Hey! I'm Christina Xu.

I'm an independent ethnographic researcher, writer, and chaos wrangler based in New York.

Photo of Christina Xu. Photo by Tricia Wang

Photo by Tricia Wang

Find me on the internet at:

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I love helping people understand each other through research, writing, and cultural translation. I believe in designing communities and systems that enable sustainable creativity and redistribute power. I'm on a lifelong mission to eat every delicious fruit in the world.

I'm currently available for freelance research projects, strategic advising (by day or as part of a larger project), and speaking engagements. If you share my values and want to work with me, let's talk!

Current/Ongoing Projects

  • catalyzing and community-building for Letters for Black Lives, a set of collaboratively written and translated resources for facilitating conversations around social justice.
  • writing and producing Multi Entry, a collection of essays and media that investigate the experiences of young creative people in China. The project was made possible by 231 Kickstarter backers in August of 2015.
  • teaching Entrepreneurial Design at the School of Visual Arts' Interaction Design MFA program along with Gary Chou (spring semesters only).
  • funding cool projects as part of Awesome Foundation NYC. Apply if you've got a great idea that could use $1000!

Past Projects

  • running Breadpig, a sidekick service for independent creators. Between 2010 and 2014, I handled all aspects of operations and helped to produce $2 million worth of crowdfunding campaigns.
  • serving as the Chancellor for the Institute on Higher Awesome Studies, taking on things like project managing the redesign of the Awesome Foundation website and organizing the first Awesome Summits.
  • co-founding and running ROFLCon, a biannual internet culture conference/convention that ran from 2008-2012.

My work has led to press coverage and profiles from publications like TIME, the Washington Post, CCTV America, BBC Worldwide, WBUR’s On Point with Tom Ashbrook, Paper Magazine, the Atlantic, and NYT Magazine.

I also serve as an advisor to Orbital (a supportive space for independent creators), the Data & Society Research Institute (a think/do tank focused on social/cultural/ethical issues around data), and the Fine Cacao and Chocolate Institute (chocolate!).

Selected Talks & Spiels

Want me to come to your conference/company/college to talk about any of my projects? Email me! I promise to include at least one cute animal picture in the slide deck.

Signal, Space, Structure: Designing for Communities of Interest - IDEO Shanghai, May 2015
A simple framework for thinking about building communities of interest.

Stop Blowhard Syndrome - the Internet, Feb 2015
A short essay that examines the opposite of impostor syndrome—blinding self-delusion—which is maybe the thing we should be pathologizing.

It’s Dangerous to Go Alone (text) - XOXO, Sept 2013
An epic origin story shouldn’t be required for independent creators to be successful. It made some people sad, but in a good way.

Your Project Deserves a Good Death - Brio, Apr 2013
Every project comes to an end, so let’s get better at planning for project death!