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Europe is preparing for the hottest day since 1944, so what better to do than retreat in my cool study and look back. Today we resume our top-5 of most-read stories and some of our top-speakers feature here: Shaun Rein and his book “The End of Cheap China”, and the “healthy” image of McDonald’s in China, Tom Doctoroff and his grim outlook on China’s innovative capacities, Zhang Lijia and the conspiracy theories on the London Olympic Games, and of course Jeremy Goldkorn on Weibo.

This is also a good spot to announce our China Weekly Hangout. On this website we mostly focus on stories from our speakers, picked up by mainstream media, or published on their weblogs. You can follow our announcements on this dedicated webpage, or on my personal Google+ account. We will use our YouTube account for broadcasting, and you can sign up here too.

Calling our China Weekly Hangout a TV-show is probably a bit over the hill, but technology offers the opportunity to bring together people from different continents for an exchange of thoughts, an opportunity we cannot let go. We have been setting op a small China Weekly Hangout team, and will use Google+ for future exchanges.

What we want to do is taking the daily news a step further. We will bring China experts – sometimes or speakers, but not only them – in debates that add a bit more value to those daily messages. Take for example the debate on China’s innovative capacities. Some of our speakers, like Bill Dodson and Tom Doctoroff have a pretty grim outlook on the copy-and-paste talents in China.

And while IMD professor Bill Fischer is not really optimistic about China’s recent developments on innovation, but he has a very different way of defining innovation, for example in his book  The Idea Hunter. Bringing together some of these conflicting ideas seems a useful plan, and it allows it to do a little bit more than just follow the daily publications in other media.

In August we will do a few more tests, as the new applications and other features on the Google+ hangouts are coming in on a weekly basis, and make the usage of this new broadcast technology pretty exiting. Please let me know, if you are interested in joining in any capacity, as audience, expert, panelist or otherwise.

Now back to our top-5 stories for August:

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