What is real life? Is life off the beaten path a responsible choice? Is it real? Many people who choose to wander down unconventional paths--especially in Beijing--wonder if everyone else may be somewhere more "real" than they find themselves. Join us for our next Spotlight Dinner with Joan Xu and hear about she's grappled with these questions as she straddled cultural identities, career paths, and life choices, leading to her successful career as a bridge-builder and screenwriter.

Born in the US, Joan moved to Beijing in high school, and caught up with her peers in a local school. After attending Harvard and University of Chicago, Joan wandered through many traditional career paths including academia, consulting, finance, and tech, until finally dinving into the film industry where she now writes action adventure movies.

As a professional storyteller, Joan seeks to help bridge the cultural gap between Chinese and Western audiences, showing that with the right lens, you can understand another person's reality, and tap into the infinite possibilities of life.

There is no extra cost for spotlight dinners. Participants only have to split the cost for the dinner. For this Spotlight Dinner, we are requiring pre-payment for the dinner cost of 70 RMB. There will be no additional cost required on the night of the event. Please email us in advance if you have any dietary restrictions.

Please note that the Spotlight Dinners are female-only events. All other Beijing Women's Network events are open to all genders. Please find out more information about other events here.


  • Joan Xu (Screenwriter)

    Joan Xu


    Joan Xu is a screenwriter based in Beijing, driven by a love of great stories as well as a belief in the importance of popular culture in shaping societal values. She aims to create movies that can represent modern China to global audiences.

    Joan most frequently works in the action adventure genre on China-Hollywood co-productions. Her work includes a Chinese show, “The Circle,” and a feature film, “Dark Heavens.”

    Joan has work experience in finance, tech, and consulting, as well as extensive youth leadership experience. She is a Global Shaper of the World Economic Forum, was a speaker at the 2016 Annual Meeting at Davos, and frequently represents a youth perspective at global political forums.

    Joan holds a BA in Government and Economics from Harvard College and an MA in Cultural Anthropology from the University of Chicago.

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Dinner - General (Sold Out)

This cost covers the price of food. Any additional beverages ordered are at the expense of the individual.

Standard Price RMB 70
Dinner - Vegetarian

This cost covers the price of food. Any additional beverages ordered are at the expense of the individual. NOTE: meals are served family style. Vegetarian dishes are ordered proportionately according to the number of vegetarian ticket holders.

Standard Price RMB 70


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