This paper discusses government-backed venture capital as a science, technology and innovation (STI) policy instrument from the Chinese perspective. China aspires to overhaul its growth model by vigorously promoting technological innovation and entrepreneurship. Like many other countries, however, funding gaps constrain new technology ventures in the early stages of venture development. To plug this gap, China attempts to use government-backed venture capital as a policy instrument. Super-size central government-backed VCs were set up and dozens of similar schemes are in operation at local levels. This paper provides a case study of such government-backed venture capital schemes in China. It documents the background conditions explaining the country's need for public venture capital, describes the distinct features of program design in such schemes, and assesses the impact of government-backed venture capital.