DIGITAL LECTURE SERIES: Current Affairs in China

The Centre would like to inform its readers of four Digital Lectures on Current Affairs in China, hosted by international scholars on different pressing issues and development of the Chinese society. These lectures are organized as part of the Chinese Study Program at UiB (Department of Foreign Languages).

China’s rise as a powerful economic and political power has made it both a strategic partner and a systemic rival to Europe particularly because while some praise China’s efficiency in implementing political priorities, others criticize its authoritarian political system that aggressively suppresses any kind of dissent.

These lectures will explore the contradicting characters of Chinese politics, economy and society and other relevant issues of our time. For effective cooperation, now and future, it is essential that we understand the country and learn how to communicate with its people. This includes topics that vary from climate change to digital economy and many more. The lectures are open to students, staff, and the broader public as well; to learn about Chinese society and to engage in discussions.

17th March  (12–13.30): BUILDING STATE CAPACITY

Christian Göbel (Chair of China Studies at the University of Vienna) speaks on how repression has increased under Xi Jinping, but more importantly so has online participation. It is vital to understand how the regime uses public participation to monitor local officials, while at the same time cracking down on activities that had been tolerated previously.

This lecture is funded by the European Research Council.


Constantin Holzer (a postdoc at the Department of Asian Studies at Cork University College) will speak on the paradigmatic and regulatory shift from ‘Corporate Social Responsibility’ to ‘Corporate Social Credit System’ and its wider consequences on state-business relationships and entrepreneurs in China. The rise of the digital economy, the current leadership and the regulation of behavior, a threat to companies’ autonomy or new opportunities and legal security.


Professor Yang Laike (Dean of the Department of International Economics at East China Normal University) expands on the Covid-19 pandemic’s effects on China’s foreign trade and national economic development and its potential progress in 2021 and 2022. The pandemic has, amongst other things, disrupted the global supply chains and dragged the global economy and the repercussions were and will be felt in all economic and societal sectors.

21ST April  (12–13.30): CLAIMING LABOUR RIGHTS

Daniel Fuchs (a postdoc at the Department of Asian and African Studies at Humboldt University) based on his long-term fieldwork in China, provides insights into migrant labour unrest’s current characteristic that can be felt in the country currently as well as situates them within the history of worker protests in reform China.

If you have questions regarding the lectures, please contact Julia Marinaccio:

This blog post was written by one of the Center’s interns, Sukhman Gill. Sukhman is from Finland but did her LL.B in England. She is currently doing a Master’s in International Business Law at the University of Helsinki and a M.Sc. in Economics and Business Administration at Hanken School of Economics. She is particularly interested in Comparative Law, Cross-Border Transactions and Intellectual Property Law.