Jining (simplified Chinese: 济宁; traditional Chinese: 濟寧; pinyin: Jǐníng) is a prefecture-level city in southwestern Shandong province, People's Republic of China. It borders Heze to the southwest, Zaozhuang to the southeast, Tai'an to the northeast, and the provinces of Henan and Jiangsu to the northwest and south respectively. Jining, which is located right to the north of the Lake Nanyang (Chinese: 南阳湖; pinyin: Nányáng Hú), is today the northernmost city reachable by navigation on the Grand Canal of China.
The name Jining was first given to the region in the year 1271 during the Song dynasty, although the exact area and type of administrative district it refers to have varied over the centuries. Jining has several distinctive associations in Chinese history and culture, as in antiquity it was the birthplace and home of Confucius, along with many of his more famous disciples, including Mencius. Temples to a number of these philosophers still exist in various parts of the prefecture. Liangshan, a county of Jining, is also famous as the principal setting of the Chinese literary classic, ''Water Margin''.
The prefecture-level city of Jining administers 12 county-level divisions, including 2 district, 3 county-level cities and 7 counties.
Jining is situated in a coal mining area in the southwest of Shandong. An industrial city, Jining has a coal-fired power station, the Jining Power Plant. The city is served by Jining Airport.
- Confucius (551 – 479 BC), central Chinese thinker, founder of Confucianism (main temple and tomb in Qufu)
- Zengzi (505 BC - 436 BC), Chinese philosopher and author, principal lineage protector and promoter of Confucianism
- Mencius (372 – 289 BC), Chinese thinker, a principal interpreter of Confucianism (main temple in Zoucheng)
- Yan Hui (521 BC - 490 BC), one of the famous disciples of Confucius (temple in Qufu)
- Lu Ban (507–440 BC), Chinese engineer, philosopher, inventor, military thinker
- Zuo Qiuming (5th century BC), Chinese court writer of the State of Lu, and contemporary of Confucius during the Spring and Autumn period.
- Xiaoting Pan (1982-), the first professional pool player from China to play full-time on the Women's Professional Billiard Association (WPBA) tour.
- Kong Shangren (1648 - 1718), a Chinese Qing Dynasty dramatist and poet best known for his chuanqi play The Peach-Blossom Fan