Rob Schmitz is Marketplace’s China correspondent, based in Shanghai.

Schmitz joined Marketplace in 2010. He's covered a range of topics in China, from labor conditions to education to the rise of consumerism. In 2011, he provided Marketplace’s sole coverage from Japan in the days following the earthquake and tsunami, reporting from the hardest-hit areas near the failing Fukushima nuclear power plant. In 2012, he exposed the fabrications in Mike Daisey’s account of Apple's supply chain on This American Life and his report was featured in that show’s much-discussed "Retraction" episode. The work was a finalist for the 2012 Investigative Reporters and Editors award. In 2012, he and Marketplace Education Correspondent Amy Scott won the national Edward R. Murrow award and an award from the Education Writers Association for their investigative series on college agencies that place Chinese students at U.S. universities.

Prior to joining Marketplace, Schmitz was the Los Angeles bureau chief for KQED’s The California Report. He’s also worked as the Orange County reporter for KPCC, and as a reporter for MPR, covering rural Minnesota.

Prior to his radio career, Schmitz lived and worked in China; first as a teacher in the Peace Corps, then as a freelance print and video journalist. His television documentaries about China have appeared on The Learning Channel and the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.

Schmitz has received many honors and awards including: the Overseas Press Club Scholarship (2001); The Minnesota Society of Professional Journalist award (2001); the Scripps Howard Religion Writing Fellowship (2001); the International Reporting Project Fellowship (2002); the National Federation of Community Broadcasters (2002); Golden Mics from the Radio and TV News Association of Southern California (2005 and 2006); the Peninsula Press Club award (2006); the ASU Media Fellowship, (2007); the Abe Fellowship for Journalists, (2009); the Education Writers Association (2011); a national Edward R. Murrow award (2012); finalist, Investigative Reporters and Editors award (2013). In 2011, the Rubin Museum of Art screened a short documentary Schmitz shot in Western China.

Schmitz has a Master’s degree from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Minnesota-Duluth. He speaks Spanish and Mandarin Chinese. He served two years as a Peace Corps volunteer in Zigong, Sichuan Province, China.

A native of Elk River, Minn., Schmitz currently resides in Shanghai, a city that’s far enough away from his hometown to avoid having to watch his favorite football team, the Minnesota Vikings. Sometimes, he says, that’s a good thing. 

Features By Rob Schmitz

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China's economic growth drops to 13-year low

The world's fastest growing economy just posted it's worst growth figures in over a decade. Is it time to be concerned?
Posted In: China, China's Economy, GDP, Gross Domestic Product (GDP)
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Is China's Huawei a threat to our national security?

The Chinese telecommunications equipment company is the largest in the world, but it struggles to gain a foothold in the U.S. Lawmakers say it's a threat to national security.
Posted In: huawei, China
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Dangerous air pollution levels hit Beijing

Air quality in China's capital this weekend was at levels judged hazardous to health. Authorities fear environmental concerns could spark social instability.
Posted In: China, air pollution, Beijing
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Beijing's bad air quality has an economic impact

Air pollution in Beijing over the weekend was 40 times worse than limits set by the World Health Organization and it has economic implications for China
Posted In: air quality, pollution
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The Street of Eternal Happiness: China's 'Mad Men'

In the latest stop on the Street of Eternal Happiness in Shanghai, a profile of an advertising agency's journey through the lucrative and challenging China market.
Posted In: China, advertising, commercials
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Japan's new prime minister faces challenges

Newly-elected Prime Minister Shinzo Abe faces the tasks of reviving Japan's economy and handling strained relations with China.
Posted In: Japan, China, Shinzo Abe, elections
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Leader of China plans economic reforms

China’s new leader Xi Jinping has only been in office a month, but he’s already turning heads.
Posted In: China
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GM eyes Southeast Asia car buyers

Auto giant GM sees a lucrative market among Southeast Asia's growing middle class and plans to tackle Japanese automakers' regional domination.
Posted In: Auto, GM, China
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Adult accessories on the Street of Eternal Happiness

Amid the street's noodle stands, one store dispenses sex aids and advice for shoppers in this conservative culture.
Posted In: sex, China, China's Society
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Suspicion of Chinese intentions could hurt aviation investments

U.S. criticism of Chinese investment in key technology sectors such as aviation could cost the U.S. opportunities, say experts.
Posted In: China, aviation, investment

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