Dear Readers,

Thank you for opening the ninth edition of China Hands Magazine. We have learned a great deal putting this issue together. We hope you gain as much from reading it as our team of editors, writers, and artists did from creating it.

This spring, we took a closer look at some well-worn narratives of contemporary China. Jake Lengacher offers a comprehensive history of China’s “One Belt, One Road” policy in Central Asia (“The Road Well-Traveled”), while Andrea Moneton, Jaylia Yan, and Lionel Jin offer new perspectives on three familiar topics: pollution (“Gone With the Wind”), political censorship (“The Correspondent’s Dilemma”), and technological innovation (“In Tech, China Marches Forward”). Celine Wang’s coverage of the complex web of political corruption that plagues China’s real estate industry (“Constructing Corruption”) elucidates an oft-cited but poorly understood phenomenon.

This issue also spotlights articles that touch on underappreciated narratives. Aspen Wang’s personal account about the geopolitical significance of China’s relationship with Pakistan (“Planned Comradeship”), Michael Beit’s report on China’s burgeoning green energy industry (“The Spring of Chinese Green Energy”), and Lucas Sin’s critique of the fine dining industry in Hong Kong (“Our City, Our Food?”) all bring to the fore perspectives that readers may encounter for the first time.

Lastly, we hope this issue will afford readers moments of discovery, with Wenbin Gao’s personal account of a civil education initiative in Nanjing (“There Shall Be a University”) and Edward Columbia and Kateryna Bugayevska’s photo essay of the Yi Torch Festival in Liangshan, Sichuan (“Eternal Flame”).

We are proud to present this latest issue of China Hands and we hope you enjoy reading it!

Yours truly,

Alexander Herkert

William Magliocco

Anna Lu

Nicholas Wu

Zishi Li

Editors of China Hands