Jasper Becker provides a wealth of insight on the rise of China and the impact this is having on its neighbours and trading partners. His travels to every corner of China and a series of well researched books have made the author a highly sought after speaker.
Entertaining, candid and often irreverent about the realities of China, he is regularly called on to brief economists economists, invest-ment fund managers, diplomats, investors and others about the possibilities and limits to change in. He has been invited to speak in Washington, Los Angeles, London, Singapore, Bangkok and Hong Kong at conferences in security issues, economic macro trends, and increasingly about the future of China in the 21 st century.
More information on past work His research into the burgeoning problems of environmental management, resettlement, urbanisation which has appeared in publications like National Geographic puts a broader and qualitative perspective on China's high growth rates. His range of expertises covers not just the rising urban consumer classes, the state-owned industries, foreign investment and fiscal reform but also less publicised changes to the health and legal systems, the reform of the bureaucracy, and the challenges facing the hundreds of millions of rural poor.
The long term implications of China's population changes and its economy are to be examined in another book, Macro-trends China: 2030 , which will be published in 2005.
Groundbreaking historical research in works like Hungry Ghosts , a set text in many university courses, enable the speaker to put current trends in a wider historical context.
What the Chinese think about their past tell you a lot about how they hope to create their future. Jasper Becker is working on a new book on the rebuilding of Beijing, the largest infrastructure project in the world, a project all about China's fascination with modernity and the reinvention of its identity.
Jasper Becker has worked as a foreign correspondent for 20 years including 14 years based in Beijing and has written four books on the region which have been translated into seven languages. His most recent work is 'The Chinese' - a general portrait of modern China. His latest book is on North Korea and he is currently finishing a history of Peking.
Jasper Becker is currently accredited to The Independent and has contributed features to Vanity Fair, National Geographic, Marie Claire, Travel & Leisure: and political commentaries to the International Herald Tribune, The Spectator, The New Republic, The Christian Science Monitor, The Irish Times, The Asian Wall Street Journal, The Australian Financial Review, The Washington Post, Globe and Mail, Business Week, Prospect Magazine, and Sunday Business. In May 2002, he gave evidence about North Korea at a hearing held by the House of Representatives International Relations Committee
Jasper Becker is frequently interviewed on television and radio on matters relating to China, North Korea, Hong Kong, Tibet and Mongolia. He has appeared in several documentaries on Tiananmen for CBS's Sixty Minutes and Canadian television. In the United States he has appeared on ABC's Nightline discussing North Korea with Josh Gerstein (2002), Nightline with Ted Koppel (1998), Primetime Live with Diane Sawyer (1997) and on Worldnews Tonight with Peter Jennings. He has also frequently been interviewed on CNN programmes, news reports or documentaries by Associated Press Television, Voice of America, and Radio Free Asia. He is often quoted as an analyst in news stories by Reuters TV, BBC World TV's Asia Programme, BBC World Radio especially its programe East Asia Today, occasionally by Sky News and ITN. In addition to taking part in documentaries on China, he has written and presented 30 radio programmes on China, the Soviet Union and Central Asia for the BBC. Other international broadcasters including Deutschewelle, Germany's ARD, Radio France International, Australia's ABC, South Korea's KBS, Ireland's RTE, Swedish Radio use his analysis.
His first book was a travelogue cum political commentary on Mongolia The Lost Country (1992) . His second book Hungry Ghosts (1996) is an award-winning account of the famine kept secret by Mao from 1958 to 1962. The Chinese (2000) was hailed as the best single volume introduction to China and its people. Rogue Regime (2004) is his latest title, focusing on North Korea. He is currently writing a book on Beijing.
Jasper Becker has given talks to the US Council for International Relations, and other venues. He is regularly invited to business conferences to speak on economic and political issues. He is a frequent speaker and lecturer on international affairs. He has adressed audiences at Chatham House, the Pacific Council on International Relations, the World Economic Forum, the House of Representatives Foreign Relations Committtee, and business conferences organized by the Economist Group.
Hungry Ghosts, the first account of China's famine during the period known as the Great Leap Forward (1958-62), won the 4th PIOOM Foundation Award for a work on major human rights abuses. Articles on North Korea won the Kilpatrick Award for Human Rights and Children. Coverage of the Falun Gong crackdown won the Hong Kong Human Rights Press Award.
Until May 2002, he was Beijing Bureau Chief of Hong Kong's English-language South China Morning Post (SCMP). He joined the SCMP in 1995 when the resident reporting staff was down to one and helped raise it to nine including five reporters in Beijing. As a trusted commentator and reporter who won a wide following, his dismissal from the SCMP in 2003 was reported around the world as sign of growing censorship in Hong Kong. In the last two years the paper has seen sales fall by 40 per cent, a once profitable paper go into the red and the sacking of the publisher, editor, deputy editor, features editor, and others in an effort to recover public confidence. .
Jasper Becker started his career in Brussels and worked for the Associated Press in Geneva and Frankfurt. He joined The Guardian and reported from Beijing 1985 to 1989, notably covering the first pro-independence riots in Lhasa, the pro-democracy movement in South Korea, Taiwan's democracy movement and reporting from North Korea, Vietnam, Mongolia and Japan. After the 1989 Tiananmen demonstrations for which the paper nominated him as Foreign Correspondent of the Year, he returned to London. Several years later he left The Guardian and joined the BBC World Service as the Asian Affairs Analyst.
A British citizen, born London 19 May 1956, married with two children aged six and three. After attending Mill Hill School, he obtained a BA degree at Goldsmith's College in the University of London. He also studied at the Ludwig-Maximilians University in Munich and later obtained a post-graduate diploma in modern Chinese from the University of London. In addition to Chinese, he speaks French and German.