HIR Academic Writing Contest Summer 2023 Medal Winners

The Harvard International Review is a quarterly magazine offering insight on international affairs from the perspectives of scholars, leaders, and policymakers. Since our founding in 1979, we've set out to bridge the worlds of academia and policy through outstanding writing and editorial selection.

The quality of our content is unparalleled. Each issue of the Harvard International Review includes exclusive interviews and editorials by leading international figures along with expert staff analysis of critical international issues. We have featured commentary by 43 Presidents and Prime Ministers, 4 Secretaries-General, 4 Nobel Economics Prize laureates, and 7 Nobel Peace Prize laureates.

Inspired by our growing high school readership around the world, we created the Harvard International Review Academic Writing Contest to encourage and highlight outstanding high school writing on topics related to international affairs.

Congratulations to all Summer 2023 medal winners on the quality of your submissions!

Gold Medal

Charles TAN, Shi. Meiling Zhou. Concord College. “Solar Panels Power the World, But Who Gets Left in the Dark?”

Yiqi Wang. Shanghai Starriver Bilingual School. “When a Commodity Becomes a Lifeline: Starlink & the Russia-Ukraine War”

Felicity Wong. Milton Academy. “Cryptographic Emancipation: Blockchain as a Catalyst for Eradicating Child Labor in Cote d’Ivoire”

Yicheng Tang. Shenzhen College of International Education. Yunxian Zhang. BASIS International School Shenzhen. “E—CNY: Innovation, Challenge, and China’s Pioneering Role in the Era of Digital Currency”

Yan Duan. Shanghai Pinghe School. “The Striding Progress of Online Learning in China: Who are Left Behind?”

Wayne Guang-Yong Liang. Prince of Wales Secondary. “From Satoshi to the Steppes: How Bitcoin Destabilized Kazakhstan”

Sidney Wang. Tsinghua International School. “The Long Arm of the LAWS: The Implications of Lethal Autonomous Weapon Systems”

Yifan Jia. Appleby College. “Behind the Great Firewall: Hong Kong’s Technology Future in Jeopardy Three Years After the National Security Law”

Isabella Wu. Abbotsleigh, Wahroonga NSW, Australia. “AI for Small Island Developing States: Bridging Islands, Climate, and Prosperity”

Kewei Li. Keystone Academy. “The Future of DNA Sequencing: From Policy to Diplomacy”

Yifan Xia. YK Pao School. “AI and Blockchain: Ending Female Inequities in South Asian Telemedicine”

Jirui Guo. Shanghai Starriver Bilingual School. “The Ups and Downs of Digital Health”

Yixiao Fu. Hefei Thomas School.“A Bliss-Turned-Curse: The Marginalization of Rural Women Under Surging Technological Development”

Chloe Wu. Hong Kong International School. “Legionnaires Disease: A Result of Inadequate Water Disinfection”

Zejia Zhu. The Thacher School. “Borderless Science: Navigating Scientific Collaboration Amid Turbulent Geopolitics”

Ruoxi Wang. Shenzhen Foreign Languages School. “Throwing Caution to the Wind: The Adverse Impacts of Offshore Wind Farms on Marine Ecosystems”

Silver Medal

Zhuolin Li. Shanghai Pinghe School. “Hashtag Feminism in China: #MeToo and its Online Discontents in the Age of State Surveillance”

Yuehua Lai. Tsinglan School. “Taiwan as A Key Player in the US-China Technology Competition”

Haiyang Zeng. Beijing 101 High School. Jiangnan Lu. Minghang Crosspoint High School “Beneath the Surface: Unraveling China's Fertility Crisis in the Digital Age”

Chen Gao.Shanghai High School International Division. “Unveiling the Metaverse's Vital Role in Africa's Progress: Education, Economy, and Culture”

Cheng Zhang. George School. “The Third Launch of Nuri: North Korea, South Korea, and the Path to Space Militarization”

Lue Fang. Shenzhen Senior High School. “Will Artificial Intelligence “Slaughter” the Human Worker?”

Brian Zhou. Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology. “While the Arctic Looms Large, the Antarctic Treaty is Under Threat”

Guo Zheng. Hangzhou Foreign Languages School. “The Double-Edged Sword of Technology in Dealing with Africa’s Smuggling Problem”

Eric Yang. Hangzhou Xuejun High School. “Another Way Out: Esports Empowering Rural Families in China to Break the Cycle of Poverty”

Ivanka Lee. Cheltenham Ladies College. “Sweet to Green Fuel: The Shift and Future of Biofuels”

Shiping Zhu. Maranatha Christian Schools. “Painting Another Future: AI's Fascinating Role in Global Art Conservation”

Yuze  Liu. BISZ International School Shenzhen. “Byte-Sized Bureaucracy: AI’s Promise and Peril in Modern Governance”

Zhengrui Sun. Hangzhou Foreign Language School Cambridge A-Level Centre. “Surgical Robots: Life Savior or Life Terminator?”

Guo Cheng. Basis International School Park Lane Harbour. “Fungal Futures: A Natural Tech Revolution in the Making”

Xiaoke Yu. Milton Academy. “Expanding Education: Internationalizing Students with Extended Reality”

Youcheng Michelle Xi. Renert School. “Roxham Road: A Small Piece of the Global Migration Issue”

Lindsay Hong. Choate Rosemary Hall. “The Effects of Mass Surveillance: How China’s Facial Recognition Technology Harms North Korean Refugees”

Zhengxuan Cao. La Salle Institute. “A New Path Forward: How AI is Revolutionizing Education in South Africa”

Hao Jin. Wesley College. “The Rise of Lithium: Balancing Environmental, Economic, and Social Matters through Global-Local Perspectives”

Yue Gao, Yitian Zhao. Jiangsu Tianyi High School. “Breathing Space: Where Can Migration Surveillance Programs Go in the Information Explosion Age”

Hsiao Yu Chen. Quality School International of Shenzhen. “The Paradigm Shift in Modern Warfare: Analyzing Technological Influence in the Russia-Ukraine Conflict”

Anthony Lee. Milton Academy. “Sustainable Sustenance?: The Global Possibilities of Lab-Grown Meat”

Anaya Sheth. Hill Spring International School. “Pegasus Unleashed: Israel's Spytech Diplomacy”

Cao Bochun. Yali High School.“AI tutor: Solution for China’s Disadvantaged and Under-resourced Children?”

Zhang Yijia. The High School Affiliated to Renmin University of China.“Harnessing Technological Advancements for Global Healthcare Anti-Corruption”

Junjie Zhang. BASIS International School Park Lane Harbour. “The Rohingya Crisis: Technology's Role in Resolving One of the World's Worst Humanitarian Dilemmas”

Zhikun Chen. Shanghai Yue Kong Pao Senior Secondary School. “Wisdom In the World’s Shadow: How Z-Library’s Shutdown Impacts Global Education”

Zhouyuan Li,Yicheng Liu. Guangdong Country Garden School. “US-China Cooperation on ClimateTechnology amid Volatile Bilateral Relations”

Jinao Wang. Tsinghua International School. “The Race for Quantum Dominance: the Sino-US Trade War on Quantum Computing”

Beichen Zhan. Shanghai Qibaodwight High School. “The Rise of Latin America: Unprecedented Development of Cross-border E-commerce”

Ruilang Li. Shenzhen Senor High School. “Unmasking Algorithmic Bias: Uncovering the Intersection of Racism, Sexism and Marginalization in AI Models”

Yi-Chi Chen. Shanghai High School International Division. “Orchid Nuclear Waste: Beyond Technical Challenge, a Social Concern”

Yu-You Chuang. Kang Chiao International School Taipei Campus. “Bill C-18, USB C, and Control: The Regulation– and Retaliation– of Big Tech”

Wenyi Ouyang. Shenzhen College of International Education. “Escaping the “Coronopticon”: China’s blatant human rights violations driving an expatriates’ Exodus”

YuTong Wu. Chengdu No.7 High School International Department. “Overshadowed AI Annotators: The Low Life Brought by High Tech”

Isabella Ziye Huang.Stanford Online High School. Alex TY Wang. Shanghai American School. “From Innovation to Invasion: The Intricacies of Tech-Driven Domestic Abuse”

Sicheng Nie. International School of Nanshan Shenzhen. “Water Diplomacy: The Silent Struggle for H2O in South Asia”

Yicheng Zhu. Shanghai World Foreign Language Academy. “Black Horse or Smokescreen: Evaluation of Blockchain Technology In Monitoring Conflict Minerals in the DRC”

Ruibin Liu. UWC Changshu China. “Reaching the Mind: The Looming Challenges of Neurorights”

Xiaorui Xiong. Shenzhen Middle School. “Bridging the Invisible Abyss: Access and Capability in Digital Education”

Siyuan Shui. Community School of Naples. “A Small Persian Gulf Nation is Quietly Becoming a Rising Power”

Ziheng Liu. Sendelta International Academy. “Traditional Medicine's Role in Modern East Asian Healthcare”

Lingyue Wang. Nanjing Jinling High School International Department. “Transition to the Information Age: Global Paradox of the E-Mail-Order Brides Industry”

Yian Xiao. Sedbergh School, Fuzhou. “Digital Renaissance in Learning: Bridging the Gap with the Internet”

Arthur Hu. Germantown Academy. “Terahertz Imaging: A Potential to Stimulate International Cooperation in Combating Drugs”

Lauren Lee. Busan Foreign School. “ Blockchain: The Secret to Stable, Sustainable Energy?”

Pinxuan Guo. Lake Forest Academy. “Navigating the Road Ahead: Preparing for the Impact of Autonomous Driving”

Yanlin Chen. Shenzhen College of International Education.“Ectogenesis: A Possible Resolution to the International Controversies over Surrogacy”

Aditya Varma. Syosset Senior High School. “The Unspoken Truth about Weight Loss Drugs”

Shuo Li. Shandong Experimental High School. “The Forgotten Problem: the Herbicide Pollution of International Aquifers”

Ningyue Tang. RCF experimental school. “Scams and Slaves in Southeast Asia: Cybercrime in Cambodia”

Bronze Medal

Qianhui Huang. Xi'an Gaoxin No.1 High School International Course Center. “Understanding Artificial Limbs: Principles, Current Perspectives, and Future Directions”

Yuwei Zhang. Shanghai Shangde Experimental School. “Unveiling Hope and Hurdles: CAR-T Therapy's Odyssey through Medical Innovation and Financial Realities”

Xinrui Li. Beijing National Day School. “Regenerating Biocapacity: From the Haber-Bosch Process to Emerging Agricultural Technologies”

Yuxuan Huo. Keystone Academy. “The Dilemma of Trust: Supply Chains in Business Entities”

Lingran Hu. Dulwich College Suzhou. “Autistic Children’s Treatment in Sub-Saharan Africa: Technology is the Key”

Angela Yuhan Zhang. Shanghai High School International Division. “The Role of Technology in the Indian Human Trafficking Crisis”

Zhuoyao Li. Xi'an Shi Tieyi Zhongxue. “Live-Streaming E-Commerce: East and West”

Xiaoya Du. The High School Affiliated to Renmin University of China. “Tuvalu: Re-applying the Definition of Nations to a Digital Country”

Yujing Piao. United World College Changshu China. “Unmasking Deception: How Deepfakes Are Rewriting the Rules of Cybersecurity”

Yihan Wang. No. 2 High School of East China Normal University. “Challenges and Chances: Eco-cooperation Between China and Mongolia”

Jiaxin Jiang. Basis International Parklane Harbour. “International Trade Gone Wrong: the Overlooked Export of Trash from Developed Countries to Developing Ones”

Yuming Li. International Department, The Affiliated High School of South China Normal University. “Challenges and Uncertainties in Post-COVID Labor Migration in Asia”

Zihan Wang. Zhengzhou Foreign Language School. “Improving Mental Health in Rural Chinese Students: An Impossible Task?”

Noritaka Okada. K. International School Tokyo. “Artificial Intelligence’s Impacts/ Potential Impacts on International Food Supply and Agricultural Industry”

Jimin Han. QSI International School of Shenzhen. “Digital Lifeline: How Mobile Money Empowers Underserved Communities”

Xueying Qiu. Nanjing Foreign Language School Xianlin Campus. “Convenience or Loss— A Look into the Future of Voice Assistants”

Siheng Niu. Shanghai Pinghe School. “Unveiling the Influence of Memes as Political Propaganda”

Brook Huang. YK Pao School. “Charging Ahead: China's Dominance in Global EVs and the Geopolitical Repercussions”

Jiarui Shi. The High School Affiliated to Renmin University of China. “AI Chatbot: An Immature Friend or an Artificial Liar”

Jack Zhang. The High School of Saint Thomas More. “Folating to a Sustainable Future: The Rise of Photovoltaics”

Seoyoon Lee. Harvard-Westlake School. “Kenya, the EU, and the Struggles of Digital Identity Implementation”

Ziqi Tan. International Department, Affiliated High School of South China Normal University. “Congo’s Cobalt: The Hidden Exploitation behind the Battery Industry”

You You. Detroit Country Day High School. “The Transportation Dilemma behind the European Rice Crisis”

Wenqian Hong. Notre Dame Belmont High School. “Technological Development or Human Rights Violation? The Case Study of Fukushima Wastewater”

Suya Xiong. Nanjing Foreign Language School. “Breaking Barriers and Building Bridges: WeChat Pay's Impact on Nepal's Financial Inclusion and Global Market Progress”

Hajoon Song. International School of Beijing. “Precision Agriculture: Balancing Innovation and Tradition in the Digital Age”

Chenyu Fang. Shanghai Pinghe School. “The Power Dynamics in the Entertainment Industry—What Social Media Brought Behind the Glamor”

Chao Hsuan Yu. Shanghai Qibao Dwight High School. “Silent Strategies and Shifting Alliances: Decoding South Korea's Enigmatic Role in the US-China Chip War”

Abigail Jun Chang. Shanghai American School Pudong Campus. “ AI Chatbots: Prospect and Threat to Educational Equality”

Wantong Yu. Concordia International School Shanghai. “Afghanistan’s Biggest Project Yet: The Qosh Tepa Canal”

Ji Yu. Tianjin Foreign Language School. “Crypto Pirate: How Cryptocurrency Has enabled a Rogue State to Expand its Cyber Criminal Capabilities”

Minyi Zhang. Sendelta International Academy. “Economic Dynamics of East Asia: A Tapestry of Resilience and Innovation”

Liu Hengyue. Veritas Collegiate. “ICT and Digital Empowerment: Bridging Gender Gaps in Sub-Saharan Africa”

Hanrui Li. Shanghai Starriver Bilingual School. “Whispers of Change: Exposing the need for Algae-based Bioplastics in a Plastic-stricken World”

Jason Zou. Dulwich College Beijing. “Generation Genocide: Facebook as a Catalyst for Racial Violence”

Ruosi Hu. International Department, The Affiliated High School of SCNU. “The Proper Level of Technology in Education”

Siqi Wang. Nanjing International School. “Addressing AI-driven gender bias from within the tech industry”

Ashton Kong. Harrow School. “Fighting Antimicrobial Resistance One Cup of Milk at a Time — An Artificial Intelligence Revolution in Curing Cow Mastitis”

Yuyang Zhang, Ziyu Li. St. Stephen's Episcopal School. “Systematic Racism Behind AI Algorithms: Exclusion, Effect, and Enactment”

Jiahe Liu. Beijing Mingcheng Academy. “Can Digitalization Empower the Elderly? Digital Divide and Digital Literacy of the Elderly in China”

Gongyu Pan. North Cross Shanghai. “African "Leapfrogs": Supported or Strangled by a Chinese Belt”

Ruoheng Liu. Hefei Thomas School. “China's EV Industry Conundrum:Environmental Savior or Emerging Menace?”

Zhiyang Wang. High School Affiliated to South China Normal University. Qincong Tan. “Navigating the Shadows: The Lurking Potential Energy Crisis in Europe”

Zonghang Wu. Nanjing Foreign Language School. “AI M.D. Will See You Now: Progress, Collaboration, and Limitations in the Healthcare Field”

Qiyue Liao. Shenzhen College of International Education. “The Other Silk Road: How China’s Digital Partnership Promotes African Order”

Yichen Hu. Shanghai Minghang Crosspoint Academy. “GenAI in Education: Balancing Potential and Peril”

Meilin Zhao. Berkshire School. “An International Review of Technological Innovation in Policing: Unmasking the Hidden Divide Between Developed and Undeveloped Countries”

Liang-Ying Chen. Kang Chiao International School. “THE SILENT STRAIN: The Role of Unrealistic Ideals in Teenage Depression via Social Media”

Zixi Zeng. Shenzhen College of International Education. “From Bits to Bank: Exploring the Impact of Cryptocurrencies on Traditional Financial Systems”

Mingyang Tan. The High School Affiliated to Renmin University of China. “Shaping the Labor force: The Multifaceted Impact of AI on Employment”

Zhu Zhi. Shanghai Qibao Dwight High School. “Artificial Intelligence: A Promising Solution to Cyberbullying for Students in China”

Muxi Lin. Victoria Junior College. “Surfing Beyond the Sea: Maldives’ Innovation and Entrepreneurship Policies in the Digitalized World”

Yixuan Shen. The Hill School. “Untangling the Web: Navigating Thailand's Complex Role in Cyber Scams within Southeast Asia”

Yixuan Zhan. Guangdong Country Garden School. “Virtual Reality Clashes with Educational Reality: The Development and Impacts of VR in Education Sector”

Ziying Lu. Huafu International Department. “Hidden Gems: Protecting the Overlooked World Heritage Sites”

Ricky Weng. Shanghai World Foreign Language Academy. “Novel High-speed Rail Technologies: Pitfalls and Potential”

Chenyu Zhou. Shanghai Pinghe School. “Technology and Equity for the Elderly: Left Behind in the Digital Age”

Stella Wang. Beijing City International School. “Still Waters Run Deep(fakes): The Gendered Exploitation Through AI Deepfakes”

Jingyi Wan. The Experimental High School Attached To Beijing Normal University. “Social Media’s Benefits for Oppressed Groups Re-discussed: Status Quo of the Online Muslim Community”

Ziyang Zhang. Hefei NO.1 High School. “AI and The Evolving Landscape of Global Sound Copyrights in China”

Hanning Gu. Markville Secondary School. “Internet Development: Empowering Females in South Asia”

Hongxi Qian. The Stony Brook School. “A Drinkable Problem: Wastewater Recycling”

Tianrui Cai. Shanghai Pinghe School. “The Global Challenges and Promises of Electric Vehicle Batteries”

Courtney Xia, Karen Sheng. Shanghai American School Pudong. “Wearable Plant Sensor”

Manqing Zhu. Nanjing Jinling High School. “ Wild West in Space: Promises and Risks of Asteroid Mining”

Victor Ni. Canberra Grammar School. “Africa’s Expanding Technology Ecosystem: The Opportunities and Challenges it Presents”

Wanqing Yang. Hangzhou Foreign Languages School. “Behind the TikTok Ban:Technology Competition in Sino-American Strategic Rivalry”

Siyun Liang. The High School Affiliated to Renmin University of China. “Transforming Africa into Self-Reliant Agricultural Powerhouses”

Hengrui Zhu. BASIS International School Park Lane Harbour. “Technology: The Panacea for the Modern Refugee Hyprocrisy?”

Qintong Dai. The Loomis Chaffee School. “Technological advancements in Archaeology in the South China Sea”

Jincheng Li. Vanke Meisha Academy. “A Tale of Two Terrors: Nuclear Wastewater and Ocean Acidification”

Chen-Jui Chang, Shin-Chien Chan. Pu Tai Senior High School. “Facial Recognition Technology: A Double-Edged Sword of Innovation and Intrusion”

Yaozhi Kang. BeiJing Normal University · Hong Kong Baptist University - United International College. “Artificial Intelligence: An Enabler or Destroyer of Educational Justice and Social Mobility in Rural China?”

Ziqian Zhang. Shenzhen College of International Education. “Cultivating Knowledge: Bridging Gaps in China's Sexual Education Through Technology”

Inseop Park. Chadwick International School. “Beyond Borders: Exploring the Bold New Era of Unmanned Combat Systems”

Emma Chuo. Taipei European School. “Your Face Says It All: Artificial Intelligence and Biometrics Technology in Security”

Yuxuan Mao. Zhengzhou Foreign Language School. “AI Recruiting: Balancing Efficiency and Inclusivity”