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

Schmitz has won several awards for his reporting on China, including two national Edward R. Murrow awards, an Education Writers Association award, and his work was a finalist for the 2012 Investigative Reporters and Editors Award. His reporting in Japan from the hardest-hit areas near the failing Fukushima nuclear power plant following the earthquake and tsunami was included in the publication 100 Great Stories, celebrating the centennial of Columbia University’s Journalism School. In 2012, Schmitz exposed the fabrications in Mike Daisey’s account of Apple’s supply chain on This American Life. His report was featured in the show’s “Retraction” episode, the most downloaded episode in the program's 16-year history.

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.

Among the honors Schmitz has received for his work: 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 award (2002); Golden Mic awards 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); finalist, Investigative Reporters and Editors award (2013); two national Edward R. Murrow awards (2012 and 2014). In 2011, the Rubin Museum of Art screened a short documentary Schmitz shot in Tibet.

Schmitz has a Master’s degree from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism and a bachelor’s degree in Spanish from the University of Minnesota-Duluth. He speaks Spanish and Mandarin Chinese. He’s lived in Spain, Australia, and 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. 

 

READ MORE

Features by Rob Schmitz

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

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

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

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

An old friend of the party assesses China's new leaders

Sidney Rittenberg is one of the few Americans to join China's Communist Party. The one-time translator for Mao Tse-tung hopes China's new leaders have the courage to reform.
Posted In: China, Communist Party, Mao

President's visit to Myanmar poses challenge for China

Up to now, the government of Myanmar, also known as Burma, has held a cozy economic relationship with China, but President Obama's visit signals the country is looking to diversify its portfolio.
Posted In: Myanmar, Barack Obama, China

New Chinese leadership's policies may benefit U.S.

As China's new leaders take power, some hope they will move away from running surpluses and building up reserves. Such reforms could benefit China and the U.S.
Posted In: China, Xi Jinping

In China, new leadership but familiar challenges

As Xi Jinping takes the helm of the Communist Party in the world's second largest economy, handling the slowing economy remains priority number one.
Posted In: China, China's Economy, Xi Jinping

China's biggest tourist destination looking forward to conclusion of party congress

Closed tourist sites and enhanced security for China's historic leadership transition means less revenue for Beijing's thriving tourism industry.
Posted In: China, Forbidden City, tourism

China's 'hutong' economics

As China's leaders meet behind closed doors in Beijing's Great Hall of the People, shop owners in the neighborhoods of twisted alleyways known as hutongs share their outlook on their own -- and China's -- economic prospects.
Posted In: China, Beijing, China's Economy, Great Hall of the People

Pages

With Generous Support From...