From the Publisher. Young, enthusiastic, and ambitious—that was how the Dutch architect John van de Water made his way to rapidly modernizing China in 2004. His ambition was to put the internationally appreciated body of ideas produced by NEXT Architects, of which he is a partner, into practice in that country. Hectic years followed, with more than a million square meters of realized projects on Chinese soil. The boundaries of his Western frame of reference had to be continually reviewed in the light of the Chinese context. A wide range of situations and clashes between Western and Chinese thinking occurred: incomprehension, confrontation, misunderstandings, acceptation, realization, sympathy, and—ultimately—added value. You Can't Change China, China Changes You is van de Water's personal, disarming, and occasionally hilarious account of this fascinating and challenging quest for an authentic architecture.