1st Edition

AI and Education in China Imagining the Future, Excavating the Past

By Jeremy Knox Copyright 2023

    This book explores the relationships between artificial intelligence (AI) and education in China.

    It examines educational activity in the context of profound technological interventions, far-reaching national policy, and multifaceted cultural settings. By standing at the intersection of three foundational topics – AI and the recent proliferation of data-driven technologies; education, the most foundational of our social institutions in terms of actively shaping societies and individuals; and, finally, China, which is a frequent subject for dramatic media reports about both technology and education – this book offers an insightful view of the contexts that underpin the use of AI in education, and promotes a more in-depth understanding of China.

    Scholars of educational technology and digital education will find this book an indispensable guide to the ways new technologies are imagined to transform the future, while being firmly grounded in the past.

    1 Introduction  2. Policy, governance, and the state  3. Innovation, entrepreneurialism, and private enterprise  4. ‘Double reduction’ and the return of the state  5. Cities, regions, and rural divides  6. ‘Talent’ and the international flow of AI expertise  7. Personalisation, subjectivity, and the Chinese ‘self’  8. Conclusions


    Jeremy Knox is Senior Lecturer at the University of Edinburgh and Co-director of the Centre for Research in Digital Education. His research interests include the relationships between education, data-driven technologies, and wider society, and he has led projects funded by the Economic Social Research Council (ESRC) and the British Council in the UK. Jeremy’s published work includes Posthumanism and the MOOC: contaminating the subject of global education in 2016.

    "Western commentators often talk about the rise of AI in Chinese education with a mixture of fascination and horror. Jeremy Knox moves beyond the usual techno-orientalist stereotypes, and offers a clear-eyed appraisal of what China can teach us about the fast-changing relationships between AI, education, society and culture."

    Neil Selwyn, Monash University, Australia