SOAS University of London

New Funding announced for Taiwan Studies at SOAS

4 December 2016
New Funding announced for Taiwan Studies at SOAS    
2015-2018 MoU Signing
From left to right: Mr. Ouyang Yen-heng (Director Education Division, Ministry of Education, Taipei Representative Office in the UK), Mr. Cheng Hsiang-yun (Deputy Taiwan Representative to the UK), Mr. David Lin (Taiwan Representative to the UK), Baroness Valerie Amos (Director, SOAS), Dr. Dafydd Fell (Director, SOAS Centre of Taiwan Studies), Dr. Chang Bi-yu (Deputy Director, SOAS Centre of Taiwan Studies), Ms. Chen Ya-hui (Director, Taipei Representative Office in the UK). Photo credit: Mr. Glenn Ratcliffe
     On November 29 SOAS, University of London signed two major agreements with Taiwan to promote the School’s Taiwan Studies programme between 2015 and 2018.The agreements, involve Taiwan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of Education, and include funding for the SOAS Taiwan studies programme’s research, academic event, publication and teaching projects. The signing ceremony was held at the Taipei Representative Office at Victoria. The agreements were signed by the Taiwan Representative to the United Kingdom David Y.L. Lin and SOAS Director Baroness Valerie Amos.
     At the ceremony David Lin praised the SOAS Centre of Taiwan Studies for its achievements since its establishment in 1999, describing it as the leader in European Taiwan Studies. He thanked SOAS for its efforts in promoting Taiwan Studies, especially noting the contribution of the programme’s founder Professor Robert Ash and the current director Dafydd Fell (羅達菲). He also praised the school’s Taiwan Studies teaching courses and MA Taiwan Studies degree, its publications on Taiwan’s politics, economics and culture, as well as its extensive academic events programme.
     SOAS Director Baroness Valerie Amos thanked Taiwan for its long-term support for our Taiwan Studies programme, noting how this has enabled SOAS to be the world’s leading centre for Taiwan Studies. She pointed out that we have the widest range of Taiwan courses and run more Taiwan Studies academic events than any university in Europe and North America.
     Speaking after the ceremony Dr Fell commented, ‘This is a historic moment in the development of the SOAS Taiwan Studies programme. It will allow us to continue to offer our full range of Taiwan courses, annual conferences, special lecture series, film screening and popular summer school. I was a first year PhD when the programme first started out in 1999. I have been delighted to see the way the programme has expanded its scope over the last 17 years to become the world’s leading centre of Taiwan studies. I would like to express my appreciation to the support we have received from colleagues at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of Education in London.’
MoU Signing Group Photo
Mr. David Lin and Baroness Amos with SOAS Postgraduate class Taiwan’s Politics and Cross-Strait Relations. Photo credit: Ms. Jewel Lo

     Following the ceremony David Lin held a question and answer session with a group of SOAS Taiwan Politics class students. Questions raised covered both his time as foreign minister under the Ma Ying-jeou administration but also Taiwan’s current challenges in external relations under Tsai Ing-wen.