Who doesn’t know the situation – the school years are finally over, but what now? This situation drew Stefanie Thiedig to the Middle Kingdom for the first time in 2000. Through an ad in the German national weekly Zeit, she applied for a year of Chinese language study in Beijing. It was the first of many stays. As a sinologist, she ventured into self-employment at the beginning of 2009, after she was deterred by the hierarchical structures during her first steps on Beijing’s job market. “At least fifty percent of what you do all day long has to be interesting in some way,” is how she has blithely described her life motto ever since.
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