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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For China, the Olympics are more than a game

China's government sees winning gold medals as a key affirmation of the country's worth. Athletes who don't come first can get a frosty reception.
Posted In: London Olympics, Olympics 2012, China
0

India more tolerant of power losses than China would be

Indian electricity bosses are less accountable than their Chinese counterparts even though India is a democracy and China a one-party state.
Posted In: India, China, electricity
1

In China, thousands protest against pollution

Weekend protests about waste from a paper mill near Shanghai are the latest sign of rising public anger over environmental pollution.
Posted In: China, air pollution, China's Environment
0

China offers $20 billion in aid to Africa

China held a forum with African leaders today, offering $20 billion in loans to countries throughout the continent over the next three years. The pledge almost doubles China's previous aid to Africa, strengthening a relationship that has attracted a lot of criticism from the West.
Posted In: China, Africa, foreign aid
1

Rising wages in China could be good news for U.S.

Wages rose 13 percent for Chinese urban households so far this year and the boost in buying power is good for businesses, including American ones.
Posted In: China, import export
0

China braces for slower GDP growth

For the past few years, China has had much higher economic growth rates than we're seeing in the U.S. But when China releases its latest GDP figures tomorrow, forecasters are expecting the worst growth in three years.
Posted In: China's Economy, China, steel, Gross Domestic Product (GDP)
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The Street of Eternal Happiness: The Migrant

Meet Zhao Silin: Migrant, factory worker, mother, and owner of a tiny flower shop on Changle Road in Shanghai, otherwise known as The Street of Eternal Happiness.
Posted In: Shanghai, China
5

The Street of Eternal Happiness: The Tailor

Meet Master Chu Hongsheng on the first stop of our year-long series profiling the people who make their living on Changle Road, or the Street of Eternal Happiness, which bisects Shanghai.
Posted In: Shanghai, qipoa, clothes, dress, China
0

China to ask for environmental funding at Rio summit

Next week world leaders will meet for the U.N. Conference on Sustainable Development to figure out how to improve the well-being of people around the world without wrecking the planet in the process.
Posted In: China, renewable energy, United Nations
0

Exports in China double market expectations

Amidst the slew of gloomy economic indicators from China over the weekend there was one bright spot: May's overseas shipments from China are up more than 15 percent over last year.
Posted In: China, export, import export

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