top of page
Alex Headshot.jpg

Dr. Alexander TRAUTH-GOIK

CDA Corresponding Researcher, Australia and Austria

Alexander Trauth-Goik is a post-doctoral researcher at the Department of East Asian Studies, University Vienna. Since September 2022 he has been working as part of the European Research Council (ERC) grant project: Engineering a Trustworthy Society: The Evolution, Perception and Impact of China’s Social Credit System. The goal of the Social Credit System is to promote trust and integrity by gathering data on individuals, companies and organisations and then utilise rewards and penalties to influence behavior. This project challenges conventional thinking about government's role in regulating social and economic interactions and is considered a key aspect of China's alternative form of governance to liberal democracy.


Before coming to Vienna Alex was a doctoral student in the School of Humanities and Social Inquiry at the University of Wollongong, Australia, where he was the recipient of an Australian Government Research Scholarship. His doctoral thesis used qualitative methods to evaluate state and citizen interpretations and engagements with the Chinese Social Credit System.

Alex has been learning Mandarin Chinese for ten years. In 2016 he studied Chinese language at Shanghai International Studies University as part of the New Colombo Plan Scholarship program. His Honours thesis which examined China’s changing engagement with multinational peacekeeping received first class honours.


Alex has developed a significant body of work in this emerging interdisciplinary field, drawing on research and theories from sociology and political science to contribute to our understanding of the Social Credit System as well as policy making and implementation in China in the digital era. His work has appeared in The Conversation, the Journal of Contemporary China, Surveillance and Society, and more. Alexander has also presented lectures on topics related to his research for Arizona State University, Griffith University, Melbourne University, and the University of Oslo, among others. 

See his full CV here

University of Vienna

Department of East Asian Studies

Spitalgasse 2, Hof 2 (Campus),

1090 Wien



Selected Publications


Trauth-Goik, Alexander. 2023, “Civilized cities or social credit? Overlap and tension between emergent governance infrastructures in China”, Global Media and China,

Trauth-Goik, Alexander, and Pierre S. “What’s New about the New Social Credit (Draft) Law?,” 9Dash, December 21, 2022. Available:

Trauth-Goik, Alexander, and Chuncheng Liu. 2022, “Black or Fifty Shades of Grey? The Power and Limits of the Social Credit Blacklist System in China”, Journal of Contemporary China pp. 1–17. Available:


Trauth-Goik, Alexander, and Ausma Bernot. 2021. “Decentralising Data Collection and Centralising Information in the People’s Republic of China: Decentralise Manage and Service Reforms.” Surveillance & Society. Available:'s_Republic_of_China_Decentralise_Manage_and_Service_Reforms

Bernot, Ausma, Alexander Trauth-Goik, and Sue Trevaskes. 2021. “China’s ‘Surveillance Creep’: How Big Data COVID Monitoring Could Be Used to Control People Post-Pandemic.” The Conversation. Available:

Bernot, Ausma, Alexander Trauth-Goik, and Susan Trevaskes. 2021. “Handling COVID-19 with Big Data in China: Increasing ‘Governance Capacity’ or ‘Function Creep’?” Australian Journal of International Affairs 1–7. doi: 10.1080/10357718.2021.1956430. Available:

Trauth-Goik, Alexander. 2020. “Repudiating the Fourth Industrial Revolution Discourse: A New Episteme of Technological Progress.” World Futures 1–24. doi: 10.1080/02604027.2020.1788357. Available:

Trauth-Goik, Alexander. 2019. “‘Constructing a Culture of Honesty and Integrity’: The Evolution of China’s Han-Centric Surveillance System.” IEEE Technology and Society Magazine 38(4):75–81. doi: 10.1109/MTS.2019.2948444. Available:

bottom of page