In recent years, China’s publishing industry has made significant strides in sharing China’s stories and perspectives with the world, but it has yet to fully integrate into the mainstream international publishing market.
China’s international publishing now faces challenges posed by diverse values, cultural differences and technological revolutions. In this context, three major challenges must be tackled, with the ultimate goal of enhancing the international communication capacity and global influence of Chinese civilization.
First, strengthen top-level design. We should rely on the establishment of China’s international discourse system to expand overseas presence in a scientific and sensible manner, and implement elaborate and precise communication strategies.
Second, improve the effectiveness of cultural communication. We should create high-quality products with positive orientations and distinctive features, so that publications carrying Chinese discourse are more likely to gain recognition among the international community and overseas audiences.
Third, facilitate the entry of Chinese content products into the mainstream international communication channels. We should innovate the channels and platforms for international communication, and form an international communication network that accommodates the content, methods, and audiences of communication.
The high-quality development of China’s international publishing in the new era must uphold fundamental principles and break new ground.
“Upholding fundamental principles” mainly involves three aspects. First, we must uphold the standpoint of Chinese culture. China’s international publishing outreach should combine content creation with the development of China’s cultural power, enhancing the international competitiveness of Chinese publications while also building up China’s international communication capacity. We need to design high-quality products that carry Chinese values, express Chinese standpoints and proposals, and tell wonderful Chinese stories.
Second, we must adhere to the basic principle of exchanges and mutual learning between civilizations. To enhance the affinity and effectiveness of international communication, we should identify the convergence between Chinese stories and global concerns, and use concepts, categories and expressions integrating both Chinese and foreign elements in product development.
Third, we must follow the principles of international communication. It is important to not only explore the global cultural ecology, the characteristics of the cultural environment, and the principles of cultural communication, but also master content creation and brand building techniques to shape our brand image in a targeted manner. This will increase brand awareness among target audiences and improve communication outcomes.
“Breaking the new ground” emphasizes five aspects. First, we should adapt to the diverse requirements of content delivery in the new media era, and merge international cultural communication, international publishing trade, and technological innovation.
Second, we should focus on content creation and brand building, while paying close attention to international hot topics and social concerns. We can create targeted and diversified content and themes through improved planning and design as well as appropriate topic setting, thereby solving the problems of “what to say” and “how to say” in the international communication of Chinese culture.
Third, we should optimize the Chinese publishing industry’s global strategy. In order to increase the reach and influence of Chinese publications overseas, it is necessary to build a new system of international publishing communication that integrates products, solutions, marketing, services, channels and platforms.
Fourth, we should boost innovation in the construction of digital communication platforms, and promote the coordinated development of digital content production, digital transmission, and digital operation. This can encourage the emergence of a new ecology of integrated development in publishing.
Fifth, we should explore new models of mutual benefit and win-win cooperation with multiple subjects and in multiple fields overseas and carry out in-depth strategic cooperation with related international organizations. This will facilitate the sharing of resources, information, services, and channels, and open up a new path of integrated development conducive to the international communication of Chinese publications.
Qi Dexiang is a professor in the School of Journalism and Communication at Nankai University.