Monthly Archives: November 2015

Calligraphy Classes in the New Year

Our well established calligraphy classes run by Chi Zhang are open to both beginners and improvers.  Under the expert guidance of our calligraphy tutor many students have learnt the joy of discovering and practising this ancient art.

For next term, Winter 2016, we are running a 10 week course on Tuesday evenings 6pm-8pm with the first class starting on 19 January 2016.  Classes take place in the main teaching room of the Institute and all materials are provided.  Please note that this term there will be no class on Tues 2nd Feb 2016.  The final class will therefore take place on Tues 29 March 2016.

To book a place on this rewarding course please complete and return the registration form below along with your cheque payment for £150 (£120) made out to the University of Edinburgh. Cash payment can be made at the Institute office.


Meantime, enjoy this video showing Chi Zhang at work and see some work made by his students.

Language Classes 2016 – now open for booking

We offer a diverse programme of evening classes for adults to enjoy learning Chinese. Terms run from Sept-Dec; Jan-Mar; Apr-Jun with a condensed programme of classes offered over the summer.

An absolute beginner can join us at the start of each term. Any student who has some previous experience in learning the language is welcome to drop in for an initial assessment to help determine which class would best suit.

Classes run for two hours on the same evening for a ten week term. After three terms most students are ready to move to the next level. No assessment is carried out but students are encouraged to test their developing skills by sitting the globally run HSK test.

Excellence in teaching is paramount. Most of our teachers are seconded from Fudan University which regularly send us experienced senior teachers and a number of Masters candidates in Teaching Chinese to Speakers of Other Languages. You can see the profiles of our current and previous teachers by clicking here.

LANGUAGE CLASSES January-March 2016

Course bookings for the winter term will open in December 2015. To get more information, register your interest in advance, or request an assessment meeting if you have some previous learning, please email:

CLass level Code Day(s) Dates-all 2016 Time Full Price / Student
Chinese 1.1  CH040-217 Monday 18 Jan-21 Mar 6.00-8.00pm £130/£86
 CH040-220 Tuesday 19 Jan-22 Mar 6.00-8.00pm £130/£86
CH040-219 Wednesday 20 Jan-23 Mar 6.00-8.00pm £130/£86
 CH040-218 Thursday 21 Jan-24 Mar 6.00-8.00pm £130/£86
Chinese 1.2  CH044-217 Monday 18 Jan-21 Mar 6.00-8.00pm £130/£86
 CH044-218 Wednesday 20 Jan-23 Mar 6.00-8.00pm £130/£86
Chinese 1.3 CH046-208 Thursday 21 Jan-24 Mar 6.00-8.00pm £130/£86
Chinese 2.1  CH041-207 Wednesday 20 Jan-23 Mar 6.00-8.00pm £130/£86
Chinese 2.2  CH037-206 Monday 18 Jan-21 Mar 6.00-8.00pm £130/£86
Chinese 2.3 CH011-205 Monday 18 Jan-21 Mar 6.00-8.00pm £130/£86
Chinese 3.1  CH045-205 Tuesday 19 Jan-22 Mar 6.00-8.00pm £130/£86
Chinese 3.2  CH036-206 Thursday 21 Jan-24 Mar 6.00-8.00pm £130/£86
Chinese 3.3  CH012-204 Thursday 21 Jan-24 Mar 6.00-8.00pm £130/£86
Chinese 4.1  CH038-205 Tuesday 19 Jan-22 Mar 6.00-8.00pm £130/£86
Chinese 4.2  CH013-205
Thursday 21 Jan-24 Mar 6.00-8.00pm £130/£86
Chinese 4.3 CH008-203 Tuesday 19 Jan-22 Mar 6.00-8.00pm £130/£86
Chinese 5.1  CH009-203 Wednesday 20 Jan-23 Mar 6.00-8.00pm £130/£86
Chinese 6.1  CH015-202 Wednesday 20 Jan-23 Mar 6.00-8.00pm £130/£86
Chinese 6.2  CH019-201
Monday 18 Jan-21 Mar 6.00-8.00pm £130/£86
Chinese Advanced  CH002-203 Monday 18 Jan-21 Mar 6.00-8.00pm £130/£86

Listen again or catch up
2015 lecture podcasts

Here on this page you will find a number of podcasts and videos of previous events run by our Institute. 

Lord Green: October 2015
China & Europe

Steven Green,  former chair of HSBC has a career spanning almost five decades. In this talk he compares and contrasts Europe and China from Confucius to Aristotle to the present day. For more information on this speaker and the talk please click here.

Shen Dingli October 2015
China’s Peaceful Rise: Challenges & Opportunities

Deputy Dean of  the Institute of International Studies at Fudan University and former advisor to Kofi Annan, Shen Dingli research and publications focus mainly on China-US security relations.For more information on this speaker and the talk please click here.

WAGnet Conference: September 2015
Memory, Gender & Change in China

A day long symposium on the above with contributions from a range of speakers on a variety of topics.  For more information on this event and the topics covered please click here.



Dr ANdreas Guder, March 2015
Chinese as a Foreign Language in Germany

Dr Andreas Guder is based in Freie Universitat, Berlin where he is head of Chinese Language Study and Chairman of the Association of Chinese Teachers in German Speaking Countries. For more information on this speaker and his talk please click here.

David Shambaugh: March 2015
China at the Crossroads? Major Reform Challenges

David Shambaugh is Professor of Political Science & International Affairs and founding Director of the China Policy Program in the Elliott School of International Affairs at George Washington University. For more information on this speaker and his talk please click here.

Wang Ban:June 2015
Where Have All the villages Gone?

Wang Ban is the William Haas Professor in Chinese Studies and a board member of the Confucius Institute at Stanford University. His research focuses on Chinese and comparative literature, and additionally  he has written on English and French literatures, psychoanalysis, international politics, and cinema. For more information on this speaker and his talk please click here.

Zhang Longxi: April 2015
Reconceptualising China in our Time

A leading scholar in East-West cross-cultural studies Zhang Longxi holds an MA from Peking University and a Ph.D. from Harvard. He is currently Chair Professor of Comparative Literature and Translation at City University Hong Kong. For more information on this speaker and his talk please click here.

Lin Zhaohua: August 2013
Shakespeare in China

Following the staging of The Tragedy of Coriolanus at the Edinburgh International Festival by China`s best known director of modern drama, LIN Zhaohua, our Institute hosted an afternoon conversation session with him in partnership with the British Council and EIF in which he discussed this production and Chinese modern theatre.

Jim O Neill, June 2012
China and Its Place in the World

As chairman of Goldman Sachs Asset Management (GSAM) Jim was involved in helping guide all aspects of GSAM’s businesses around the world. One of the world’s most famous economists with over ten years experience at Goldman Sachs, Jim O Neill has a global reputation as a famous economist. Creator of the acronym BRICs, he has published extensively on the emergence of the BRIC economies -Brazil, Russia, India and China This video extract was recorded in June 2012 on the topic of ‘China and Its Place in the World’.

For more information on this speaker and his talk please click here.

Stephen Perry: May 2012
Everyone should understand China

Stephen Perry has been involved with China since his earliest days as his father was the leader of the Icebreaker group to China in 1953 which restarted UK-China trade relations just one year after starting up the business in which Stephen is today Managing Director, London Export Corporation.  He is also Chairman of the 48 Group Club. For more information on this speaker and his talk please click here.

Adam Dupre: April 2012
China/Scotland: the global context

Adam was the founder of China Company Research Services and the opening speaker in the Institute’s Business Lecture Series – China, Scotland and the World. An ex officio Vice President of the 48 Group Club he initiated earlier visits to Scotland by the Chinese Ambassador and the Chinese Minister of Education. For more information on this speaker and his talk please click here.

One Belt, One Road: Briefing Session, Report, & Webinar

On Wed 9 December in Glasgow, China Britain Business Council will run a briefing event focusing on opportunities for businesses related to the One Belt One Road initiative, launched by Chinese President Xi Jinping in 2013.

The programme will present the key findings of a report into this initiative to improve and create new trade routes, links and business opportunities with China, which will pass through over 60 countries along the way, through Asia, Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

Jeff Astle, CBBC’s Executive Director, and Nathan Blunt from the FCO, will lead the session along with panellists from companies which are actively involved. Initial opportunities exist in infrastructure development, financial and professional services, advanced manufacturing and transport, agriculture, energy and resources, logistics, construction and master planning, as well as regionally in ports, tourism and environmental industries.

If you are unable to attend the event but would like to either download the report or take part in a webinair session you can do so by clicking here.


Calligraphy Competition-Scottish Heat Tues 1st Dec 2015 6pm

The Confucius Institute for Scotland is pleased to be hosting the Scotland heat of a global Chinese Calligraphy Contest being organised by Sinolingua. Taking place at the in the Institute at Abden House on Tuesday 1st December from 6pm, the competition is open to all non-native speakers of Chinese.

Artist practising calligraphyMany students enjoy learning Chinese characters. Some students take this enjoyment further by studying Chinese calligraphy while others start with an aesthetic enjoyment of the form. Whichever is the case for you, join us to take part in the heat. All participants will receive a beautiful calligraphy gift set and Chinese refreshments will be on offer during the evening. If successful you can progress to the next stage and might even be the winner of a return flight to China!

The theme of the competition is Chinese Calligraphy-an art of global appeal‘.

Programme for Tues 1st December

Confucius Institute for Scotland calligraphy teacher Chi Zhang will give a short lecture and demonstration before contestants take up their brushes. Contestants can choose which script to use and there is no limit on the content, number of words, signature etc. All materials will be provided.

All contestants attending on 1st Dec will receive a beautiful calligraphy gift set and Chinese refreshments will be available on the evening.

Competition Process

Representatives of SinoLingua (sponsors of the global competition) will take photos of each completed work while a video describing the creation of the work will also be made. Completed work will be uploaded to the Mass Selection website. There, following on from the judging, selected artwork will progress to the second round and hopefully to the Finals with the chance to win the top prize of a round-trip flight to China.

To arrange to take part or if you have any questions please email Chi Zhang.

This competition is organised by SinoLingua.  For more info please visit the competition website

Memory Gender & Change in China – WAGNet Podcasts

A day long symposium ‘Memory Gender and Change in China’ organised by WAGNet (Women and Gender in Chinese Studies Network) with the support of the Confucius Institute for Scotland took place on 11 September. Podcasts of the three panel sessions which addressed themes as shown below, are now available. Scroll down to access.

    • New wave feminism
    • LGBT communities
    • Campaigns against violence against women
    • Dating and violence
    • Reproductive cultures
    • Technologies of intimacy
    • Politics of photographic representation of the female body
    • Socialist masculinities
    • Men’s role in family planning and contraception
    • Transnational feminist organizing

woman as manWAGNET CONFERENCE: Panel 1
Tradition and Change

Moderator: Prof Fiona Moore
Dr. Alison Hardie, University of Leeds
Dr. Wu Shengqing, Hong Kong University of Science & Technology
Dr. Xuelei Huang, University of Edinburgh
Dr. Francesca Bray, University of Edinburgh.

women-hold-up-half-the-skyWAGnet conference Panel 2:
Socialist heritage and contemporary resonances

Moderator: Prof. Francesca Bray, University of Edinburgh
Dr. Wang Xiangxian, Sociology, Tianjin Normal University
Prof. Fiona Moore, Royal Holloway, University of London
Dr. Wang Xiying, Beijing Normal University;
Dr. Derek Hird, University of Westminster.

anti domestic violenceWAgnet conference Panel 3:
From global to local: reflections 20 years after the UN Fourth World Conference on Women

Moderator: Dr. Xuelei Huang, University of Edinburgh
Feng Yuan, Media Monitor Network for Women and Shantou University
Dr. Robin Runge, George Washington University Law School
Dr. Wei Wei, East China Normal University
Dr. Sophia Woodman, University of Edinburgh (Local Organiser)

For more information on WAGNet please visit their website here.

China-A Science & Technology Superpower? 25 Nov 3.30pm

Join us when Prof Erik Baark from Hong Kong University of Science & Technology poses the question China – A Science & Technology Superpower?

With the rapid growth of Chinese investments in science and technology, and the expansion of outputs in terms of scientific articles, patents, and technological capabilities, some observers have predicted that China is on its way to becoming a technological superpower. This prediction is naturally based on the rapid developments in the input of R&D investment and output of scientific publications and patents that have taken place in China during the recent decades. But what does the concept of a scientific and technological superpower imply? In this talk, Erick Baark will discuss several interpretations of the concept of superpower and provide a preliminary assessment of key trends that have been seen as the promise of China’s emerging status. In his conclusion,he proposes that if, indeed, China is becoming an S&T superpower, one can hope that it will become a different type of superpower.

ErikBaarkErik Baark is Professor at the Division of Social Science and the Division of Environment at the Hong Kong University of Science & Technology. He completed a PhD at the University of Lund (1986) and a Dr.phil. at the University of Copenhagen (1998). His primary research interests are related to innovation systems and science and technology policy in China and other East Asian countries. His research on China includes analysis of information systems and IT development and high technology entrepreneurship during recent policy reforms. He has also published extensively on innovation in Hong Kong and the Pearl River Delta. He has published edited volumes and monographs, including Lightning Wires: Telegraphs and China’s Technological Modernization 1860-1890 (Greenwood Press, 1997). He has also published articles in leading international area studies journals such as The China Quarterly and innovation research journals such as Research Policy and the International Journal of Technology Management.

Lecture: China – A Science & Technology Superpower?
Speaker: Prof Erik Baark, Hong Kong University of Science & Technology

Date: Wednesday 25th November
Time: 3.30-5.00
Venue: Room LT2, University of Edinburgh Business School, 29 Buccleuch Place

For further information contact:

Jointly organized by the Institute for the Study of Science, Technology and Innovation and The Confucius Institute for Scotland in the University of Edinburgh.

Farmland for Farmers
24 Nov 15 6.30pm

We are delighted to welcome Dong Zhenghua, formerly Distinguished Professor of Humanities at Peking University and now Professor of Chu Hai College for Higher Education, Hong Kong as the sixth speaker in our Distinguished Lecture Series 2015. His talk is entitled Farmland for Farmers: Problems of Large-scale Enclosure of Farmland in China.


One key question in today’s China is how to protect the farmers’ farmland? Under China’s ‘collective farmland ownership’ system, ultimate ownership of land is difficult to determine. With a growing economy, demand for land also grows.

Local government and real estate companies, can all too easily requisition land in the name of public demand with minimal compensation to the farmers. Conversely there is an increasing need for more agricultural activity.

At present there is a danger of large-scale enclosure of farmland becoming an acute issue and land related disputes being exacerbated. Is the solution to confer peasant families with perpetual rights under the Constitution? What would the impact of such a policy be and is there a way ahead which will treat individuals fairly and address the conflicting demands?


DongZhenghua 1

 Dong Zhenghua, former Director of the Centre for Modernization Studies (1999-2014) and Distinguished Professor of Humanities (2012-14) at Peking University, is currently a Professor  at Chu Hai College for Higher Education, Hong Kong.

His publications on agrarian problems include

  • Farmers onto Modernity (2014);
  • Nanjie Village: a Market Oriented Collective (Equity, Exclusion and Liberalization: a debate among historians-Papers of the 1996 SEPHIS workshop, Zanzibar);
  • Reserve the Land for Family Farming: On the Use of Farmland and the Future of the Peasantry in China (Global Capitalism and the Future of Agrarian Society, 2012);
  • Does China Need to Develop Agrarian Capitalism? (Chinese Studies in History, vol. 47, no.2, Winter 2013-14. M.E. Sharpe, Inc.)

Event Details

This talk will take place in the lower ground level lecture theatre LG.11 of the David Hume Tower, University of Edinburgh,EH8 9JY from 6.30pm.  A drinks reception will follow.  All welcome


Rising China and Global Impact
13 Nov 3.15pm

Professor Tony Chan, President of Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Asia’s No 1 University for three years in a row, will give a guest lecture on the topic of Rising China and Global Impact.

Globalisation, which calls for responses from many different sectors and stakeholders around the world, brings opportunities along with challenges. As such, rising China in the global arena is playing an increasingly important role in addressing the global imperative and shaping international agenda.  In the global marketplace, no champion can excel on its own.

How does one make sense of this ‘new’ internationalisation?  How does a university find its place in the midst of global cross currents? In the globalised context, which is always in flux, how do we go beyond traditional confines to soar as global players with global impact?


TonyChanHKUSTProfessor Tony F Chan assumed the presidency of HKUST in Sept 2009.  Prior to this appointment he was Assistant Director of the the Mathematical and Physical Sciences Directorate at the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF), which is the largest directorate at NSF.

Professor Chan’s scientific background is in Mathematics, Computer Science and Engineering. He received his BS and MS degrees in Engineering from the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) and his PhD in Computer Science from Stanford University. He pursued postdoctoral research at Caltech as Research Fellow, and taught Computer Science at Yale University before joining the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA) as Professor of Mathematics in 1986. He was appointed Chair of the Department of Mathematics in 1997 and served as Dean of Physical Sciences from 2001 to 2006. He also holds honorary joint appointments with the University’s BioEngineering Department and the Computer Science Department.

Event Details

Friday 13 November 2015
Lecture Theatre 2, Appleton Tower, 11 Crichton St, Edinburgh, EH8 9LE

For more information on HKUST please click here.