Quotas for University Youth League Propaganda Work

Xi Jinping has been heavily promoting ideological orthodoxy among the Party, the press, and the general population. In this quest, new emphasis has been placed on Marxist values in Chinese universities. After Xi put out a call for “ideological guidance” in institutes of higher learning last December, the CCP Central Committee ordered that they “equip teachers and students with ‘socialism with Chinese characteristics.'” Just last week, the Ministry of Education unveiled a ban on college textbooks promoting Western values, prompting former Peking University Law School vice dean Shen Kui to raise constitutional concerns with the ministry’s vague definition of what falls under the banner of “Western values.”

Last March, the (CYL) directed nationwide university branches to utilize the Internet and new media to carry out ideological work (see CDT’s translation of the full directive). Looking to publicly available sources, CDT Chinese editors have gathered more concrete directions for all CYL university branches in nine provinces and cities. These directives include quotas for each university and requirements that these propaganda workers gather information on their fellow students. From the directive to Gansu CYL branches:

"Communist Youth League Committees at all universities and colleges please emphasize the construction of Internet propaganda teams; start timely training programs through various means; enhance the work capabilities of Internet propaganda workers; and push forwards with your work."

“Communist Youth League Committees at all universities and colleges, please emphasize the construction of Internet teams; start timely training programs through various means; enhance the work capabilities of Internet workers; and push forward with your work.”

Content of report: University and college CYL workers shall report the following four types of information to the institution’s departments of the CYL Central Committee and provincial CYL:

  1. Ideological trends among students, mainly including: (1) students’ thinking when school begins in spring and fall each year; (2) students’ reactions to the Two Sessions, important national festivals, memorial days, and important meetings of central authorities; (3) students’ reactions to important policies, especially education, employment, and other policies relevant to students; (4) societal and campus questions of special interest to students; (5) other ideological trends on campus worthy of attention.
  2. Information on the public opinion of students, mainly including: (1) students’ reactions during important, sensitive time periods, and to sensitive problems; (2) students’ opinions on major national and international incidents; (3) incidents on campus or mass incidents; (4) other information regarding students worthy of attention. […] [Chinese]

The quotas of CYL Internet propaganda workers vary from region to region and from university to university, and are generally based on campus size and type of school. For Guangdong:

All university and college CYL committees shall vigorously organize their Internet propaganda teams, and shall assign a designated CYL cadre and a student cadre as leaders of their associated Internet propaganda team. By April 9, 2014, the number of Internet propaganda team members at the undergraduate level should be no less than 2.5% of the total student body; the number of Internet propaganda team members at professional schools, private colleges, independent institutes shall be no less than 1.5% of the total student body. […] [Chinese]

An extensive list of specific numbers and tailored directives for all colleges and universities in Guangdong, Gansu, Guizhou, Zhejiang, Hunan, Liaoning, Sichuan, Jiangsu, and Tianjin are available in the original Chinese. Also see CDT’s translation of the general nationwide CYL directive on university propaganda work and all prior CDT coverage of ideological work.

Translation by Mengyu.