This is a short exploration of public space in Beijing (and elsewhere). But how do we define public space and does it exist as such in Beijing? In this short presentation, instead of simply focusing on physical spaces, I will try to capture some of the elements and the practices that make spaces become public. Public space exists and transforms as part of the urbanisation process, which is not simply a material growth but also the way through which Beijingers learn how to deal with the anonymous other. In this sense, I see public space as a subtle, unstable balance where public spaces express and shape the relationships between urbanites.