Sino-Nordic exchanges in the humanities

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Photo/lay-out: Anne Houe. 6th Sino-Nordic Women and Gender Studies Conference

This week, 140 researchers from all over the world gathered in Oslo to discuss aging and generations in times of change for China and the Nordic countries. Among them, 40 attendees came from Chinese research institutions, including Fudan University and East China Normal University in Shanghai.

This is the sixth time the Sino-Nordic Women and Gender Studies Conference, organized by the Sino-Nordic Gender Studies Network, has been held. The conference was hosted by The Centre for Gender Research at the University of Oslo Svein Stølen, the newly elected rector (president) of the University of Oslo, stated in his opening speech that the university is eager to strengthen its collaboration with Chinese academia and research institutions. The university is sending its own delegation to China in the spring of next year.

General Secretary of the Fudan Development Institute at Fudan University in Shanghai, Chen Yinzhang, was optimistic about the future academic exchanges between China and Norway, stating that China has a lot to learn from the Nordic countries in the fields of gender studies and gender equality.

Despite the strained relationship between China and Norway leading up to last year’s normalization, academic exchanges and research collaborations have stayed stable.

Moreover, as guest lecturer Harriet Bjerrum-Nielsen points out: the domestic success of the Norwegian TV-series Skam and its surprising popularity among young people in China shows that although differences might remain large, there are now growing common cultural references between the two countries.