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2019 Work Plan for the Centre for East and South-East Asian Studies

General Introduction

Since 1 January 2019, the Centre belongs to the Joint Faculties of Humanities and Theology where it is a section at the History Department, whereas the Asia Library now is the third faculty library. The Centre continues to be headed by a director (avdelningsföreståndare) at the same time as a new strategic and advisory board has been appointed (see directives). The Asia library is headed by the faculty head librarian in cooperation with the Centre (according to a general agreement). The Centre continues to have an interdisciplinary focus and the Master Programme remains a master in social sciences. The Centre and the Asia Library also remains in the same current location.

During the year the Centre will focus on adapting to its new organizational role while at the same time fulfilling its responsibility to ensure interdisciplinary and cross-faculty collaboration in the fields of education and research. The Centre will also continue to strengthen its national, European, and international networks. During the year the Centre will develop a new strategic plan for the period 2020-2022. This will be discussed at a kick-off meeting in August also attended by the new board.

Organizational and Administrative Work

During 2019, the Centre will focus on its integration at the History department and in the Joint Faculties of Humanities and Theology. This includes learning about policies and regulations, developing new routines in administrative and educational work, and taking part in different networks and joint bodies. Another important task will be to reach out to student and staff at the faculties and ensure visibility of the Centre and its research, education, and events through participation in different bodies and publishing information about Centre events in the HT newsletter etc.


The Centre will continue its work to strengthen student recruitment through marketing, collaboration with the Foreign Policy Association, outreach to undergraduate students, and alumni networking and events. New forms of marketing will be tried and evaluated, including use of social media (e.g. Instagram), advertisement in student papers, and a photo contest etc. The Centre is also developing and diversifying its course content through its first BA level course and through the establishment of an internship course. The possibility to offer additional courses during 2020 will be investigated. In addition, the Centre will investigate the possibility to arrange a fieldwork course in Korea.

The Centre is updating its current course plans in accordance with faculty requirements, and will during the year pay particular attention to issues such as examination and quality in education in accordance with the faculty plan for 2019.

Another priority during 2019 will be to develop a Ph.D. programme so that a call for two Ph.D. students can been announced in January 2020 with a start date in September 2020. In December 2019, the Centre will also as part of a conference hold its first Ph.D. course/workshop.

International Networking, Visiting Scholars, and Collaborations

The Centre will during 2019 continue to develop its international network with a particular focus on the European Alliance for Asian Studies where the Centre since 2018 is a member institution. The alliance is an important platform for collaborating with leading Asian centres in Europe with respect to education and research. Possibilities to use Erasmus for teacher exchange will also be explored. Further networking with selected Asian studies centres in the US and Asia will be discussed. In addition, the Centre will work to develop closer ties with the Nordic Centre at Fudan University and with Korean Universities.

The initiative started in 2018 to host Swedish and Nordic Ph.D. students will be continued.


A number of new research projects started last year and two additional projects begin in 2019. The coming year will therefore only see some smaller applications (two researchers are involved in Pufendorf applications) and one or two major applications.

In view of a favourable financial situation and a need to strengthen educational and research competence on contemporary Japanese and Korean societies a postdoctoral position will be announced in the spring with a start date in August 2019. In addition, the Centre will explore the possibility to host one to two senior scholars per year working on topics within the
Centre’s prioritised research and also fund their travel and accommodation for 1-2 months (to possibly commence in late 2019 and with a budget of 70 000 SEK per year).

The Centre will organize the 2019 NIAS NNC conference and Ph.D. workshop to be held 2-6 December. The topic is Digital Asia and the Centre sets aside around 100 000 SEK for co-financing the conference.

2019 is thus generally a time of consolidation as the Centre prepares a new strategic plan and researchers focus on their on- going projects, fieldwork and some major conferences. Several researchers will attend and organize panels at the Association of Asian Studies (AAS) annual conference in March (Denver) and at the International Covenant on Asian Studies (ICAS) in July (Leiden) in addition to other conferences during the year.

Public Events

During 2019, the Centre continues with its open lecture series on Korea with support from the Academy of Korean Studies. It will also arrange other open lectures on timely topics. The Centre has purchased a range of new documentary films and will throughout the year screen a selected number of these films. In addition book launches and photo exhibitions will also be organised. The Centre is holding its first photo contest for students at Lund University and selected photographs will be exhibited in the library.

Asia Library

With the organizational change, the new working group responsible for the Asia library will develop new routines for col- laboration between librarians and teachers/researchers (in accordance with an agreement reached between the HT libraries and the Centre in October 2018). The aim is to ensure that the Asia library continues to be a leading national library through purchase of new relevant literature. Staff and students at the Centre will during 2019 receive information about and benefit from additional resources and support offered by the HT libraries. Prioritized work within education includes updating and developing subject guides and involving librarians in selected courses. For researchers new developments with respect to the handling of research data and open access is a prioritized area.