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. 



Features by Rob Schmitz

China stops subsidizing polluting industries

The Chinese government withdrew its subsidies from some the country's most energy-intensive industries to stop paying polluters and also to show the world that it's economy is stable enough to make the withdrawal.
Posted In: Environment

Lackluster growth eases some of China's economic concerns

New numbers indicate China's economic growth has slowed slightly, indicating the country's efforts to cool down its economy are working.
Posted In: Investing

Google taking it easier with China

After months of a very publicized fight with the Chinese government, Google softened its approach to the Chinese government -- but they may still give up millions of users.
Posted In: Internet

Clean-techs get cold feet going public

Electric automaker Tesla Motors will soon become the first carmaker since Ford to go public. The firm is one of a first crop of clean-tech companies that are trying to go public. But a bunch of clean-tech start-ups have canceled at the last minute. Why? Rob Schmitz reports.
Posted In: Auto

Tax proposal to up cash in Superfund

The Environmental Protection Agency said it supports a bill that would reinstate taxes on the oil and gas industry to pay for the Superfund program. That's the pot of federal money that was set up 30 years ago to clean up the worst hazardous waste sites. Rob Schmitz reports.
Posted In: Taxes

Chinese firm first to sponsor World Cup

If you catch a World Cup game on TV, keep your eyes on the billboards circling the field. Rob Schmitz noticed something new in between the Adidas and McDonald's signs: the World Cup's first Chinese sponsor.

Scientists see oily silver lining in BP leak

BP has pledged a half-billion dollars towards researching the biological impacts of the Gulf oil spill, which is helping some eco-scientists continue their projects.
Posted In: Oil, Science

Lawmakers weigh how to make BP pay

On Tuesday, President Obama will address the American public about BP. The president is demanding the oil company put money into an escrow account. He wants oil spill victims -- not BP shareholders -- to get paid first. Rob Schmitz reports.
Posted In: Oil

EPA says, 'Use a less toxic cure for spill'

The Environmental Protection Agency said today that BP has to start using a less toxic form of chemical dispersant to break up that big oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Rob Schmitz reports.

Will oil spill hurt BP-sponsored exhibit?

An aquarium in Long Beach, Calif., will soon open a new sea otter exhibit. Cute, furry animals that kids adore -- what could go wrong? Well, the exhibit's sponsor is BP, the company trying to clean up one of the largest oil spills in U.S. history. Rob Schmitz reports.
Posted In: Oil


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