Against the background of China’s increasing political and economic influence and the Chinese government’s efforts on public diplomacy, this article examines the extent to which the publics in various countries are interested in news about China as well as the national- and individual-level factors that explain audience interest in China. Drawing upon a cross-national survey conducted in 10 countries in 2009 and 2010, the analysis shows that China has attracted a level of global public attention comparable to other regional powers in the world. Consistent with studies about the determinants of foreign news content, the interest in news about China is stronger in countries that have closer economic connections with China. At the individual level, people with higher levels of education and income, as well as people who are more interested in the international political economy when consuming foreign news, are more likely to express an interest in news about China. The findings and analysis illustrate how the rising economic and political influence of China in the international arena is shaping the world’s interest in the country.


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pp. 1-21
Launched on MUSE
Open Access
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