If you’re an experienced long-distance traveler, you’ll recognize the symptoms. If you’re not, please read carefully.
Taken by the Expedition 26 crew, this photograph shows two of China’s most populous cities at night. Located in the northern part of the country, Beijing and Tianjin are estimated to house, together, nearly 20 million people, with 12 million in the Beijing metropolitan area and over 7 million in Tianjin.
“The dark regions surrounding the well-lit urban areas are mainly agricultural fields, with wheat and corn being the major crops,” NASA explained. “Beijing is one of the recognized ancient capital cities — and the current capital — of the People’s Republic of China. The regular grid pattern of the city is clearly visible at lower upper right; concentric rings of major roadways around the city center have been added as the metropolitan area has expanded. Tianjin is a major trade center with connection to seaports on the Bohai Gulf. The city was established following the integration of the Grand Canal of China, a major artificial waterway extending from Beijing southwards to Hangzhou.”
The headline writers could have had a field day with this one. A massive biogas facility will turn manure from dairy farms into electricity and fertilizer.
In Shenzhen, an experiment in political reform is in progress (as of Oct 2010) that suggests the Communist party is looking for ways to strengthen local government through non-governmental agencies while retaining authoritarian rule. It is a delicate balancing act.
Quote of the day: “For government, giving up power is a painful process,” said Tan Gang, deputy head of the Communist Party School, the party’s main think tank and training institution, in Shenzhen. “It is a selfish creature.”
Op-Ed Commentary: Chris Devonshire-Ellis
Sept. 27 – China’s rapidly aging population is set to dramatically shrink its workforce and effectively pass the baton to India as the world’s manufacturing hub, according to analysis from Morgan Stanley and the Global Times. China’s one child policy, which has seen it manage its population over the past three decades, is now finally kicking into the work pool and reducing the number of Chinese workers. [ Follow the link for the complete article ]
China’s relationships with its neighbors near and far are evolving into something akin to a three-dimensional chessboard on which their economic and foreign policies are being played out. Link to Article (NYT)
For you i-device (phone/pod/pad) users there’s a news app called China Daily. (with apologies to WebOS/Winmo/Android/Symbian etc. — I don’t know about them.)
As you get in the mindset for a trip to China in May/June 2011, this will give you a sense of issues being discussed in the English-language Chinese press. There are separate sections for business, culture and travel that are interesting too.
Passing on a message from one of our students who visited China last year … including the Great Wall section mentioned in the article.
” Thought you would be interested in reading this. It’s about a US businessman who started a sustainable tourist enterprise in Mutianyu at the base of the Great Wall. If there was a way in, it would be an interesting visit for next year’s crew combined with the Great Wall trip.”
This piece appeared in the New York Times recently. The author reflects upon his visit to Tianjin, which was one of our destinations in last year’s IBR.
OP-ED COLUMNIST: Too Many Hamburgers?
On a visit to China, getting a good look at how the Chinese view us Americans.
Here is an interesting perspective on China from a Chinese national that might provide perspective for some things that you have seen or will see in China. The author of the post is at the China Europe International Business School — we visited this institution in Shanghai a couple of years ago on an IBR.