Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Edinburgh University to set up the Scottish Confucius Institute

Ian Swanson, Scottish political editor at The Scotsman newspaper, reports:

A NEW institute is to be established at Edinburgh University to promote Chinese language, culture and business, it was announced today.

The decision to set up the Scottish Confucius Institute followed talks in Beijing between First Minister Jack McConnell and the Chinese Education Minister, Professor Zhou Ji.

Staff from one of China's top three universities will be seconded to staff the institute, which is expected to be up and running later this year.

Its first task will be to initiate language teaching, but it promises increased language teaching and the establishment of a programme of cultural activities next year.

The Ministry of Education in China intends to open around 100 Confucius Institutes across the globe by 2010. The network is intended to spearhead the teaching of Chinese language and culture worldwide and to strengthen economic and business ties.


Full article here

More on China can be found at The Scotsman's Trade with China archives.


jewellspring said...

So why should this interest us?

Kathryn Judson said...

Jewellspring, Why not? China has already become a world power worth watching. That it is setting up educational centers around the globe to increase economic ties and improve cultural understanding strikes me as noteworthy.

This is not to mention that I'm wondering why these centers are called Confucius centers. I had no idea that Confucious was held in such high regard by the modern Chinese. I'm wondering if this means anything about worldview, or is just capitalizing on a name likely to be recognized as Chinese by non-Chinese?