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Last month President Xi lauded China's achievement of the eradication of poverty, the culmination of a multi-year campaign and billions of dollars. But beyond the propaganda, what has China's "defeat of poverty" meant for China's rural poor?


RAS Beyond City presents Matthew Chitwood as he highlights the good and bad of China's poverty eradication campaign and shares stories of life in an impoverished mountain village in rural Yunnan where he lived for two years to research rural issues and observe the campaign.


As China is rapidly urbanising, no view of its urbanisation journey can really be complete without an understanding of what is happening in its rural counterparts. Join us online as Matthew shares his first-hand account of how the policies are being implemented on-the-ground, how people's lives are changing – for better or for worse – and, importantly, what's next for rural development in China.


Matthew's article on this topic is featured in the 2020 RAS Journal.

About the Speaker:


Matthew Chitwood is a research writer with expertise in economic development and education exchange in China. He recently returned from a two-year fellowship with the Institute of Current World Affairs reporting from an impoverished village in Yunnan province. His work has been published in Foreign Affairs, Foreign Policy, The New Republic and The American Interest and he is currently working on a book based on his fellowship research.


Matthew has worked for study-abroad programs including CET, CIEE, and Where There Be Dragons and also for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the U.S. State Department's Critical Language Scholarship Program. He holds a dual M.A. in China studies and international economics from Johns Hopkins University's School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) and the Hopkins-Nanjing Center, and he is a member of the National Committee on U.S.-China Relations.


Convenor: Parul Rewal, Architect & Urbanist

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