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Financial Journalism MA students visit Shanghai for annual summer school

Students visited leading media organisations as part of a five-day trip to China

by Ed Grover (Senior Communications Officer)

Students on the Financial Journalism MA at City University London have visited China’s largest city and financial capital, Shanghai, for the first leg of the course’s annual Marjorie Deane Summer School.

The group of 13 trainee journalists spent five days visiting major news organisations, speaking with leading journalists, visiting China’s largest company – e-commerce giant Alibaba – and hearing from academics at Fudan University.

Sponsored by the Marjorie Deane Financial Journalism Foundation, the trip is one of the highlights of the Masters programme. It is followed by a visit to New York in June, where students will meet with the heads of major news organisations and study at New York University. Through the generosity of the foundation, travel and hotel expenses in both centres are fully funded.

“This is a key part of our MA in Financial Journalism,” said Professor Steve Schifferes, Director of the course. “It is vital that all financial journalists understand the momentous transformations that are taking place in the world’s second largest economy.”

View a gallery of photos taken by the students during their trip to Shanghai:

During the China trip, students blogged about their experiences.

Takahiro Hasegawa said: “This study trip is providing us with a precious opportunity to meet and discuss with a variety of experts in Shanghai. Through visits to local media organisation and discussions with western and local journalists here, I found their activities far more vibrant than I had imagined. I am discovering the depth and complexity of discussions here, through the first-hand learning experience this trip offers.”

Camilla Naschert explained that a visit to Shanghai Media Group had allowed her to find out about how national and international news were covered in the country.

“Among others, we had access to the anchor of one of the main evening business news shows, who offered insights into audience, planning process and priorities of his segment,” she said. “The June referendum is on the radar in China, too. Leaving the EU, he thinks, would marginalize the UK in the world.”

The group also visited the headquarters of Alibaba in the nearby city of Hangzhou, where they learnt about the company’s business strategies and global outlook. On the return to Shanghai, the students enjoyed a stop at the famous Wuzhen water town.

Olie Rahman described his visit to Fudan University, where the students were given an overview of China’s history and rapid growth in recent decades.

He said: “Over lunch we were given a lecture on the challenges facing investors in the young, undeveloped Chinese stock market. Our afternoon was taken up by a tour of the glitzy Shanghai Media Group buildings, where we talked to a number of surprisingly outspoken producers and journalists about the realities of working for a state owned broadcaster.”

To read the students’ blogs about their trip, visit the Department of Journalism’s Facebook page

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