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

Rob has won several awards for his reporting on China, including two national Edward R. Murrow awards and an Education Writers Association award. His work was also 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, Rob 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, Rob 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, Rob 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 Rob 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 Rob shot in Tibet.

Rob 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., Rob 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

A burst in the Chinese housing market would benefit the U.S.

Some home prices in Shanghai and Beijing are on-par with lofts in Manhattan. We've already seen what a U.S. housing bubble does to the global economy. But what about a Chinese bubble? Rob Schmitz explains.
Posted In: Housing

China cracks down on pirating

For years, U.S. companies have complained the Chinese government looks the other way when vendors pirate American goods. But now, Beijing has unveiled details about a new crackdown on intellectual property theft. Rob Schmitz reports.

Inflation, rising food prices, hit Chinese pocketbooks

Even rice prices have skyrocketed in the China. Economists suspect that the Chinese government is not publicly recognizing inflation to avoid dealing with uneven income distribution in the country.
Posted In: Food

China's reaction to the turmoil on the Korean Peninsula

There is a business angle to the turmoil on the Korean Peninsula, and it involves China, the largest economy in the region. Rob Schmitz explains.

A new Chinese program will allow users to keep lucky cell phone numbers

In China, where many people pay a premium for an auspicious number combination, changing your number can bring bad luck. China's government announced a solution: a pilot project that will allow Chinese to keep their phone numbers even if they change carriers. Rob Schmitz reports.

Is there a housing bubble in China?

Kai Ryssdal talks to Marketplace's Rob Schmitz about whether a housing bubble -- and a housing crisis -- is possible in China.
Posted In: Housing

Commercial Aircraft Corporation will deliver 100 jetliners

A Chinese airplane company has announced it'll deliver 100 orders for commercial jetliners. The Commercial Aircraft Corporation is trying to beat out Boeing's popular 737 and the Airbus A320 for the skyrocketing air travel market in China. Rob Schmitz explains.

G20 summit was not the "battle royale" people expected

Leaders of the world's 20 strongest economies rang the closing bell on their annual summit. For a while, it looked like the main event in South Korea was going to be the currency spat between the U.S. and China, but in the end, the underdog issues won over. Rob Schmitz has more.

China and the U.S. are vying for approval at the G20

World leaders from the 20 richest countries will meet tomorrow in South Korea for the G20 summit. Rob Schmitz is with us from Shanghai to sort it all out.

The Dalai Lama can have a profound impact -- on the economy

Wherever he goes, the Dalai Lama, has an impact. Many who attend his events say they feel enlightened by his presence. But Tibet's exiled spiritual leader leaves a profound economic impact, too. Rob Schmitz reports.


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