The China Development Brief is a Chinese-language online and print publication that has more than 47,000 subscribers to its online newsletter and 5,000 to its print issues. Until recently, the articles have only been in Chinese. Under the leadership of Shawn Shieh, there is now an English version of the CDB. The editorial team selects a set of articles each month and they are then translated by volunteers. The English version is a project of the Beijing Civil Society Development Research Center (publisher of the Chinese-language CDB).
This resource is welcomed by many international philanthropy practioners. Many of us know that China’s civil society sector is developing at an amazing pace. Unfortunately, for non-Chinese speaking folks, they are out in the dark. This resource provides a glimpse into the sector.
What is interesting for me is that the editorial board selects the articles to be translated so we are also looking at the sector through their lens. Will they select articles that are appealing to the west? Articles that gently guide the movement in a particular way? Or, will the articles represent what the philanthropy practioners inside China deem important?
The November issue includes the following articles:
“An Interview with Lu Zhao, founder of Nonprofit Incubator (NPI)” looks at the man behind one of the fastest-growing, best-connected, and influential NGOs in China.
“New Frontiers In China’s Third Sector Development: Strategies for Effective Advocacy” provides some specific recommendations for international funders and NGOs interested in strengthening issue advocacy networks that would involve Chinese NGOs in playing a larger role in shaping policy.
“The China Women’s Network against AIDS, Between Donors and the Grassroots” provides a fascinating look into the inner workings of a recently-established national grassroots network, Women Network Against AIDS (WNAC).
“An Emerging Civil Society: The Impact of the 2008 Sichuan Earthquake on Grassroots Civic Associations in China” discusses how the earthquake energized what was a relatively quiescent civil society.