China Vitae FAQ

What is China Vitae?

China Vitae's purpose is to advance the understanding of Chinese politics worldwide among academic institutions, governments, media organizations, businesses, and others interested in China's development. The site provides vast amounts of information with over 5000 biographies of China's current political elite and research tools designed to comb the site's information for points of commonality and points of difference between Chinese leaders as well as between coalitions, groups, and factions.

How do I use China Vitae?

On the home page of the site you will see recent updates to the three primary sections of China Vitae: Biographies, VIP Appearances, and New Appointments.

You can click links from the home page that interest you or use the global search function found on the upper right corner of the web site.

For more focused research, navigate to the Search section of the site where you can search China Vitae's content by name, by institution, by location, or by role.

  1. The most important of the search engines finds biographies by name, either through a direct search for specific names or by browsing an alphabetical list of all names on the site.
  2. The institution search engine performs a similar function for institutions, either searching directly by name of the institution or indirectly by category, such as financial institutions.
  3. The location search engine finds provinces, counties, and cities in a database containing many thousands of place names.
  4. The role search engine organizes information in the database by role (title) as in governor, mayor, president, secretary. There are many thousand such entries.
  5. The power search engine permits date limited, Boolean searches of combinations of the information described in 1-4 above.
  6. Finally, a comparison search engine permits searches in 1-5 above to be compared for commonality. Thus, the comparison engine, among other capabilities, can determine whether a group of officials went to school together, studied together, or worked together.

What is the Research Library?

The Research Library contains searchable lists of members of major organizations, such as CPC Central Committees, the Central Military Commissions, the State Council, and other important party and government organizations. In most cases, the lists date back to the 1950s.

What are VIP Appearances?

This searchable catalogue tracks the daily appearances and travel of China's most important officials, creating an entry for each event, including the nature of the event, the names of other officials involved, the topic, the date, and the location.

What are New Appointments?

This database lists new appointments, as announced by the Chinese government, from the highest level down to the level of vice-minister, vice-mayor, deputy party secretary, and their equivalents in other party, government and business organizations.

What is the China Vitae Newsletter? How often is it published? Is it free?

Our Newsletter monitors recent developments in politics and government. On Monday morning each week, subscribers to this free online publication receive new and updated biographies, the latest VIP activities, and other announcements.

To see the current issue and subscribe for free, click here.

Does China Vitae have a Twitter?

Yes. You can follow us @ChinaVitae.

Every morning, our staff combs through official Chinese publications online for the latest news concerning top-level Chinese officials, such as meetings with foreign dignitaries (in China or abroad), announcements from CPC Party and government institutions, and new appointments. We tweet this information throughout the day.

To follow us on Twiiter, click here.

What sources does China Vitae use?

Information is culled regularly from official government and Party sources, such as web sites of cities, provinces, ministries, large corporations, the military, and other central organizations. Most of these sources are available only in Chinese. VIP Appearances and New Appointments information is drawn from the daily Chinese press. Experience since China Vitae's inception in 2002 has shown that official government sources are very accurate. There are occasional omissions but few if any commissions. As a test, our hundreds of thousands of users are encouraged to notify China Vitae whenever errors are found and corrections need to be made. Over our 12 years of operation, notifications have remained at a consistently low level.

David Gries, Chair, Board of Directors: Executive Director, China Vitae; Board of Directors, Washington Institute of Foreign Affairs; former officer in American embassies in Singapore, Hong Kong, Tokyo, and Beijing; former Vice-Chair, National Intelligence Council, CIA; former Adjunct Professor of International Relations, Georgetown University
Susan Gries, Secretary: Instructor, Clemente Program, Bard College; Founding Executive Director and Member, Board of Directors, Thornton Wilder Society; Founding faculty, University High School, San Francisco; freelance editor
Nancy Milburn, Treasurer: Partner, Burnham & Associates; President, Financial Systems Consultants, Inc.; Finance Officer, Dtech Labs, Inc.
Ireneo Albano: Managing Partner,; internet technology consultant; former CEO, esynch media; former Managing Editor, PC Magazine; former Managing Editor,
Mary Brown Bullock: Trustee, The Asia Foundation; President Emeritus, Agnes Scott College; Public Policy Fellow, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars; Chair, China Medical Board; Director, National Committee on U.S.-China Relations; former Director, Asia Program, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars
Joseph Fewsmith: Professor of International Relations and Political Science and Director, East Asian Studies Program, Boston University; Research Associate, John King Fairbanks Center for East Asian Studies, Harvard University and the Frederick S. Pardee Center for the Study of the Longer-Range Future, Boston University
Peter Gries: Associate Professor of Political Science, University of Oklahoma; Harold J. & Ruth Newman Chair in US-China Issues and Director of the Institute for U.S.-China Issues, University of Oklahoma; former Assistant Professor of Political Science, University of Colorado; former Founder and Director, Sino-American Security Dialogue
Robert Keatley: Editor, Hong Kong Journal; former lecturer, Tsinghua University School of Journalism, Beijing, China; former Editor, South China Morning Post, Asian Wall Street Journal and European Wall Street Journal; former staff writer, The Wall Street Journal
Alice Lyman Miller: Visiting Associate Professor, Stanford University; Research Fellow, The Hoover Institution; Senior Lecturer, U.S. Naval Postgraduate School; Editor, China Leadership Monitor; former Associate Professor and Director, China Studies, the Johns Hopkins School for Advanced International Studies
James Mulvenon: Deputy Director, Advanced Analysis, Defense Group, Inc.; staff member, US-China Economic and Security Review Commission; former Senior Political Scientist, Rand Corporation; founding member, Cyber Conflict Studies Association; member, National Committee for U.S.-China Relations and Association for Asian Studies
J. Stapleton Roy: Director, Kissinger Institute on China and the United States; former U.S. ambassador to China, Indonesia, and Singapore; Board of Directors, Conoco Phillips and Freeport McMoran Copper & Gold; Trustee, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
David Shambaugh: Professor of Political Science and International Affairs, George Washington University; Director, China Policy Program, the Elliott School of International Affairs; former Lecturer, School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London; former Editor, China Quarterly; former fellow, The Brookings Institution
Nancy Bernkopf Tucker: Professor of History, Georgetown University; former Deputy Assistant Director of National Intelligence; former official, Office of Chinese Affairs, Department of State and U.S. Embassy, Beijing; former member, Board of Directors, Institute for the Study of Diplomacy and National Committee for U.S.-China Relations
Board of Directors