Created in China: The Great New Leap Forward, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Created in China

The Great New Leap Forward, 1st Edition

By Michael Keane


194 pages | 8 B/W Illus.

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This book examines China’s creative economy—and how television, animation, advertising, design, publishing and digital games are reshaping traditional understanding of culture. Since the 1950s China has endeavoured to catch-up with advanced Western economies. ‘Made in China’ is one approach to global competitiveness. But a focus on manufacturing and productivity is impeding innovation. China imports creativity and worries about its ‘cultural exports deficit’. In the cultural sector Chinese audiences are attracted to Korean, Taiwanese, and Japanese culture, as well as Hollywood cinema. This book provides a fresh look looks at China’s move up the global value chain. It argues that while government and (most) citizens would prefer to associate with the nationalistic, but unrealized ‘created in China’ brand, widespread structural reforms are necessary to release creative potential. Innovation policy in China has recently acknowledged these problems. It considers how new ways of managing cultural assets can renovate largely non-competitive Chinese cultural industries. Together with a history of cultural commerce in China, the book details developments in new creative industries and provides the international context for creative cluster policy in Beijing and Shanghai.


"'Created in China: the Great New Leap Forward' is a path-breaking book about China's new creative culture. A double treat for academic and industry readers, it changes the way we think about China."

Jing Wang, author of Brand New China: Advertising, Media, and Commercial Culture

"Impeccably researched and brimming with insights, Keane's book will be the gateway for all scholars entering the field of creative polices in China for many years to come."

Andrew Ross, author of Fast Boat to China--Lessons from Shanghai

"Michael Keane has gone into territory where no other author has been. This is a fresh and provocative account of how Chinese culture is responding to international challenges."

Zhang Xiaoming, Program Leader, Blue Book of China's Cultural Industry, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences

"The quality of Chinese creativity is not in doubt. The story has been wonderfully recounted in Joseph Needham's History of Science and Civilization in China. We are now seeing a new narrative which could be called 'The History of Art, Innovation and Civilization in China'. In this, Michael Keane is a spirited and expert guide."

John Howkins author of The Creative Economy: How People Make Money from Ideas

Table of Contents

Foreword. Introduction: Created in China Part 1: Culture and Civilisation 1. The Innovation Ecology: The Chinese Century Discourse and the Problems of Academic Categorisation 2. Territory, Technology and Taste: The Role of Institutions, Trade, Talent and Migration 3. The Culture-Knowledge Economy: A Short History of Cultural Markets in Traditional China 4. Revolution, Reform and Culture in Modern China: How Nation Building Trapped Innovation 5. Culture Goes to Market: The Debates in the 1980s and 1990s About the Role of Culture Part 2: From Made in China to Created in China 6. Innovation, Creative Economy and Catch-Up: From Cultural to Creative Industries (2003 – 2006) 7. Cities and the Creative Field: The Global Discourse of Clusters and Innovation 8. In Search of China’s New Clusters: Shanghai, Chongqing and Beijing 9. Reality TV, Post-Collectivism and the Long Tail: The Propensity to Copy and the Impacts of Copyright 10. Branding, Franchising and Licensing: Looking for New Business Models in Animation, Advertising and Digital Content 11. The Chinese Dragon and Cultural Re-Conversion: Exploring the Heartlands of Chinese Culture: The Great Wall, the Shaolin Temple and the Hengdian World Studios 12. The Great New Leap Forward? Reassessing the Evidence: Is it all a Dream? Appendix 1: China’s Cultural and Creative Industries: Table of Regulatory Powers and Functions. Appendix 2: Aggregated Data on China’s Media and Cultural Industries

About the Author

Michael Keane is Research Fellow with the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for Creative Industries and Innovation (CCI) at Queensland University of Technology, Australia. His most recent book (co-authored with Anthony Fung and Albert Moran) is New Television, Globalization and the East Asian Cultural Imagination (2006). He is co-editor of Television across Asia: Television Industries, Programme Formats and Globalisation (Routledge); and Media in China: Consumption, Content and Crisis (Routledge).

About the Series

Media, Culture and Social Change in Asia

The aim of this series is to publish original, high-quality work by both new and established scholars in the West and the East, on all aspects of media, culture and social change in Asia. New proposals are welcome, and should be sent in the first instance to the series editor, Stephanie Donald, at

Editorial Board:

Gregory N. Evon, University of New South Wales
Devleena Ghosh, University of Technology, Sydney
Michael Keane, Curtin University
Tania Lewis, RMIT University, Melbourne
Vera Mackie, University of Wollongong
Kama Maclean, University of New South Wales

Laikwan Pang, Chinese University of Hong Kong
Gary Rawnsley, Aberystwyth University
Ming-yeh Rawnsley, School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London
Jo Tacchi, Loughborough University
Adrian Vickers, University of Sydney
Jing Wang, MIT
Ying Zhu, Hong Kong Baptist University



Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / International / General
HISTORY / Asia / China
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Ethnic Studies / General
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Popular Culture
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Media Studies