About the Author

Hitching my wagon to China in 1981-82 with dissertation research at Nanjing University, I was in for a life of adventure. On finishing my Ph.D. at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, I landed a position in the only economics department in the U.S. to regard a China specialist as core to its mission – at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. From that base, I returned to China regularly over the next decade, including a semester at Nankai University in the spring of 1989, only to be amazed anew with each visit by the pace of change.

author photoIn the Chinese spirit of jumping into the sea, I left my tenured position in paradise in 1994 to freelance as a consultant in Beijing. Major projects involved work with the National Bureau of Statistics measuring small scale business activity for the national accounts and efforts to facilitate economic engagement across the border with Central Asia. The latter led to writing a chapter for a volume on China’s western region of Xinjiang, and that in turn got me blacklisted along with all other contributors to the volume. From 2003 to 2010 one visa effort after another met with failure. I did manage to get back in three times for short term teaching stints between 2010 and 2013, but have since been denied entry again.

In hindsight, I've come to feel the Chinese government did me a favor by forcing me to branch out. I spent four years at the National University of Singapore and am now in my third year at the University of the Philippines. The inception of Macroeconomics for Emerging East Asia traces to NUS where the misfit of American macro texts for teaching students from Asia became painfully obvious. I set out to fill the need for a textbook suited to the region, and have been able to shape material with the help of students at UP. Also at UP, I’ve enjoyed teaching a course on the Chinese economy with the learning going both ways as the students inject comparison with the Philippines. The country has one of the world’s most dynamic economies and a natural beauty that is unsurpassed.

Since 2015 I have served as the Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Asian Economics. I became a protégé of founding editor Jan Dutta through participation in all six China conferences he organized between 1987 and 2002, and was honored by his invitation to take on the position.

My proudest achievement has been raising my amazing daughter, Rayne, now at Vanderbilt University, majoring in neuroscience and minoring in Chinese. She has set her sights on medical school and has found opportunities to gain hands on experience in the Dominican Republic and at Philippine General Hospital. We enjoy hiking and exploring new places together.

Calla Wiemer
3 November 2017