About

The Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) was unveiled in 2013 by China’s president Xi Jinping and since then has been ubiquitous around the world.

Although in recent years much has been said and written about China’s flagship Initiative, there are still a lot of uncertainties surrounding it. Which entities and mechanisms are related to BRI? Which projects are actually BRI projects? How much has been invested along the route so far? What are the implications of BRI projects for local and regional economies, societies and the environment? What are the specific financial risks of BRI projects? How far does the Belt and Road Initiative reshape the global trade system and potentially the geopolitical order?

All of these questions currently cannot be answered sufficiently. What is certain though is that the BRI is here to stay. Due to the fact that the BRI has considerable potential to impact the political and economic world order greatly – not just because of its financial scale – we believe it is crucial to facilitate the debate and to foster knowledge about the Belt and Road Initiative.

Verified information regarding the BRI and related projects is scarce. For this reason, this website seeks to shed light on the different layers of the Initiative and to gather data by looking closely at the single projects along the BRI corridors and the related facts & figures. By doing so we hope, not only to understand the individual projects better but also to draw conclusions regarding the general outline of the single corridors and eventually of the whole Initiative.

This website is a work in progress. We welcome all feedback and are open to guest contributions.

The Team

Lisa Hielscher
Lisa has worked and lived in China for three years. With a Bachelor degree in China Studies/Political Science from University of Cologne and a Master degree in China Studies from Leiden University, her background has a strong China focus. Her research interest is twofold 1) the Sino-Indian relationship 2) the influence of the Belt and Road Initiative on China’s foreign policies and relationship with neighboring states, especially in the area of South Asia.

Sebastian Ibold
Sebastian has worked and lived in China since 2011. He holds a Master degree in Urban and Regional Planning from Brandenburg Technical University BTU and is focused on the fields of master planning, urban regeneration, urban mobility and climate change. His research interest lays on the implications of the projects under the Belt and Road Initiative for urban development processes and related local and regional socio-economic impacts.