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News from NIAS

Roundtable Discussion: Assessing China’s Eco-cities

Friday, October 30, 2015 - 14:00 to 16:00

Roundtable discussion with Professor Cunkuan BAO, Department of Environmental Sciences and Engineering, Fudan University - one of China’s leading authorities on eco-cities. The meeting is an extra-ordinary opportunity for practitioners and academics working in the field of eco-cities to familiarise themselves with the latest policy developments and challenges facing eco-cities in China.

More information here

Venue: Landscape Architecture and Planning, UCPH: Meeting Room ‘Byen’, Rolighedsvej 23, 1958 Frederiksberg C, Denmark

New SUPRA Students at NIAS

We warmly welcome two new SUPRA Students at NIAS!


Pan Cheng-Yu, PhD, University of Jyväskylä

Topic: Social Inclusion through vocational education and training: A crosscultural perspective from special educational needs teachers in Finland and Taiwan



Ornpim Sugannasil, MA, Uppsala University

Topic: Under the Proscenium: Lives at the Crossroads of Circus and International Aid in Battambang, Cambodia

Monuments in the Landscape: Proof of Native Customary Land Rights With a Focus on the Kelabit of Sarawak

Thursday, October 1, 2015 - 13:15 to 14:15

Ramy Bulan, PhD Associate Professor, Faculty of Law, University of Malaya Head, Centre for Malaysian Indigenous Studies, University of Malaya, Visiting Researcher, NIAS, University of Copenhagen.

Venue: NIAS Meeting Room (18.1.08), Øster Farimagsgade 5, DK-1353 Copenhagen K, Denmark.

The seminar is free and open for all.

Abstract: Indigenous land rights may be derived from positive enactments or through common law which acknowledges that persons in exclusive occupation of land have title that is good against anyone who cannot show better title, or through indigenous peoples (own) legal systems. Under the latter, their rights exist because they are derived from native laws, governance, practices, customs and traditions, which are enforceable by the courts (through doctrine of continuity). Indigenous peoples should be able to rely on the source of land rights that fits their circumstances best. This paper discusses how the Kelabit in Sarawak, are navigating this legal landscape to prove their rights and connection to their traditional territory. With the backdrop of a minimal recognition of occupation under the Sarawak Land Code 1958, and a cut-off date for creation of native customary rights under that legislation, the paper shows how Kelabit occupation, and interaction on their land and territory is evidenced through anthropological and archaeological records as well as historical narratives of their cultural traditions. Unique megalithic and other non-megalithic features, which accompanied the burial and memorialization of loved ones, mark past Kelabit occupation and continuous connection to the Kelabit Highlands. Despite the absence of state demarcated and surveyed boundary, their monuments in the landscape mark their  presence on the land they call their ancestral homeland providing a basis of land rights claims both under their own laws and customs,  and common law, as well as fulfilling the requirements of statute.

India-EU Partnership and Its Significance in the 21st Century World

Tuesday, October 6, 2015 - 10:30 to 12:00

Public guest lectue by Anand Sharma

Anand Sharma is former Union Cabinet Minister in charge of Commerce and Industry and Textiles in the Government of India, and since June 2014 Deputy Leader of opposition in Rajya Sabha, the upper house of the Indian Parliament.

Venue: Faculty of Humanities, Building 27, Njalsgade, room 27.1.47, Copenhagen.

More information here

CANCELLED! Roundtable Meeting: How to Stabilize Sino-US Relations? An Assessment Following Xi Jinping's First State Visit to the US

Monday, October 5, 2015 - 14:00 to 16:00

Venue: NIAS, room 18.1.08, CSS, University of Copenhagen, Øster Farimagsgade 5, 1353 Cph

Speaker: Professor Xiong Zhiyong, one of China’s most prominent scholars on Sino-US relations and China’s foreign policy and particularly well-informed about Beijing’s foreign policy priorities.

Registration and more information here

New SUPRA students at NIAS

We warmly welcome two new SUPRA Students at NIAS!

Priyanka Chakravarty, PhD, University of Oslo

Topic: Right to Public Services Legislations in India: An Analysis from Two Perspectives – the Citizen and the Bureaucracy.




Niina Väisänen, MA, University of Helsinki

Topic: A Proposal for Standardization of Linguistic Terminology used in Teaching Japanese as a Foreign Language in Finland.

New Publication from NIAS Press: End of Empire

We present the website as a newspaper that reports events that occurred 70 years ago, to the day. Each day brings a new edition, and all previous editions continue to be easily accessible. This project is presented not only as a webpage, but also as a printed volume. In the near future, we will produce e-books that present each country’s history in greater depth, as well as an overall e-book. Stay tuned.

We start with a simple premise: events during the one hundred days following Hiroshima had a profound effect on politics and society for decades to come. We make our case through 350 events, nearly 100 vignettes that examine specific ideas in greater depth, and hundreds of photographs that bring the era – and the argument – to life.

That Asia would be transformed can be explained by the previous fifty years of colonial history in combination with the shock of war. How Asia would be transformed is not self-evident, as varying mixtures of local, regional and international influences lent a different flavour to the post-war environment of each state. These distinct post-war environments are captured by the vignettes, which can be read mostly as descriptive exercises, each probing more deeply the political and social dynamics underlying one or a few events. The chronology as a whole has been assembled and curated through a theory-driven, analytic process.

As a whole, the events and vignettes presented here provide a foundation for a wide array of analyses of post-war developments. Our collection is not exhaustive; like all such exercises, reasonable historians can (and surely will) point to ‘crucial’ events not mentioned as well as ‘trivial’ ones that have been included. We encourage these conversations! The project will become even more valuable as people share their insights, experiences, and wisdom on the aspects of this period they view as crucial.



SUPRA Nordic Scholarship for MA and PhD students Spring 2016

Thursday, October 1, 2015

If you are working on a MA or PhD thesis during Spring 2016 and need some inspiration, literature or simply just time to write on your thesis, then NIAS has something to offer: the Nordic Scholarship!

The Nordic Scholarship covers inexpensive travel to Copenhagen, two weeks board and accommodation plus a working place at NIAS! A perfect chance to concentrate on your thesis, have inspirational talks with our researchers or collect material in Northern Europe's most comprehensive Asian studies library.


More information about SUPRA students' experiences at NIAS and practical information as well as application form.

NB: SUPRA scholarships are primarily for students from NNC member institutions.

Deadline for application: 1 October 2015

For more information, please contact

New SUPRA Students at NIAS

The next two weeks we are welcoming two new SUPRA Students:

Jifeng Liu, PhD, Leiden
Jifeng Liu is currently a PhD candidate in sociology of religion at Leiden University Centre for the Study of Religion, the Netherlands. He was a visiting doctoral student of Department of East Asian Studies at the University of Cambridge. Jifeng received his master’s degree in demographic sociology from Xiamen University (China) in 2010. He is focusing on the Christianity’s relevance to the cultural contest with the officially established authority. His doctoral research will be conducted by asking how local people reinterpret the past of Christianity and reproduce church histories that redefine forms of local power structures in contemporary urban China. His fields of interest include sociology of religion, Christianity in contemporary China, immigrant religion in Chinese societies, and social memory.
Piia Ylitalo, MA, Helsinki
Piia Ylitalo is doing an MA at the University of Helsinki on the topic of Nihonjinron, concentrating on the perspective of the readers and their reactions to the Nihonjinron claims.

New SUPRA Students at NIAS

The next two weeks we are welcoming two new SUPRA Students:

Ulrika Hallbäck is doing an MA at the University of Gothenburg with the title: A qualitative thesis about women with disabilities within the organization Disability Research and capacity Development(DRD) and Reaching Out in Vietnam.



Joonas Timonen is doing an MA at the University of Helsinki on the topic: Perceptions concerning Sunnis and Shi’as among the Muslim youth in Finland