Stories from Mary Kay Magistad

Mary Kay Magistad

East Asia Correspondent

Mary Kay Magistad has been The World’s East Asia correspondent since 2002 and has lived and reported in the region for two decades. She travels regularly and widely throughout China and beyond, exploring how China’s rapid transformation has affected individual lives and exploring the bigger geopolitical, economic and environmental implications of China’s rise. She steps back every so often to do an in-depth series on such topics as the China’s urbanization – the biggest and most rapid move from the countryside to the cities in human history, on the potential for innovation in China, and on the ripple effects on Chinese society of the One Child Generation coming of age. Mary Kay’s seven-part series on that subject, called “Young China,” won a 2007 Overseas Press Club Award, one of several awards she has received.

Mary Kay started out in Southeast Asia, based in Bangkok, as a regular contributor to “NPR,” “The Washington Post,” “The Boston Globe,” and other news media. She covered the Cambodian civil war and the UN peace process, the Burmese army’s crackdown on pro-democracy demonstrators and the United States’ wary rapprochement in the early ‘90s with Vietnam. Mary Kay also reported farther afield, covering the aftermath of genocide in Rwanda, tensions with Iraq in Kuwait, and other stories.

Mary Kay became NPR’s full-time Southeast Asia correspondent in 1993, and in 1996 she opened NPR’s first Beijing bureau. She took time out for two fellowships at Harvard – a Nieman and a Radcliffe fellowship — enough time to realize China was too interesting a story to leave – before going back to China for “The World.”

Mary Kay graduated from Northwestern University with a double major in journalism and history, and has an MA in international relations from the University of Sussex in England, completed on a Rotary Foundation Fellowship.

Recent Stories

Conflict & Justice

Khmer Rouge guilty verdict

Today, a former Khmer Rouge official was sentenced to 35 years in prison for his role in the death of nearly two million Cambodians during the time of the 'Killing Fields.' The World's Mary Kay Magistad reports from Phnom Penh.

Conflict & Justice

World Cup gambling crackdown

More than 5,000 people have been taken into custody in a crackdown on illegal World Cup gambling. Police raided hundreds of betting dens across Asia. Anchor Marco Werman gets the story from The World's Mary Kay Magistad in Beijing.

Arts, Culture & Media

Working conditions in China

The World's Mary Kay Magistad reports on changing labor conditions in China. Workers there are increasingly pressing their case for higher wages and better work conditions. That means Chinese businesses are having to rethink their profit models.