Graeme Smith

My main research interests are Chinese state and non-state actors in the Pacific and Southeast Asia, the political economy of local government in rural China, and the geopolitics of search engines. I have active projects in China (Beijing, Fujian and Yunnan), Papua New Guinea (PNG), New Caledonia, Tonga, Samoa, East Timor, Vanuatu, Fiji and the Solomon Islands. I also host the Little Red Podcast with former BBC and NPR China correspondent Louisa Lim of Melbourne University, which won the 2018 Australian Podcast Award in the News and Current Affairs category (

Career highlights

Appointment to the board of New Mandala (2019). Appointment as a Fellow in the Department of Pacific Affairs (2017). Appointment as senior lecturer and the University of Melbourne (2016) where I created the Little Red Podcast with Louisa Lim; appointment as a research fellow at the University of Sydney (2012); a postdoctoral fellow at UTS (2009); research associate at the ANU (2007), lecturer in Chinese Studies at the University of NSW (1999-2004). Visiting scholar at Sun Yat Sen University (2013), and the School of Environmental Science and Engineering, Tsinghua University (2001). Various academic awards, including the best article prize for The Journal of Pacific History (2013), the Gordon White Prize for the best article in China Quarterly (2011), WJ Liu Esq. Memorial Prize (2001), UNSW-Tsinghua Scholarship (2001), Chinese Government Scholarship (1998-1999).

Research Interest

The political economy of: Chinese outbound direct investment in the Pacific and Southeast Asia, service delivery in rural China, development assistance, migration, resource projects, search engines, and agribusiness.