David Rennie (China)

David Rennie (China)

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Beijing bureau chief and Chaguan columnist, The Economist  

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David has worked for the Economist for over a decade, living around the world and gaining a uniquely international perspective on global issues. Now based in China as the Beijing bureau chief, he explores China’s growing geopolitical might and its relationship with the rest of the world. He also draws on his time in the US and the UK to observe patterns in politics and society leading to the rise of populism and events such as Brexit and the election of Donald Trump.


David Rennie is the Beijing bureau chief at The Economist and the author of their China column, Cahuan. He has worked in positions worldwide for the publication, now residing in China. Starting out in Brussels as the European Union correspondent and the Charlemagne columnist, he then returned to London where he wrote the Bagehot column and served as the British political editor. He also worked in Washington DC as the Lexington columnist and Washington bureau chief in the lead up to Trump’s presidency. 

Prior to working at The Economist, David was on the foreign staff of the Daily Telegraph, with postings in Sydney, Beijing, Washington DC and Brussels. He also worked as contributing editor of Spectator magazine. 

One of few western journalists based in Beijing, David is a leading voice on China’s rise and its relationship with the rest of the world, especially the US and the West. He looks at their foreign policy and the rising trade and security tensions, including exploring what lies behind the Belt and Road Initiative. He also covers more delicate topics, risking his safety to speak about the repression of free speech and human rights. Having worked across four continents and interviewed world leaders, including Donald Trump, he is also in a unique position to explore global issues such as the rise of nationalism and populism. From his international perspective, he considers the links between Brexit, the US elections, and the growing might of China, observing the effects on politics and society.

Away from his journalistic work, David has lectured on geopolitics and EU affairs at universities all around the world. He is also a frequent guest on radio and television news shows, including as a regular contributing panellist on 1A, NPR’s daily news talk programme.

David was awarded the Osborn Elliott Prize for Excellence in Journalism on Asia for his coverage of China.


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