Jump to: Board of Directors, Team Members, Contributors

Board of Directors


Aya Adachi

Aya is a PhD candidate at AREA Ruhr and graduated with a masters in International Relations and International Organisations with a focus on East Asia from the University of Groningen. During her undergraduate in East Asian Politics at Ruhr-University Bochum she spent one semester at Zhejiang University of Technology in Hangzhou studying Chinese language. Aya gained practical experience as a research assistant at the chair of East Asian Politics at Ruhr-University Bochum and as an intern at the Austrian Embassy in Beijing as well as at Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) in Beijing. She works on China, Japan as well as South Korea. At the moment Aya is working as a Freelance Consultant for the GIZ in Beijing. At Mapping China Aya is the administrative head of the Journal Team and part of the Board of Directors.


Tatjana Romig

Tatjana is studying a masters in Political Science and Chinese Studies at the University of Heidelberg. Before she studied law at the University of Heidelberg, East Asian Politics at Ruhr-University Bochum and Chinese language at Fudan University, supported by a grant by the CSC in cooperation with the DAAD. Tatjana gained practical experience interning at the China Programme of the German Asia Foundation and the Chair of International Relations and Foreign Policy of the University of Heidelberg and as a research assistant at the University of Heidelberg’s Institute of Political Science. She is actively engaging in the student representation and was one of the main organisers of the career fair “Chancen Ostasien” in 2013 and 2015. At the moment Tatjana is interning in the Public Policy Programme of the Mercator Institute for China Studies in Berlin.


Julia Felicitas Tatrai

Julia graduated with a masters in Political Science at the Free University of Berlin while working as a research assistant at the Research Centre (SFB) 700 “Governance in Areas of Limited Statehood”. During her undergraduate in East Asian Politics at Ruhr-University Bochum she gained practical experience interning at the German Chamber of Commerce in Beijing supported by a PROMOS-grant, the Austrian embassy in Beijing as well as at the Asia-Pacific office of Friedrich-Ebert Foundation in Singapore.  Julia holds a scholarship of the Friedrich-Ebert Foundation and is member of the board of the public charity Abaana Uganda e.V. At the moment, she is in Nairobi for an internship and field research related to her master thesis.

Team Members

Marianne von Blomberg

Marianne is an LL.M student of Chinese Law at Zhejiang University in Hangzhou. During her undergraduate studies in Communication and Culture at Zeppelin University, she discovered her passion for ancient Chinese rhetorics and wrote about the concept of originality in China in the face of architectural mimicry and counterfeit products while studying Chinese in Taipei. After graduation she moved to Hangzhou in 2016, continuing to take a sociological perspective in her observations of the Chinese legal system. Her current research focuses on the legislation of the social credit system and the application of artificial intelligence in Chinese courts. She has worked at several editorial offices, the Mercator Institute for China Studies, the Future Research Department of Volkswagen AG, and the German Embassy in Ottawa.

Karin Chau

Karin studiert derzeit den Zweifachbachelor Chinastudien und Ökonomik an der Uni Münster. Sie ist gerade aus einem Auslandsaufenthalt auf Hainan und in Taiwan zurückgekommen und arbeitet nebenberuflich als Übersetzerin von chinesischer Literatur.


Thomas Otto

Thomas studiert zur Zeit im Master International Relations an der Jacobs University Bremen und der Universität Bremen. Zuvor hat er im Bachelor Philosophie und Sozialwissenschaften an der Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin mit dem Schwerpunkt politische Philosophie und Ethik im globalen Kontext sowie internationale Politik studiert. Zudem hat Thomas für ein Semester an der Zhejiang University in Hangzhou studiert und ein Praktikum bei der GIZ China in Beijing absolviert. Er arbeitet im Think Tank Team von Mapping China.


Straton Papagianneas

Straton holds a B.A. in Sinology from KU Leuven and a M.A. degree in China Studies from Heidelberg University. His studies focused on Chinese law and politics and development economics. He is currently doing a postgraduate in Economic Diplomacy at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel where he focuses on international law as well as economic policy. He is currently also an intern at China Politics Weekly and an active translator for Chinese Law Translate.


Theo Westphal

Theo studied Economy and Politics of East Asia (BA) and Modern East Asian Studies (MA) in Bochum and Duisburg. While also tackling many other interdisciplinary issues such as energy policy making and socio-economic development in East Asia, his studies have always been characterized by a strong focus on China’s international relations and foreign policy, as evidenced by both of his final theses’ theory-driven analyses of the tense security environment in the East and South China Seas, respectively. He gained practical experience in the field of transnational NGO cooperation during an internship in the China Programme of the German Asia Foundation in Cologne and worked as student and research assistant (SHK/WHK) at the IN-EAST in Duisburg, focusing on, inter alia, the political economy of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) and its impact on trade between China and Europe. A revised version of his award-winning Master’s thesis on China’s South China Sea policy under Xi Jinping has been published by Verlag Dr. Kovač, Hamburg, in 2018. Combining East Asian studies approaches with IR research, his ESRC-funded PhD project at the University of Sheffield, UK, seeks to investigate the potential impact of China’s regional identity formation narrative of an Asian “Community of Common Destiny” on regional security institution building processes in East and Southeast Asia.


Special thanks to Arthur Tarnowski for his ideas and support during the founding of Mapping China as well as for the majority of photos displayed on the homepage.