Asian Studies Days 2021

“Post-pandemic reunion”

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.

Organized in cooperation between the Department of History and Ethnology, University of Jyväskylä, and the Finnish University Network for Asian Studies. We thank for the generous funding that the Joel Toivola Foundation has granted for this event under the theme “China studies 2.0”.

Time: November 18-19, 2021
Venue: University of Jyväskylä, online

The events will be arranged online if Covid restrictions are reintroduced.

Registration for the event is open now 
Link to the registration form

Preliminary Programme

Thursday 18th of November 

11-14:30, venue: main building, hall C1

11:00 Welcoming words and introduction to the theme of the event

11:10 -12.30 Panel discussion: Post-pandemic trends in science and education in Asia

The panel addresses current development trends in science and education in Asia, such as shrinking academic freedom, nationalistic tendencies and great power competition, prospects for international cooperation.

You can send questions to the panelists already before the panel to the following email address asianet[at)

– Mari-Anna Suurmunne, Councellor, Education and Science, Embassy of Finland in Beijing
– Anna Korpi, Councellor, Education and Science, Embassy of Finland in Singapore
– Mika Tirronen, Councellor, Education and Science, Embassy of Finland in New Delhi

12:30 – 13:30 lunch break

13.30—14.30 Keynote by Professor Xenia Zeiler, University of Helsinki
Asian Studies beyond Universities: Engaging with Wider Audiences and Public Interest

14:30-16.30 Workshops: Social challenges in contemporary Asia: State-citizen relationships, environment, and technologies

We invite researchers and doctoral candidates affiliated with Finnish universities and research institutions to discuss their ongoing research work under the broad themes of states, technologies and environment. The papers can touch one or more of these themes. Each paper will be allotted 15 minutes, followed by a 15-minute discussion. The parallel workshops will take place in the afternoon on 18th of November. We hope to arrange them at the university of Jyväskylä, but if Covid restrictions will be reintroduced, the workshops will take place online over Zoom. If you wish to present a paper, send a short abstract and register by October 31st using the Asian Studies Days registration form.

Friday 19th of November

10-11:30 Online webinar on the use of digital methods in Chinese studies (co-organized with the China in Europe Network, CHERN)

  • Ask a Question that Can Be Answered: Reflections on Doing Digital Social Research 
    Associate Professor Jun Liu, Department of Communication, University of Copenhagen
  • Researching social unrest in China: a data science toolkit
    Professor Christian Göbel, Department of East Asian Studies, University of Vienna

11:30-17:00 Local parallel events. You can only participate in one of these.

1. Doctoral seminar, local event

More information about the seminar here

2. Information retrieval workshop, hybrid event

The workshop is planned and taught by university lecturer Paavo Arvola, from the Faculty of Information Technology and Communication Sciences at the Tampere University.

Search engines are widely used for information retrieval in many large digital (text) collections such as the Internet. Consequently, information retrieval has become a core digital method – and a crucial skill – for the humanities, social sciences and other research. This workshop provides tools for a more effective information retrieval from the Internet in all languages (Chinese, Thai, …)

This workshop consists of:

    • lectures about information retrieval with search engines
    • a workshop, where gamified approach is used to improve your search engine literacy and searching skills.

Topics covered

    • information retrieval in context
      -information seeking, problem solving…
    • Information retrieval systems (i.e. search engines)
      -queries, matching, ranking, evaluation, natural language processing, user interfaces…
    • Linked data and semantic web
      -social media

No prior knowledge about the topic is required. The workshop consists of online exercises using a standard web browser, thus your own laptop is preferred (no software will be installed).

Financial support for participation in the information retrieval workshop for participants whose masters’ or doctoral thesis deals with China (Funding from the Joel Toivola Foundation)
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 a maximum of ten masters’ students / PhD candidates who fulfill the following qualifications:
– attends the events both on the 18th and 19th of November
– whose masters’ or doctoral thesis deals with China
– is registered as a student or doctoral candidate in one of the Network’s member universities (Jyväskylä, Tampere or Turku)
– does not live in the Jyväskylä region

The deadline for travel grant applications is October 31. The grant decisions will be made latest by November 5.

You can register for the event, and apply for the grant by using the Asian Studies Days registration form.