The Great Firewall: How China regulates big tech

Mark Leonard welcomes Angela Zhang to discuss China’s Big Tech regulation

In the past couple of decades, China has produced a multitude of big tech giants. Companies like Alibaba, Tencent, ByteDance and others are well on their way to becoming household names, unique in their ability to rival their American counterparts, such as Amazon, Google, or Microsoft. Still, their relationship with the Chinese state is far from frictionless, as shown by China’s October 2020 tech crackdown, in which they unleased of an array of regulatory measures against big tech firms.

In this week’s episode, Mark Leonard welcomes Angela Zhang, associate professor of law at the University of Hong Kong and director of the Philip K.H. Wong Centre for Chinese Law, to discuss China’s big tech regulation. How is China regulating its big tech firms? What role do these firms play in China’s competition with Europe and the United States? And what are the lessons for Europe’s own attempts at tech regulation?

This episode was recorded on 21 May 2024 and is part of the In:sight China project.


High Wire: How China Regulates Big Tech and Governs Its Economy, by Angela Zhang

Wuhan: How the COVID-19 Outbreak in China Spiraled Out of Control, by Dali L. Yang

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