Welcome to my website. I am Professor in Globalisation Studies at the Department of Mediastudies, and member of the Amsterdam School for Cultural Analysis (ASCA), at the University of Amsterdam. I am also part of the research priority area Global Digital Cultures. Since 2019, I am also affiliated to the State Key Lab of Media Convergence and Communication of the Communication University of China in Beijing under the 1000 talent scheme. Since 2015 I am a regular visiting scholar at the Beijing Film Academy. I am the founder and coordinator of the ASCA Transasia Cultural Studies Group, that convenes monthly and also serves as an email list.  Since 2023, I am a member of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW). My work focuses on the cultural implications of globalization, with a special interest in contemporary China.

I have worked a lot on popular music, in particular Chinese rock and pop music. Between 2007 and 2012, with a VIDI grant of the NWO, my research expanded towards contemporary art, new media and cinema; as well as towards other issues, in particular the global rise of the discourse of the creative industries, the possibilities to be critical and urban change in China. With an ERC grant from the EU I work on the project ChinaCreative, which engages with questions of creativity, governmentality and criticality in contemporary art, calligraphy, independent documentary cinema, Hunan satellite television and shanzhai art from Shenzhen. While this project officially ended in August 2019, it is still ongoing and continues to morph in new directions. With a HERA grant from the EU, I was between 2013 and 2016 part of a project on single women in Delhi and Shanghai. Apart from these issues, my writings, often co-authored with colleagues, also engage with topics ranging from fan cultures and Lord of the Rings to my mother’s liking of Rowen Hèze, as well as nylon stockings, my Germanophilia, and questions on how to survive the neoliberal university. Or I try to write a poem. Try.

I have been a visiting scholar at New York University, Fudan University in Shanghai, at The Université libre de Bruxelles, the Asia Research Institute of the National University of Singapore, and Hong Kong Baptist University. For my research I frequently travel to Beijing and Hong Kong. I am part of the editorial management of Global Media and China. I am in the editorial board of the Journal of Chinese Cinemas, the European Journal of Cultural Studies, China Information, the East Asian Journal of Popular Culture, Asiascape: Digital Asia, Online Media and Global Communication, and Quarterly Journal of Speech.

Together with Edwin Jurriëns, I edit a book series at Amsterdam University Press on Asian Visual Cultures. Together with Esther Peeren I edit a book series in Globalization, Culture and Society with Palgrave. I am affiliated to the International Association for Popular Music (IASPM), member of the Inter-Asia cultural studies movement and active in its Inter-asia popular music group. I am part of the advisory board of the Centre for Cultural Studies at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, and an advisor for the Institute for Culture and Society of Western Sydney University. I am also member of the board of the International Institute of Asian Studies (IIAS).

I have an MSc in tropical forestry (1992, Wageningen University), an MA in communication studies (1993, University of Amsterdam) and a PhD in sociology / anthropology (2001, University of Amsterdam).

All images on the website are taken by me. Compared to the images above, I have somehow less hair, but more grey hair. This website also contains as many of my publications as possible. The website is designed and made by Benjamin van Gogh.