Ma Jun started his career as an investigative journalist on the environment desk. After years of reporting on environmental disasters and exposing pollution scandals, he realized that there had been a great deal of misinformation due to data discrepancies or cover-ups.
Ma felt that if real change was to happen, it had to come from public awareness and social pressure by the people. So he started and maintained an online repository of environmental data for the public to track the state of pollution around China and take relevant action. Since then, the Institute of Public and Environmental Affairs, which he founded, has become the leading monitor of corporate environmental performance in China.
Pollution is a global problem, and not just in China. However, Ma believes that, with the right momentum and partners, China can take the lead in building an ecological civilization. But this can only happen through the state, market, and civil society moving forward together, with the help of the power of information.