Ant Tribe 蚁族

The term yizu (蚁族), or “ant tribe,” refers to unemployed college graduates born after 1980 — in other words, the crop of college graduates over the past two years — who generally live on the margins of China’s cities, in urbanizing villages or districts where they can find cheaper housing and search for economic opportunities. The yizu, as a young, restless and educated new segment of Chinese society, are a growing social concern for the government as a potential source of instability. According to a report from the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences released in June 2010, yizu now number more than one million nationwide, and an estimated 100,000 live in Beijing alone.

David Bandurski

Now director of the CMP, leading the project’s research and partnerships, David joined the team in 2004 after completing his master’s degree at Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism. He is currently an honorary lecturer at the Journalism and Media Studies Centre. He is the author of Dragons in Diamond Village (Penguin/Melville House), a book of reportage about urbanization and social activism in China, and co-editor of Investigative Journalism in China (HKU Press).