Hugo de Burgh

Director of China Media CentreHugo de Burgh

Hugo de Burgh BA(Hons) MA PhD FRSA  is Professor of the Study of Journalism and Director of the China Media Centre. He is one of a small number of academics, which has pioneered the study of the Chinese media outside the Chinese world. Hugo de Burgh’s research examines the roles of journalists, particularly investigative journalists, in both Britain and China. He has published books and academic articles on both.

Hugo de Burgh’s current research deals with the ways in which the Chinese media are investigating and reporting environment issues and the impact of this upon Chinese media and government. The adaptation of the Chinese Party and government information systems to these developments and to the effects of growing internet use is a closely related topic and he has recently conducted a case study research project on this in Zhejiang, which he is currently writing up.  As an adviser to Chinese media organisations on producers’ and journalists’ professional development he has also written on this dynamic area.

Hugo de Burgh established the China Media Centre as a focal point for researchers, Visiting Scholars and postgraduates from the Chinese media industries. Started with a grant from the Quintin Hogg Trust and tasked to become self funding, its knowledge transfer and consultancy activities – along with grants for specific projects from RCUK and Leverhulme – now fund the Centre, including staff salaries, scholarships, fee waivers, academic conferences and seminars.

Hugo de Burgh holds a Professorship at Tsinghua University under the Chinese Ministry of Education’s 985 programme for bringing ‘key knowledge and talents’ to China, is International Dean in the School of International Journalism at Xinan University of Policy & Legislation and Honorary Professor of Shandong University. In addition to these leading Chinese academic institutions, he has close working relationships with Fudan University, with whom he set up the first International Media Academic Exchange in 1997, and China Communications University, where a Research Summer School is held each year. In 2010 he was appointed to Chair the Board of the International Accreditation Committee for Media and Communications of Tsinghua University. In 2013 he has been awarded the Honoured Endowment Professorship from two Departments of International Expertise, Peoples Republic of China. He is expected to give ten lectures each year at Tsinghua University and to be in residence for two months.

In the UK has been a Board Member, Great Britain – China Centre (a UK public body), since 2006  and Adviser on Higher Education Links for Communications and Media, British Council. He was responsible for content of the Smith Institute, 11 Downing Street series of 5 seminars Valuing China 2005-6 and initiated and directed The China Impact: The Westminster Hearings on China’s Economic Development and the UK, 5 conferences for the All-Party Group on China and the Select Committee for Trade & Industry 2006-7. He was Chair of the (Foreign Office) Global Opportunities Fund Human Rights Project 2005-2007 and recently directed China and the New Green Deal for the All Party Parliamentary Group on China as well as advising the FCO on the latest Wilton Park China conference.

He is regularly a keynote speaker in China at both academic and media institutions. Recent speaking engagements in the UK have been at Oxford University, the Frankfurt Book Fair, Wilton Park, Battle of Ideas, Royal Institute of International Affairs and the All Party Parliamentary Group on China.

Indications of Esteem

  • SAFEA Endowment Professor
  • [SAFEA国家外专局National Administration for International Expertise] 2013
  • Visiting Professor, University of Milan, 2012
  • External Examiner for all Chinese Studies, University of Nottingham, 2011-
  • Member, Accreditation Board for Communications & Media, Tsinghua University, 2010-
  • Honorary International Dean, International School of Media, Xinan University of Policy & Law, 2010
  • Honorary Fellow, 48 Group, 2008
  • Advisory Board Member, Tsinghua University School of Communications, 2007 – (representing W Europe)
  • Professor in Media, Tsinghua University [PRC 985 International Leading Scholar Programme Second Round/ Specialist Plan for the Introduction of Key Knowledge and Talents] position first taken up April-June 2007
  • Chair, AGORA, the forum for Culture and Education 2004-2009
  • Initiated and directed The China Impact: The Westminster Hearings on China’s Economic Development and the UK, 5 conferences for the All-Party Group on China and the Select Committee for Trade & Industry 2006-7, held in Parliament
  • Board Member, Great Britain – China Centre (a UK public body), 2006-
  • Responsible for content of the Smith Institute, 11 Downing Street series of 5 seminars Valuing China 2005-6
  • Chair of the (Foreign Office) Steering Group of Hold the Front Page – Pushing Human Rights up China’s News Agenda 2005-2007
  • Honorary Professor, Shandong University, 2005-
  • Validator, Verifier and then External Examiner for NTU degrees delivered abroad, 1997-2004


Hugo de Burgh’s books already published include Investigative Journalism (Routledge 2nd edition 2008), The Chinese Journalist (Routledge 2003), Making Journalists [The internationalization of journalism, including Latin America, the Arab World, Africa, Continental Europe, India and the USA] (Routledge 2005), China and Britain: the Potential Impact of China’s Development (Smith Institute 2005) and China Friend or Foe? (Icon 2006) His (2008) report of the Westminster Hearings, China Impact, published by McKinsey Consulting, was launched in London (in the House of Commons) and in China by the Chairman of the Banking Reform Commission.

(2014) (In Press) de Burgh, Hugo, China’s Media. New York: Polity.

(2013) de Burgh, Hugo. 你所不了解的西方故事 The West You Really Don’t Know. China: 江苏人民出版社 Jiangsu People Publishing (co-authored with Helen Briggs and Johnny Acton). 

(2012) [co-ed with Li Xiguang] 应对西方媒体: 新闻发言人及新闻官国际工作Western Correspondents in China: system and policy Beijing: 中国党建读物出版社

(2012) de Burgh, Hugo and Zeng Rong China’s Environment and China’s Environment Journalists. London: Intellect

(2010) de Burgh, Hugo et al New Opportunities for Climate Change and Environmental Reporting in China. IMS website:

(2008) [ed] Investigative Journalism [2nd Edition] London: Routledge

Now the core book on IJ in the UK, with 10 interpretative chapters and 12 chapters on the practise. The first edition has been translated, inter alia, into Spanish, Portugese, Farsi and Russian and a Chinese edition is underway.

(2007) The China Impact : China’s Rise and the future of the UK London: McKinsey & Co

Report of the Westminster Hearings on China’s Impact, held in Parliament March-July 2007

(2007)[co-editor, with Fazackerley, Anna and Black, Jeremy] Can the Prizes still Glitter? The future of British universities in a changing world UBP [contributors include Bill Rammell, Chris Patten, Alison Wolf, Boris Johnson, Frank Furedi, Harry Kroto] Milton Keynes: UBPISBN-10 0-9554642-0-X

(2006) China: Friend or Foe? Cambridge: Icon ISBN (hardback)10 1-84046-733-9 (paperback) -13 97-1840467-33-8

(2005) [ed] China and Britain: the Potential Impact of China’s Development

London: Smith Institute ISBN1902488938

(2005) Making Journalists: Diverse Models, Global Issues

London: Routledge ISBN (hardback) 0-415-31502-6 (paperback) 0-415-31501-8.

The internationalization of journalism, including Latin America, the Arab World, Africa, Continental Europe, India and the USA

(2003) The Chinese Journalist: Mediating information in the world’s most populous country

London: Routledge ISBN 0-415-30573-X

Probably still the leading work on Chinese journalism in English.

Articles in peer-reviewed journals 

de Burgh, Hugo, Zeng, Rong and Chen, Siming, (2012) ‘Chinese Television and the Search for Creativity’ – Creative Industries Journal V4 N2 PP137-154

de Burgh, Hugo and Mi Miao (2012) ‘Responding to an Activist Public: reconfiguring relationships between authority and media in a Chinese city’ – Media Culture & Society v34no8 Nov 2012 pp1013-1027 ISSN 0163-4437

de Burgh, Hugo and Zeng Rong (2012) ‘Environment correspondents in China in their own  words: Their perceptions of their role and the possible consequences of their journalism’. – Journalism v13 no8 Nov 2012 pp1004-1023 ISSN 1464-8849

de Burgh, Hugo (2011) Nuevos medios y periodismo de investigación en China | El dragón se mueve in Infoamérica–Iberoamerican Communication Review U Málaga Number 6

de Burgh, Hugo (2007) ‘Looking at China, Looking at the Chinese Media’, Introductory article to Cao Qing (ed) ‘Reporting China in the British Media’, Special Edition of China Media Research, v3n01 Jan 07 ISSN 18814 1556 889X

de Burgh, Hugo and Xin Xin (2006) ‘News Probe: What does it tell us about Chinese journalism today?’ in MedienJournal, vol 30 nr. 2-3/2006 ISSN 1025-9473

(2004) ‘Don’t blame the messenger!’ in (deBurgh, Hugo, et al ed) Can Vote, Won’t Vote Special edition of Public Affairs, edited with Ivor Gaber and Dominic Wright

(2004) ‘The Documentary as ‘Amplification’: Holding the Baby and the Politics of Attachment’ in  Contemporanea: Revista de Comunicacao e Cultura June 2004 vol2no1 139-160 ISSN 1806-0269

(2004) ‘Ruhm, Flucht und Gefangnis: William Cobbett, der erste investigative Journalist’ Internationale Fachzeitschrift fur Journalismus 2004 / 3.Quartal pp114-116 ISBN 3-89669-449-9

(2003) ‘The Journalist in China: Looking to the Past for Inspiration’ in Media History, Vol 9 No 3 December ISSN 1368-8804

(2003)  ‘Kings without Crowns? The Re-emergence of Investigative Journalism in China’  Media Culture & Society, vol 25 no 6 November ISSN 0163-4437

(2003)  ‘Great Aspirations and Conventional Repertoires: Chinese regional television journalists and their work’ Journalism Studies, vol 4 no 2 May ISSN 1461-670X

(2003) ‘Skills are not enough: the case for undergraduate degrees in Journalism’ in Journalism vol 4 no 1 February ISSN 1464-8849

(2002) ‘全球化时代对外国的报道: 一则 案 列研究’ (Reporting “the Other” in the Age of Globalisation) in (special edition of) 媒介研究 The Chinese Journal of Media Studies April  ISBN 7-302-01272-5/G.269

(2001) ‘Chinese concepts of the journalist’ in Communication (New Delhi : Indian Institute of Mass Communication), vol XXXVI no 4 October-December

(2000) ‘变化中的新闻文化: 当代英国媒体法规简介’ (Journalistic Culture in Transition: the institutional context in Britain Today) 新闻与传播研究(Communications Today) 中国社会科学院[Academy of Social Sciences, Peking]  ISSN 1004-9061

(2000) ‘英国国家新闻记者的社会特征’ (The Social Identity of the Anglophone Journalist) 国际新闻学  (International Communications) [Renmin University, Peking] Spring  ISSN 1002-5685

(2000) ‘Chinese Journalism in the academy: the politics and pedagogy of media study in China’ Journalism Studies n1 v4, ISSN 1461-670X

Articles in edited collections 

(2012) de Burgh, Hugo ‘Leveson and China: The Leveson Inquiry as reference in China’s debate over Media Regulation’ in  Mair, John (ed) (2012) After Leveson? The Future of British Journalism London: Abramis Academic

(2011) ‘New Media and Investigative Journalists in China’ in Mair, John and Keeble, Richard (2011) Investigative Journalism London: Abramis Academic

(2011) ‘Motivation in Journalism’ in de Burgh, Li and Zeng [ed] Western Correspondents in China: system and policy Beijing: Jianshe Chubanshe

(2009) ‘Investigative Journalism’ section in Eadie, William (ed) (2009) 21st Century Communication: A Reference Handbook Thousand Oaks: SAGE

(2008) ‘Introduction’ to de Burgh, Hugo (ed) (2008) Investigative Journalism London : Routledge

(2008) ‘Investigative Journalism since 1997: issues and debates’ in de Burgh, Hugo (ed) (2008) Investigative Journalism London : Routledge

(2008) ‘Journalism with Attitude: The Daily Mail’ in ibid

(2008) ‘Thirty Years of British Investigative Journalism’ in ibid 48-65

[and 6 other chapters]

de Burgh, Hugo (2007) ‘The China Connection’ Introduction to (2007 in press)[ed deBurgh, Fazackerley A and Black J] Globalisation and the future of UK Universities


(2005) ‘China in the World’ in China and Britain: the Potential Impact of China’s Development Smith Institute ISBN1902488938

(2005) ‘Journalism and the New Cultural Paradigm’ in de Burgh, Hugo  [ed] (2005) Making Journalists Routledge ISBN (hardback) 0-415-31502-6 (paperback) 0-415-31501-8.

(2002) ‘What Chinese Journalists believe about Journalism’ in Rawnsley, G (ed) Political Communication in Greater China London : Macmillan ISBN 0-7007-1734-X

(2000) ‘The Regulatory Framework of Investigative Journalism since 1990: the case of C4 Dispatches’ in Ralph, S (ed) Regulation in the Digital Age Luton : U of Luton Press ISBN 1-86020-574 7


Tel: +44 (0)20 7911 5000 (ext. 4416)