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[ecrea] CJC CFP: China's Globalizing Internet

Tue May 01 13:02:25 GMT 2018

*Special Issue of Chinese Journal of Communication*


*China’s Globalizing Internet: Origins, Trajectories, and Ramifications*

*/Submission deadline: December 31, 2018/*

*Guest Editors: *

Prof. Yu HONG (Ph.D., College of Media and International Culture, Zhejiang University, China)

Prof. Eric HARWIT (Ph.D., Asian Studies, University of Hawaii, USA)

*The general aims and scope of this special issue: ***

It is well known that the Chinese state is adept at domesticating the Internet as a global medium into the so-called Chinese Internet. While acknowledging this Chinese particularity, we see the Chinese Internet not so much as a singular space as an ensemble of ownership, policies, laws, and interests that intersect with pre-existing global elements and, increasingly, with deepening globalizing imperatives. Thus, this special issue aims to develop “China’s globalizing Internet” as a conceptual/analytical device, to complicate the apparently unambiguous historical relationship between China and the Internet, to assess global interlinks and their ramifications on China’s cyberspace and digitalization, and, just as important, to follow the Internet’s ongoing, complex interweaving with the process of Chinese-style globalization in the so-called post-American world.

China’s globalizing Internet has raised several conundrums: first, with the world’s largest geo-linguistic and national cyberspace, it is dominated by corporate players and funded by transnational capital; second, although guarded by the Great Firewall and massaged by censorship, a multitude of cyber businesses and communities have blossomed within a largely decentralized milieu; third, having expanded thanks to insatiable domestic demand, Chinese cyber giants are keen to explore extra-territorial market spaces, seeking out opportunities from the government’s One Belt One Road Initiative; lastly, the state has set out to re-regulate the Internet as the network becomes ubiquitous during the web-oriented digital transformation of China. Such a state-centric Internet governance model, however, is likely to affect China’s globalizing Internet in a transnational context, apart from the fact that the Chinese state is taking an active interest in global Internet governance.

To date, policy and academic communities have narrowly conceptualized the Internet as a tool used either by the state or by society, while assuming the Chinese Internet to be a “giant cage,” a counterpoint to the “free, neutral, and borderless” global Internet. But with the expansion of the Chinese Internet beyond the mainland, such an approach fails to address the complex processes and dynamics of what we see as China’s globalizing Internet. In light of the complexities the Chinese Internet manifests, and in view of China’s rising influence over global digital development, it is time to re-examine the origins, trajectories, andramificationsof the Chinese Internet in relation to the global Internet, to account for not only differences between the two but also the points of intersection. Ultimately, on what terms, and on whose behalf, has China’s globalizing Internet been linked with the political economy of the global Internet?

In order to start filling the gap, this special issue aims to map out, explain, and theorize China’s globalizing Internet, broadly defined. We encourage scholars to delve more deeply into intersecting dynamics of China’s globalizing Internet, which include but are not limited to states and capital, subnational and transnational processes, interstate relations and social formation, master narratives and social imaginations. In particular, we welcome history- and theory-informed empirical studies that examine the policy, politics, and political economy of China’s globalizing Internet and its implications. We also welcome theoretical interventions that move beyond the increasingly inconsistent either-or, domestic versus global distinction that has defined the Chinese Internet research.

Specifically, we invite contributions including but not limited to the following questions:

·What roles have subnational and transnational actors played in shaping Chinese Internet development?

·To what extent has global hegemonic thinking influenced policy and social imagination of the Internet in China?

·How does the Chinese Internet facilitate transnational social formation, including but not limited to class formation?

·How does the rise of internationally financed cyber giants alter or sustain power relations in China’s state-led digital capitalism? How do cyber elites and Internet giants use their influence to push for change, and in what direction?

·How does the state contend, collaborate, and overlap with transnational and private capital in influencing and controlling cyberspace and digitalization?

·Howdo globalizing cyber businesses, such as e-commerce and online finance, affect digital practices and social-cultural formation?

·How do different social classes, including peasant and worker communities, negotiate the networked everyday life in a transnational milieu?

·How do Chinese laws, policies, and governing practices affect or become affected by the globalizing Internet?

·How do states and Internet-related companies interact under the auspices of building a networked “community of common destiny”?

·What are the geopolitical-economic dynamics of China’s digital globalization under the auspices of One Belt One Road?

All manuscripts should be submitted by *December 31, 2018*. All submitted manuscripts are subject to rigorous blind peer-review process. All accepted manuscripts will be published online first. The planned printed publication date is an issue of CJC in 2020. Submissions should conform to the editorial guidelines of the Chinese Journal of Communication found at under “Instructions for Authors.” 

Papers for consideration in this special issue should be submitted online and should indicate they are intended for inclusion in the special issue. For inquires, contact Yu Hong at (hong1 /at/ Eric Harwit at (harwit /at/

洪宇 Yu Hong <> (PhD, U of Illinois)
Author of Networking China <>
College of Media and International Culture
Zhejiang U <>, China

(hong1 /at/ <mailto:(hong1 /at/> [my gmail inbox is almost full]

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