It is well understood that India needs to greatly strengthen its knowledge and understanding of China, particularly in the context of today’s world, through systematic encouragement of China studies in India. However, various assessments conducted of the state of China studies in India agree that we are still greatly lagging behind in this respect. This is in spite of the fact that different stakeholders have undertaken initiatives, particularly in the last 10 to 15 years, to promote or support China studies in India in a variety of ways.
The Institute of Chinese Studies is engaged in conducting a detailed examination of these recent initiatives. In this connection, it has been in contact with a number of the stakeholders, including government agencies, public and private universities, think tanks, concerned foundations and trusts, as well as institutions abroad. The idea is to come up with an assessment of the problems and shortcomings of China studies in India, and recommendations based on this, that do not merely repeat earlier critiques or confine themselves to generalizations, but that can provide an up-to-date picture of the situation based on the experience of the last few years.
As an integral part of this exercise, the ICS is organizing a one-day workshop in New Delhi on 23 January, 2020. The objective is to enable individuals and representatives of institutions who have been engaged in trying to promote Chinese studies in India to share their experience and their views on what has been achieved so far, what are the challenges that they are facing, and what remains to be done. A direct and frank discussion among the different stakeholders will be of great importance in coming up with a comprehensive and objective assessment of the state of China studies in India at this juncture and recommendations on how to take it forward.
To facilitate maximum discussion, the plan is to have theme-based sessions, in which 4-5 panelists with a moderator will be asked to present their views and in which adequate time will be reserved for interventions from other participants in the workshop. The themes have been chosen based on the inputs received so far from our respondents, and reflect issues of common concern.
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