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News from NIAS

Opening of the Fudan European China Centre at University of Copenhagen, NIAS

Monday, April 15, 2013 to Tuesday, April 16, 2013

It is a great pleasure to welcome you to the opening and the conference marking the opening of the Fudan European China Centre at University of Copenhagen, NIAS

The conference takes place on Monday, April 15 from 8.50-17.00 at University of Copenhagen in Alexandersalen, Bispetorvet 1-3.
The conference will focus on topical challenges in present day China. Renowned scholars from Fudan University in Shanghai will present new insights on several of their country’s well known and urgent challenges. Danish and European counterparts will add their perspectives and open the floor for discussions. 

The opening ceremony takes place at University of Copenhagen, Committee Room 3, Nørregade 10, on Thuesday 16 April from 15:30 to 17:30. The ceremony is followed by a reception.
Minister for Research, Innovation and Higher Education, Mr. Morten Østergaard, Ambassador of China to Denmark, Mr. Li Ruiyu, Vice-President of Fudan University, Prof. Lin Shangli and Rector of University of Copenhagen, Prof. Ralf Hemmingsen will attend the event.

Please sign up for the events at before April 10.
Please indicate if you wish to sign up for both days or just one of them.

Programmes for both days are attached below.

Current SUPRA students at NIAS

Annemari Kettunen, University of Turku
Topic: Public Discussion on the role of different languages in Hong Kong from 1997 to the present

Mari Anneli Peltola, University of Turku
Topic: Energy policy formation in Japan after Fukushima

Current SUPRA students at NIAS

Iris Chan, University of Turku
Topic: Hong Kong identity in the Hong Kong City-State Autonomy Movement

Nguyen Thanh, University of Oslo
Topic: Health Insurance for the Near poor in Vietnam

Louise Lykke Hvam workplace Student at NIAS

Louise has been a workplace student at NIAS since February.

I am writing my master's thesis on India's Targeted Public Distribution System (TPDS), a large welfare programme to ensure food security among India's poorest households. Through empirical studies I delve into the lifeworlds of programme beneficiaries and seek to understand the role played by TPDS in providing food security and reducing vulnerability at the household level. I also enter the debate on the future of India's food policies and explore the case for replacing TPDS entirely with a direct cash transfer scheme.

Current SUPRA students at NIAS

Angelaka Eva, Lund University
Topic: Barbies and Snow Whites:  Contrasting Identities in Modern Japan”: an ethnography

Valeriya Gazizova, PhD, University of Oslo
Topic: The relationship between institutionalized Buddhism and “folk religion” in the process of religious revival in contemporary Kalmykia

Min Dongchao new researcher at NIAS

Professor Min Dongchao, director of the Centre for Gender and Culture Studies at Shanghai University, has received a Marie Curie International Incoming Fellowship to work with senior researcher Cecilia Milwertz at the Nordic Institute of Asian Studies for two years from April 1, 2013 to March 31, 2015.

Professor Min’s project, ‘Cross-Cultural Encounters — The Travels of Gender Theory and Practice to China and the Nordic Countries,’ is concerned with the cross-cultural translation of knowledge and practices that may or may not take place when different cultures interact, and the resulting production of new knowledge. Taking the travelling routes of gender theory and practices to, and also between, China and the Nordic countries as the empirical object of study, the project will focus on the crucial questions of why and how knowledge travels or fails to.
See interview with Professor Min

Two years on

Today we remember the earthquake and tsunami that struck northeast Japan two years ago and led to the Fukushima nuclear disaster. No doubt most of us have seen the horror images (especially the video record) from that time. These are unforgetable but distance and the passing of time leaches away their impact. It is another matter for the people on the ground, actually having to cope with the aftermath, even now.

The latest Economist notes that today:
... marks the second anniversary of the tsunami that killed 18,500 people in Japan. Good news is scant. Almost 315,000 evacuees still live in cramped temporary housing, and need new homes.
That assessment perhaps is a little unfair. In the last two years, the Japanese authorities have had to cope with the immediate aftermath of an immense catastrophe. If that weren’t enough, also the country’s leadership has had to rethink huge swathes of public policy – not least for energy, climate change, food security, agriculture and the economy – amidst political turmoil at home and with a roller-coaster economic crisis and a deteriorating international security situation impacting from abroad.
The magnitude of this situation is captured in a new book just published by NIAS Press, After the Great East Japan Earthquake: Political and Policy Change in Post-Fukushima Japan, edited by Dominic Al-Badri and Gijs Berends. This book is a little unusual, being written (rather carefully, let’s be frank) by diplomats and policy experts at European embassies to Japan. Rather than simply chronicle the triple disaster, it also explores subsequent shifts in Japanese politics and policy-making to see if the disaster has led to a transformation of the country, a shift in how Japan functions.
The book is now available in Europe and Japan, with copies arriving elsewhere soon.

SASNET meeting with collaboration partners at NIAS in Copenhagen

 From left to right Lars Eklund, Inga-Lill Blomkvist, Jonathan Stoltz, Bernd Wunsch and
 Asger Juel Hansen.

On Friday 15 February 2013, SASNET deputy director Lars Eklund and assistant webmaster Jonathan Stoltz visited the Nordic Institute of Asian Studies (NIAS) in its new premises beautifully located within Copenhagen University’s City Campus at Øster Farimagsgade 5, with a view over the lakes. The aim of the visit was to discuss the continued technical collaboration between SASNET and NIAS in the field of web site management. Lars and Jonathan had a fruitful meeting with NIAS Chief Librarian Asger Juel Hansen and his colleagues Inga-Lill Blomkvist and Bernd Wunsch, to discuss common technical problems and find solutions.

The SASNET–NIAS collaboration consists both of organising joint conferences (the Falsterbo conferences for young Nordic researchers), and joint technical issues like synchronizing and exchanging web based information.
The collaboration was formally initiated in 2011, when SASNET launched its current Drupal CMS system based website, completely redesigned and restructured by Julia Velkova at SASNET, with full assistance from Bernd Wunsch at NIAS. Since then NIAS hosts the SASNET website, and recently a new maintenance agreement for 2013 was signed by the two directors, Dr. Geir Helgesen at NIAS, and Dr. Anna Lindberg at SASNET.

NIAS   has existed for more than 40 years, and is nowadays hosted by and integrated into the University of Copenhagen, but is still mainly funded by the Nordic Council of Ministers under a contract with the institute. NIAS emphasizes research-based knowledge and information on Asia and the institute contributes to the international recognition of and respect for Nordic Asia research. Furthermore, the institute coordinates a Nordic, networked research school, The Asian Century Research School and the NIAS SUPRA Programme for Nordic Master and PhD students.

More information about NIAS.

Street Photography: China twenty years ago

Monday, March 11, 2013 - 08:00 to Wednesday, May 15, 2013 - 23:00

For the next three months NIAS exhibits photos from 1994 by the Danish photographer Kirstine Theilgaard in our new exhibition room at the Social Sciences Faculty Library in Copenhagen. The photos captures central themes in a China transforming from a planned economy into a capitalistic market economy and provides an impression of what China looked like after some ten years of economic reforms.

In the picture you see the NIAS staff preparing the exhibition.

Venue: Gothersgade 140 on the 1 fl of the Faculty Library of the Social Sciences, Copenhagen University

Current SUPRA students at NIAS

Malte Benjamins, Lund University
Topic: The Reasonable State: Controversial Project Siting in Contemporary China

Yen Yin, University of Oslo
Topic: Overseas Chinese in Norway:The history of Chinese immigrants in Norway