China / Education

New think tank set to project Chinese thought around globe

By Wang Hongyi in Shanghai (China Daily) Updated: 2015-11-27 07:52

Fudan University in Shanghai recently launched The China Institute to promote the rise of Chinese thought and discourse around the globe.

The institute was jointly formed by the university's China Development Model Research Center and the Center for New Political Economy. Its goal is to analyze the factors behind the rise of China, and carry out theoretical and policy studies on China's development path.

"The institute will be a place that constantly produces original Chinese thoughts, Chinese theories and Chinese discourse. It will become a leading new type of think tank with considerable influence in the world," said Zhang Weiwei, director of institute.

In an interview with The New York Times earlier this year, Zhang Weiwei said discourse is very important for a large country like China which is undergoing rapid change and must establish its own power of speech as a way to overcome the ideological prejudices and misunderstandings of Western critics.

"China's rise has global implications and provokes questions and suspicions," Zhang told the Times. "To my mind, the country should face these squarely and explain itself clearly and confidently to its own people and to the outside world."

In Zhang's view, the establishment of the institute means Chinese academic circles will no longer be a "microphone" for Western academics.

China should be more proactive as it rises, and should prepare to answer every question raised by the rest of the world, said Robert Lawrence Kuhn, author of The Man Who Changed China: The Life and Legacy of Jiang Zemin, the first biography of a living Chinese leader to be published in China.

The China Institute will organize high-level forums, workshops and various symposiums on issues concerning China's development model and discourse.

The institute has already made a preliminary agreement with the China Center at the University of Oxford in Britain to hold an international symposium annually on the Chinese development model. It also cooperated with the Institute of China Studies at the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences to establish the Shanghai China Dream Innovative Research Base.

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