Confucius Institute at UWA Director Dr Ying Jiang

Confucius Institute at UWA Australian Director Dr Ying Jiang (centre) at the awards ceremony

Confucius Institute at UWA Australian Director Dr Ying Jiang has been named one of the nation's ten most outstanding young Australian-Chinese leaders in the 2018 Golden Wattle Awards.

The Golden Wattle Awards, named after Australia's national flower, are supported by the Australia-China Parliamentary Friendship Group and given to Australian citizens or permanent residents under 40 years old with Chinese heritage. The awards recognise outstanding achievements and contributions to the community.  Finalists this year included prominent leaders from the worlds of business, sport, medicine, art and academia.

During the presentation ceremony held at the University of Sydney on October 19, winners received a message from Prime Minister Scott Morrison, who said:  “All nominees should take pride in the recognition they receive tonight. In a rapidly changing world, it is your passion, courage and leadership that will help drive Australia's economic growth, competitiveness and future prosperity.”

Dr Jiang grew up in China and studied and worked in Switzerland, Scotland and England before she came to Adelaide to pursue a doctoral degree in 2006. In 2008, aged 23, she was selected as one of the 100 outstanding young Chinese leaders in the world by the Hong Kong Dragon Foundation.

Dr Jiang received the award for her contribution and commitment to enhancing understanding between Australia and China. She has participated in and facilitated a number of major transcultural projects. She also runs cross-cultural communication workshops for different sectors including embassies and high-net worth entrepreneurs in both nations.

Her 2012 book Cyber-nationalism in China has been sold and downloaded more than 50,000 times. A recent article “‘Reversed agenda-setting effects’ in China: Case studies of Weibo trending topics”, published by the Journal of International Communications, has become one of the most read articles on Taylor & Francis online.

Dr Jiang said she was inspired by the words of Sir Frank Lowy AC, who referred to migration as "an act of ambition, imagination and bravery" when he delivered the 2018 Lowy Lecture in Sydney on September 13.

"This award is not just for me, it is for the recognition of the courage of all migrants who came to this country for a better life. Let’s carry on our imagination and bravery, not only to realize our ambitions, but also to make a great contribution to this multicultural nation," she said.