China’s global footprint is growing at an increasing rate, especially in the developing world, where a need for infrastructure and investment is fuelling a huge expansion of Chinese presence in the form of private sector actors, state-owned enterprises, workers and migrants. This research spoke aims to uncover, through forensic empirical research, how this economic engagement is unfolding, including, who, how, where and why. While the geopolitical and strategic implications will be important to this research, it will be only one dimension of the spoke. Its research will seek to understand the impacts on regional societies and economies, both positive and detrimental of China’s “Going Out” policy and the “Belt and Road Initiative”. This spoke will thus have a clear goal of understanding the “lived experience” “on the ground” with regard to Global China, rather than being restricted to the “high politics” of diplomacy and strategy. It will focus initially on China’s presence and impacts in Southeast Asia and Pacific Island nations, reflecting the strengths of the ANU. The spoke will be open to examining China’s role elsewhere, including South Asia, the Middle East and Africa, with a view to gaining the benefits of comparative study.