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Judy Lin

Interview with Judy Lin (Journalist and International Business Researcher)

1. Your work emphasizes writing tech stories with a human touch. Can you share what inspired you to take this approach and how it shapes your storytelling? Technology reports used to cater exclusively to engineers, who were intensely focused on product specifications, features, and cost-performance ratios. These reports were often dry and superficial. However, the evolution of technology narratives has shown that innovation can stem from a human touch. Take, for instance, Nintendo’s introduction of the Wii. This launch piqued my interest in the brilliant minds behind the innovative device. What inspired them to create a gaming system that transcended age barriers, allowing both children and adults to play together seamlessly? These are the narratives that have the power to motivate young individuals to pursue engineering careers, crafting innovative solutions that reshape the way we interact with technology. As I resumed my role at ‘DIGITIMES‘ international news desk in 2015, reporting on global technology trends and analyzing technological advancements, I found myself drawn to stories that showcase this human element in tech innovation 2. Having coached young business news translators and reporters at Reuters and Digitimes, what key advice do you offer to aspiring journalists? Stay curious and observant – news springs up all around you. My mentors at Reuters instilled in me the values of honesty and kindness towards everyone. Only when you win the trust of people, will they start to provide you with valuable sources and information. Nevertheless, I now refrain from offering unsolicited advice, as not everyone welcomes it. 3. Your research spans various areas, including risk/crisis communication management and political economy. How do you integrate your research into your journalism work? I specialized in risk/crisis communication and policy/regulation analysis during my studies at the London School of Economics and Political Science. This knowledge proves valuable when news events such as earthquakes affecting semiconductor fabs or pandemics cause panic to occur. As a voracious reader with interests spanning history, economics, popular science, and social sciences, I believe that journalism revolves around covering news events. However, possessing knowledge and a network of experts allows for a deeper exploration or interpretation of impacts from a different perspective. In a recent project titled “Why does China require US$47.5 billion for Phase 3 of the Big Fund despite concerns of chip oversupply?” I leveraged my understanding of China’s banking system and PBOC data to inform readers about the rationale behind state banks participating in Big Fund Phase 3. This shed light on how the fund’s magnitude may not directly translate into breakthroughs in semiconductor technology. Political economy serves as a valuable tool in unraveling the repercussions of industries amidst power struggles. Additionally, insights from political science and theories on power interdependencies play a pivotal role in understanding these dynamics. 4. Can you discuss some of the emerging trends in MNE and social enterprise internationalization strategies that you’ve observed? Multinational enterprises (MNEs) are increasingly focusing on ESG (Environmental, Social, and Governance) practices and achieving carbon neutrality due to pressure from their investors. Consequently, Apple has mandated its supply chain partners to adopt environmentally friendly energy practices and subjected them to sustainability audits. Similarly, banks such as DBS are actively supporting social enterprises as part of their ESG initiatives. An illustrative example of social enterprise internationalization is Japan’s Mother House. To learn more about their work, you can visit their website: here 5. You’ve covered a range of topics, from M&A and technology to AI, blockchain, and fintech. Which of these areas do you find most exciting currently, and why? Certainly, AI remains a widely debated topic, with numerous perspectives shared by various individuals. While some tend to vilify or venerate this technology, it’s important to recognize that technologies, including AI, undergo lifecycles of their own. Personally, I prefer observing technology from a distance to discern its evolution and impact. In terms of M&A narratives, one of the most intriguing stories I covered delved into the analysis of how Chinese internet giants were acquiring or investing in Southeast Asian startups, using them as springboards to enhance their influence in the region. This particular article was penned in 2016. M&A data proves invaluable in supporting insights into the strategies implemented by these companies – illuminating their domestic competition dynamics and their approaches to seizing opportunities for growth on a global scale. 6. How do you approach covering complex macroeconomic issues in China to make them accessible and engaging for your readers? I often request tech experts to simplify their explanations of complex technologies for me in everyday language. Subsequently, I offer explanations in simple terms, utilizing numerous analogies and examples to enhance comprehension. Nonetheless, the policy rationale of a planned economy, as seen in countries like China, fundamentally diverges from that of a capitalist nation. In this context, journalists serve as vital bridges, offering essential background context and articulating information in a manner that resonates with Western readers. 7. Can you share a particularly memorable story or project that you worked on and its impact? In 2014, I conducted an annual earnings analysis on Taiwanese insurance companies and uncovered some suspicious findings. Several companies exhibited exponential revenue growth, yet their losses were rapidly escalating at the same time. Seeking clarity, I reached out to industry experts for insights on the circumstances driving this anomaly and its underlying causes. Moreover, I obtained permission to interview a company’s CEO, who appeared to function as a mere figurehead under the chairman’s directives. The findings led me to conclude that insurance policyholders are likely to lose their financial protection if the company fails to correct its management style. Subsequently, the Financial Supervisory Commission initiated investigations into this company, and another one flagged by industry professionals. The inquiry revealed that these companies were diverting funds from policyholders’ insurance premiums to bolster their investments. Consequently, the government intervened, prompting the closure of these entities and facilitating their acquisition by financially stable corporations. This decisive action safeguarded the interests of the affected insurance customers. This investigative report was conducted…

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Dolkun Isa

Interview with Dolkun Isa (President of World Uyghur Congress)

Overview → The World Uyghur Congress (WUC) is an international organization that represents the collective interest of the Uyghur people both in East Turkistan and abroad. The main objective of WUC is to promote the right of the Uyghur people to use peaceful, nonviolent, and democratic means to determine the political future of East Turkistan. → The Uyghurs and other Turkic Muslim peoples are currently facing genocide. Over the past few years, the Chinese government’s repression of the Uyghurs and other Turkic people living in East Turkistan has increased significantly. An estimated 3 million Uyghur Muslims are arbitrarily detained in a mass network of concentration camps and subjected to indoctrination, mental and physical torture, rape, forced sterilization, and other forms of inhumane treatment to erode their religion, ethnicity, and culture. These widespread and systemic violations are supported by a pervasive, technology-enabled system of surveillance that includes collecting extensive biometric data of large groups of Uyghur residents. In addition, millions of Uyghurs are subjected to state-sponsored forced labor schemes, tainting global supply chains.  Human Rights Violations → The Chinese government is actively committing crimes against humanity and genocide against Uyghurs and other Turkic Muslim peoples. → There is various evidence and documentation on the human rights abuses committed by the CCP. These include first-hand witness accounts by camp survivors, who have testified in front of national parliaments, and governments on the torture, sexual abuse, and forced labor that Uyghurs, Kazakhs, and other Turkic Muslim people are subjected to inside China’s concentration camps. Countless expert reports on human rights abuses are also widely available, these reports focus on various issues, such as forced labor, transnational repression, and the use of biometric mass surveillance of Uyghurs. The Uyghur Human Rights Project (UHRP) furthermore documents and reports on various issues related to the Uyghur genocide and the World Uyghur Congress (WUC) regularly issues submissions to the UN human rights mechanisms (ex. CERD, CEDAW, Universal Periodic Review). Furthermore, the independent Uyghur Tribunal, an independent people’s tribunal that was launched on 3 September 2020 at the request of WUC President Dolkun Isa to investigate the CCP’s heinous crimes against Uyghurs and other Turkic Muslim peoples has heard and documented countless witness reports and expert testimonies. A final judgment was delivered on the 9th of December 2021, ruling that China is committing genocide against Uyghurs. The report of The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) offers the most definitive assessment of the issues faced by Uyghurs and other Turkic peoples from the world’s leading human rights body. The report finds that the abuses committed by the Chinese government “may constitute international crimes, in particular crimes against humanity.” International Response →  The OHCHR report was an important step towards recognizing the Uyghur genocide, as was the recognition of crimes against humanity and/or genocide from 11 national parliaments, including the European Parliament. Nevertheless, concrete actions are limited if not missing. For example in October 2022 the UN Human Rights Council voted not to discuss allegations of abuses against Uyghurs. An example of positive action is the US Uyghur Forced Labour Prevention Act (UFLPA) to combat forced labor products coming into the US. This is a concrete step on how Uyghur forced labor can be tackled. It is on international community to work together on finding joint resolutions to end the genocide against Uyghurs.  A global answer is needed. → There are various things governments can do to address the situation effectively, below listed are some recommendations:1. Governments and organizations must hold China accountable for crimes against humanity and genocide and openly denounce the human rights abuses against Uyghurs and other Turkic people.2. Human rights should be prioritized in all policy areas instead of the economic partnerships countries engage in with China.3. Governments should support the creation of a U.N. Special Rapporteur on China to report on and investigate the human rights situation in the country and urge the Chinese government to allow independent country visits composed of UN Working Groups and Special Rapporteurs to East Turkistan.4. Countries and international organizations must impose targeted sanctions, such as travel bans and asset freezes, on Chinese officials and institutions complicit in the genocide of the Uyghur and Turkic people.5. Risks related to Chinese foreign interference should be investigated and mitigated.6. Diplomatic pressure should be applied on states who are deporting Uyghurs to China, in violation of the principle of non-refoulment, and to protect Uyghur refugees and asylum seekers. Furthermore, countries should repeal existing extradition treaties with China. Advocacy and Awareness → The WUC conducts advocacy on the national level with different national parliaments and on the international level, through regular engagement with the United Nations system to raise human rights violations against the Uyghur people. Engaging with the UN bodies and mechanisms gives the WUC the opportunity to raise these issues before representatives from national governments and international human rights experts. This includes engagement at the Human Rights Council, meetings with permanent missions in Geneva, engagement at the UN Minority Forum, and submitting various reports to UN Treaty Bodies. Furthermore, the WUC engages with various EU institutions, including the European Parliament, the European External Action Service, and the European Commission. This work ranges from working together with MEPs and briefing European Officials, to addressing committees and subcommittees. Our advocacy efforts and good relationships with MEPs have helped to put Uyghur-related issues on the agenda for resolutions inside the European Parliament, such as the genocide resolution of 2022. → The WUC is exploring different justice and accountability mechanisms to support the Uyghur community and hold the CCP accountable. One of these avenues is a criminal complaint in Buenos Aires, Argentina under the universal jurisdiction provisions as set out in the Argentinian Constitution. If a case is opened against the individuals most responsible for the crimes against humanity and genocide against the Uyghurs, the judge can summons witnesses to attend court to give their evidence on oath. This would mark a historic opportunity for the Uyghur people and the…

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