a new newsletter is published.

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