Asian Studies Days 2019: Science and University Policies in Asia


Science and University Policies in Asia

How Asian countries are building state capacity and sustainability through science and education

University of Turku, November 26-27

Organized in cooperation between the Center for East Asian Studies, University of Turku, and the Finnish University Network for Asian Studies.

Registration to the event is open until November 24: registration form


This year, the goal of the Asian Studies Days is to discuss topical science and university policies in Asian countries. In addition to the recent trends, the topics deal with prospects and challenges in the implementation of those policies, both in domestic and global context.

The theme is topical in several ways. China’s emergence as a science power has raised much attention during the recent years, both within academia and in media. At the same time, many other Asian front-runners of science and technology have been left in shadow: countries such as Japan, South Korea, India, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand have significant science capacities. On the other hand, developing countries in Asia are actively building academic infrastructure. The region has own structures and patterns in science cooperation, supported by ASEAN and regional science powers. In many Asian countries, the role of the government in the steering of academic research and education is getting stronger.

This event will deepen our understanding of the specific features in the academic environment in Asian countries: what should we be aware of when pursuing cooperation with Asian actors. The discussions will help to develop realistic and sustainable cooperation with Asian countries in the field of science, technology and education.

The Finnish University Network for Asian Studies has organized Asian Studies Days annually since 2010. The event provides a national platform for discussions and networking in Asian studies. It brings together a wide community of people from the academia, business, public administration and civil society with a shared interest in Asia.

Photo by Alex Kondratiev on Unsplash


Date: Tuesday  November 26, 12:00-17.00

Venue: Publicum, PUB3

Address: Assistentinkatu 7, Map, Instructions for parking




12:00 Welcoming words

Lauri Paltemaa, Professor, Chair of the Board, University Network for Asian Studies

12:05 Introduction to the theme of the event

Outi Luova, Director of the University Network for Asian Studies

12:15 Keynote presentations, commentaries and discussion

Link to biographies of the keynote speakers

Augmented autocracy: Artificial intelligence and cybernetic governance in China

Christian Göbel, Professor, Department of East Asian Studies, University of Vienna
Comments by Prof Lauri Paltemaa, Centre for East Asian Studies, University of Turku

Science policies in ASEAN countries and the promotion of ecological education and culture 

Ma. Assunta Caoile-Cuyegkeng, Professor, Director of ASEAN University Network (AUN) Thematic Network on Ecological Education and Culture (AUN-EEC), Ateneo de Manila University, the Philippines
Comments by Dr Sari Puustinen, Senior Research Fellow, Coordinator of Sustainable Development Studies, Finland Futures Research Centre, University of Turku

14:15 Coffee break

14:30 Greeting words

Jukka Kola, Rector of the University of Turku

14:40  Panel discussion 

Emerging trends and hot topics in the Asian science field

– Vibodh Parthasarathi, Associate Professor, Jamia Millia Islamia,  New Delhi, India; EDUFI Fellow (2019) and Doctoral Scholar, University of Helsinki
– Kamila Szczepanska, University Lecturer (Japan), Centre for East Asian Studies, University of Turku
– Mari-Anna Suurmunne, Councellor, Education and Science, Embassy of Finland in Beijing
– Mika Tirronen, Councellor, Education and Science, Embassy of Finland in New Delhi
– Anna Korpi, Councellor, Education and Science, Embassy of Finland in Singapore
– Jarkko Mutanen, PhD, coordinator of the FinCEAL Plus BRIDGES Asia

17:00 Reception with light  food and refreshments arranged by the City of Turku at Educarium, next to Publicum

Greeting words by Ulla-Maija Vierimaa, Member of the Turku City Board
Short presentation by Erja Kettunen about Israel Reinius, who defended his China-related thesis in Turku 270 years ago in 1749.



Wednesday, November 27

The doctoral seminar provides an outstanding opportunity to meet other doctoral students whose work focuses on Asia, and to receive feedback from senior researchers who have profound knowledge of the region.

The seminar is open to all PhD candidates in Finnish Universities whose thesis develops new knowledge about Asia (society, politics, economy, business, culture, history, law). PhD candidates are expected to participate either with a research plan, full research paper, or a chapter of the thesis.

The Finnish University Network for Asian Studies will provide free accommodation for one night in a double room and a travel grant  up to 40 euros for PhD candidates who fulfill the following qualifications
– participate in both days of the event
– present a paper at the seminar (research plan, full research paper, or a chapter of the thesis)
– is registered in the Network’s members universities (Aalto, Helsinki, Jyväskylä, Tampere, Turku, Vaasa, Åbo Akademi)
– does not live in Turku region.

Submission of abstracts is open until September 30.

Important dates

September 30: Deadline for abstracts
October 4: Notification of approval
November 17: Deadline for full papers
November 26-27: Asian Studies Days


For more information about the Asian Studies Days, please contact the Director of the Network Outi Luova at outi.luova[at]