Our Team

  • Annie Cantara
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    Annie Cantara

    annie team 262x262 - Our TeamAnnie Cantara is Associate Director of the Think Tank at the Paulson Institute, where she leads the creative team on conceptualization, product design, UI and UX, web development, and content distribution efforts. In addition to leading the creative team, Annie collaborates regularly with the research team to bring their analysis and products to life, in a way that’s both intellectually engaging and highly accessible. She has trained in user research, testing, and UX principles, and has expertise in prototyping, data visualization tools, and industry leading design software. She also works closely with the director on the overall creative strategy of the think tank. A graduate of the University of Chicago, Annie was the managing editor of the university’s independent student newspaper, The Chicago Maroon.

    Annie Cantara
  • Holly He
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    Holly He

    holly team 262x262 - Our TeamHolly He is a research associate in the Think Tank at the Paulson Institute, where she researches and generates various web analytics to support the product development work of the MacroPolo team. With experiences in multimedia production, she’ll also explore new areas of research and content distribution channels. Previously, she worked as a multimedia fellow for the Texas Tribune, scripted and edited documentaries for CNN International, and learned the ins and outs of film production and social media marketing with The Kindling Group in Chicago. A graduate of Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism, Holly holds a degree in journalism with a minor in Psychology and a certificate in Integrated Marketing.

    Holly He
  • Young Kim
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    Young Kim
    Young Kim
  • Damien Ma
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    Damien Ma

    damien team 262x262 - Our TeamDamien Ma is Director of the Think Tank at the Paulson Institute, where he co-founded MacroPolo. He is the author or editor of the books, In Line Behind a Billion People: How Scarcity Will Define China’s Ascent in the Next Decade and The Economics of Air Pollution in China (by Ma Jun). He currently also serves as adjunct faculty at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. Previously, Ma was a Senior Analyst at Eurasia Group, the political risk research and advisory firm. At EG, he mainly focused on the China and East Asia markets, covering areas that spanned energy and commodities and industrial policy to elite politics and US-China relations. He also led work on analyzing Mongolian politics and its mining sector. His advisory and analytical work served a range of clients from institutional investors and multinationals to the US, Japanese, and Singaporean governments. Prior to joining Eurasia Group, he was a manager of publications at the US-China Business Council in Washington, DC, where he was also an adjunct instructor at Johns Hopkins SAIS. Early in his career, he worked at public relations firm H-Line Ogilvy in Beijing, where he served multinational clients. In addition, Ma has published widely, including in The Atlantic, New York Times, Foreign Affairs, The New Republic, Foreign Policy, and Bloomberg, among others. He has also appeared in a range of broadcast media such as the Charlie Rose Show, BBC, NPR, and CNBC. In addition to media appearances, Ma has keynoted or spoken at various industry, investor, and academic conferences, including CLSA and Credit Suisse Latin America. Ma is a former term member of the Council on Foreign Relations and was named a “99under33” foreign policy leader by the Young Professionals in Foreign Policy. He speaks fluent Mandarin Chinese.

    Damien Ma
  • Joy Dantong Ma
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    Joy Dantong Ma

    joy team 262x262 - Our TeamJoy Dantong Ma is Associate Director of the Think Tank at the Paulson Institute. She leads the think tank’s research product development cycle and execution. In addition to product management, her own research spans international economics and technology policy, specifically covering cross-border investment, international trade, artificial intelligence, and the telecom industry. Her work has appeared in publications ranging from The Washington Post and New York Times to Axios and BBC, and she has spoken at various China-related conferences. Previously, Ma conducted macroeconomic analysis for consultancies including Moody’s Investors Service and KPMG, as well as researched China’s economic issues for The Wall Street Journal in Beijing. A native of Jilin, Ma received economic training in Beijing and holds an MPA from Columbia University. A native Mandarin speaker, she has also completed professional data science training.

    Joy Dantong Ma
  • Dinny McMahon
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    Dinny McMahon

    dinny team 262x262 - Our TeamDinny McMahon is a Fellow at the Paulson Institute and author of the book China’s Great Wall of Debt: Shadow Banks, Ghost Cities, Massive Loans, and the End of the Chinese Miracle, which is due to be published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt in the first half of 2018. Dinny spent 10 years working as a financial journalist in China. Between 2009 and 2015, he was with the Wall Street Journal in Beijing where he wrote about China’s banking and financial sector, focusing on rising debt levels, urbanization, and the role of the state sector in the economy. Previously Dinny wrote for Dow Jones Newswires in Shanghai where he focused his reporting on the yuan and China’s foreign exchange market. He also contributed to the Far Eastern Economic Review. Prior to joining the Paulson Institute, Dinny spent two years as a fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington DC. Dinny has a Bachelor of Commerce and a Bachelor of Arts from the University of New South Wales in Sydney. He also attended the Johns Hopkins SAIS program in Nanjing for Chinese and American Studies.

    Dinny McMahon
  • Chris Roche
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    Chris Roche

    chris team 262x262 - Our TeamBorn in Evanston and now a resident of Chicago’s north side, Chris turned his passion for coding and creativity into a web development career he loves. With previous experience in retail management and front-end-development, Chris landed his dream job with the PI/Macropolo team and loves turning the team’s research into amazing visual experiences on the web. A graduate of the University of Oregon, Chris is a Chicagoan through-and-through but also takes every chance to travel to fantastic places and spent a year teaching English while wandering around China. He’s a pretty happy guy but he’s much happier when the Bears and Cubs are winning…

    Chris Roche
  • Matt Sheehan
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    Matt Sheehan

    matt team 262x262 - Our TeamMatt Sheehan is a Nonresident Fellow at the Paulson Institute’s in-house think tank. Based in the San Francisco Bay Area, he was formerly the China correspondent for The Huffington Post. For five years, he lived and worked between the Chinese cities of Xi’an and Beijing, and the Bay Area. In addition to covering China, Matt has also worked and written about the developing ties between California and China and is completing a book manuscript on that topic.

    Matt Sheehan
  • Houze Song
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    Houze Song

    houze team 262x262 - Our TeamHouze Song is a Research Fellow at the Paulson Institute, where he works primarily on the Institute’s think tank activities. He previously worked as a researcher at the Columbia Global Center (East Asia). Before that, he worked as a research manager at the Unirule Institute, where he assisted the chairman Mao Yushi with research and project management. He holds an MA in quantitative methods and an MPA in international economics, both from Columbia University, and a BA in economics from Peking University.

    Houze Song
  • Neil Thomas
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    Neil Thomas

    neil team 262x262 - Our TeamNeil Thomas is a Research Associate in the Think Tank at the Paulson Institute, where he works on Chinese politics and international political economy. Neil previously worked for The Australian National University, both as a Morrison Scholar at the Australian Centre on China in the World and as a Research Project Officer at the Crawford School of Public Policy. He has also spent time at the Carnegie-Tsinghua Center, Danwei Media, and The Texas Tribune, and has written for publications including The China Story Journal, East Asia Forum, International Journal of Public Policy, Australian Financial Review, and Kennedy School Review. Neil holds a Master in Public Policy from the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, where he was an IGA Student Fellow at The Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, and a Bachelor of Arts in economics and political science from the University of Western Australia, where he was a UWA Fogarty Scholar.

    Neil Thomas
  • Job Opportunities
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    Job Opportunities

    Call for applications: Multimedia Production Interns

    The Paulson Institute is looking for a part-time multimedia intern to support multimedia projects from September to December. The main focus of this position will be supporting the development of a new video series by the think tank MacroPolo.The individual will be involved in all aspects of video and audio production, but particularly video editing using Premiere Pro. This is a great opportunity for someone interested in a future career in creative multimedia production and journalism.

    The internship will hone your editing skills and potentially help you acquire skills in production set-up, camera work, and content distribution. Ultimately, you’ll gain real-world experience in fast-turnaround video editing and will have clips for your portfolio. This is a paid, part-time internship that requires 20 hours/week in the Paulson Institute’s downtown Chicago office.

    More information here.

    Student Fellows Program and Internships

    The Think Tank offers Student Fellow positions and internships to work with the MacroPolo team on extensive research and writing projects, digital content and products, and technical and multimedia efforts. These are great opportunities to join an energetic and entrepreneurial team to help build a leading platform on China’s political economy.

    Although general research is required, Student Fellows also have the chance to lead on significant projects and potentially co-publish substantial work. Previous cohorts have gone on to finance, consulting, government, and managerial positions at MacroPolo.

    The Student Fellows program is conducted in partnership with the University of Chicago and is available to applicants who are currently enrolled at either the undergraduate or graduate level. Internships are available to all applicants and are dependent on specific needs, projects, and qualifications.

    Qualified applicants should have a demonstrable interest in economics/finance, political science, policy, or other social sciences, as well as comfortable working with data and doing qualitative and quantitative research. Familiarity with China and Chinese language is strongly preferred.

    These are paid positions and are available on a rolling basis throughout the academic year and summer. Interested candidates should send their CV and other relevant materials to info@macropolo.org. (Scroll down for current specific openings)

    Job Opportunities