Van Staden is currently the Senior China-Africa Researcher at the South African Institute of International Affairs (SAIIA) in Johannesburg, South Africa’s leading international policy think tank. (SAIIA is not affiliated with the China Africa Project and does not fund, influence, or provide material support.) He completed his Ph.D. in Japanese Studies and Media Studies at the University of Nagoya in Japan in 2008. He expanded his work to comparisons between Japan and China during postdoctoral positions at the University of Stellenbosch and as the SARCHI Chair on African Diplomacy and Foreign Policy at the University of Johannesburg, before joining the Department of Media Studies at the University of the Witwatersrand in 2013. He started in 1998 as a TV reporter for the South African Broadcasting Corporation. Prior to joining SAIIA, van Staden was on the faculty of the Media Studies department at The University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, where he tracked the expansion of Chinese and Japanese media interests in Africa.