Xie received his bachelors degree from Huazhong University of Science and Technology in 1980 and worked as a reporter at the People’s Daily from 1980 to 1983. He joined the DRC after receiving a masters degree in engineering from the Machinery Industry Automation Research Institute in 1986.
During his 20-year tenure at the DRC (1986–2006), he participated in and headed many research projects and held many positions, including assistant researcher, researcher, assistant head of the Information Center, assistant director of the Intelligence Center, director of the General Office (Personnel Bureau), secretary general of the Academic Committee, member of the DRC’s Party Leadership Group (PLG), and deputy director of the DRC. Xie also went abroad to study in the United States and England. In 1991 and 1992, he was a visiting scholar at Princeton University’s economics department. In 1993, he completed an executive program at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government and Public Administration. In 2006, Xie completed another executive program at the Judge Business School, Cambridge University.
Xie’s major research areas include macroeconomic policies, economic development, regional development strategies, and enterprise reform. Some of the more significant projects which Xie directed or co-directed at the DRC include a World Bank Assisted Program on Chinese property policies, a United Nations Development Program on comprehensive research into economic development policies and planning, an Asian Development Bank Technical Assistance Program on strategic research on China’s regional development, and other projects with the National Natural Science Foundation of China, State Science and Technology Commission.
In addition to his work at the DRC and the NBS, Xie has contributed as an adviser to the Consultative Committee of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences. He is also a faculty member and adviser to doctoral students at the Huazhong University of Science and Technology. Since November 2007, he has been an adjunct faculty member at Tsinghua University’s School of Economics and Management. Xie is also a current member of the People’s Bank of China’s Monetary Policy Committee, a member of the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection and of the 17th Communist Party of China Central Committee, secretary of the PLG at NBS, one of three vice-chairpersons and one of five member representatives for China at the 2007 UNESCO Statistical Commission. In 2007 he led overseas delegations to Germany and Austria.
Since Xie became the NBS commissioner in October 2006, he has emphasized the need for cleaner and clearer statistical standards and improved accuracy and fairness in data collection. He is an advocate of new statistical methods and for improving economic, social, and environmental statistics. In January 2007, he openly stated his unwillingness to make any forecast on the Chinese economy for the year 2007, as he reasoned that any forecast would have the potential to affect data collection. Xie also spoke openly on China’s Second Agricultural Census 2006/2007 (the first was in 1996), reporting that in the efforts to ensure that census workers followed procedures and did not fabricate figures, 40 cases of false information collection had been uncovered.
As NBS commissioner, Xie has made many public appearances and speeches on the current economic situation. With regard to China’s continuous economic boom, Xie is in agreement with other economists and fiscal experts, seeing the need to cool the economy, control inflation, and slow economic growth to a reasonable level using macroeconomic control measures in moderation, including fiscal and monetary policies.
Xie is also a current member of the People’s Bank of China’s Monetary Policy Committee, a member of the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection and of the 17th Communist Party of China Central Committee.
In addition, Xie is a prolific writer. His articles have appeared in journals and newspapers including the China Economic Times, China Securities, Economic Research, Economics Information, Management World and the People’s Daily. He has also authored and co-authored many works. Select works since 2000 include China Real Estate Taxation System Proposition (2006), China’s Real Estate Taxation System (2005), Road to Urbanization with Chinese Characteristics* (2004), Thirty Key Issues Related to Further Reform (2003), Fiscal Control and Reform* (2001), Real Estate: Strategic Development and Countermeasures* (2000), and Annual Collection of Chinese Economic Specialists’ New Thinking (2000, 2001). Xie won the Sun Zhifang Economics Prize in 1990 and 2000, as well as the National Science and Technology Award, and the title of State Council’s Exceptional Contribution Specialist in 1996.