Category Archives: Conference

Cultural heritage in China: contested understandings, images and practices

The conference is open to scholars who study the multifaceted and complex understandings and uses of cultural heritage and its everyday manifestations in contemporary China.

Conference at Lund University 17-18 June, 2015

In an increasingly diverse Chinese society there is today a multitude of actors that celebrate diverse identities, representations of the past and heritage sites. These actors include local governments, cultural heritage bureaus, tourism companies, the media, scholars, and different civil society groups and local communities. The official cultural heritage discourse is today contested through alternative understandings, although the different actors have different cultural, political and economic capital to make their voices heard and shape heritage policy, management and use. Local communities for example often celebrate local cultural and religious identities and traditions at heritage sites, or at sites not always recognized as such by the state. Negotiations and conflicts over the meaning and management of heritage sites and place-making occur in the interface of an authoritarian state, market forces, and globalization, where the Internet, social media, and film, play important roles in shaping and mediating the debates, images and celebrations.

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Jacqueline Nivard

Jacqueline Nivard, Centre d'études sur la Chine moderne et contemporaine

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Food, feeding and eating in and out of Asia

 7th Annual International ADI Conference


Asian Dynamics Initiative, University of Copenhagen


24-26 June 2015  

Call for Papers

Food, feeding and eating activities are as old as life itself, but recently there has been a heightened interest in such issues within policy-making, international relations, and academic scholarship ranging from the bio-medical, philosophical, historical, and political to the social, cultural, economic, and religious. Food is both global and local: while foods, cuisines, recipes, people, and culinary cosmopolitanisms have been in global circuits of flows and circulations through various periods of history, the smells, sights, sounds, textures, and tastes of local foodscapes may evoke memories of ‘home’ and imaginations of travel alike. Moreover, with increasing numbers of people concentrated in large cities and urban agglomerations, the challenges of feeding people are becoming ever more complex. Against the backdrop of globalisation of Asia and Asian foods, this conference focuses on the wide-ranging aspects of production, consumption, distribution, disposal, and circulation of foods in and out of Asia. Read moreWe invite abstract proposals for paper presentations addressing the conference theme, but especially welcome perspectives relating to one or more of the panels listed below.


Jacqueline Nivard

Jacqueline Nivard, Centre d'études sur la Chine moderne et contemporaine

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UrbaChina final conference: presentations now online

UrbaChina final conferencePresentations held at UrbaChina final conference are now available online.









Sebastien Goulard

Ph.D. in political science (EHESS, Paris); M.A. in social sciences (EHESS, Paris); M.A. in international relations (IRIS, Paris), B.A. (Hons) in international political studies (ESE - Nottingham Trent University)

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UrbaChina final conference, Paris: research findings

The UrbaChina final conference was held in Paris on January 15-16, at the Palais de Chaillot.

During this event, UrbaChina consortium members presented their findings and final recommendations on the research project. This was the occasion for holding productive discussions among participants on topics related to sustainable urbanisation in China, such as the rural-urban integration, the hukou system, the definition (or lack of definition) of the concept of ecocity, the consequences of the tax sharing system on local development, etc.

Several presentations were dedicated to case studies on the four cities examined by the UrbaChina consortium (Shanghai, Chongqing, Kunming and Huangshan).

All the ppt presentations will be accessible soon.


Members of the stakeholder committee: Dwight Perkins, Françoise Ged (Cité de l’Architecture), Meng Jianjun (Tsinghua University), Michel Prouzet (Barreau de Paris), Yuan Zhigang (Fudan University), Bernard Yvetot (Orange) made some constructive remarks and emphasized the importance of the multidisciplinary approach to the studies of urbanization in China.

We’d like to thank Françoise Ged for having opened the doors of this institution to our guests. ((La Cite du Patrimoine et de l’Architecture, is opened to the public, and we strongly encourage you to visit this place when in Paris).

We’d like also to thank the staff of the CECMC (The research center on modern and contemporary China ) for the smooth running of this event.

Sebastien Goulard

Ph.D. in political science (EHESS, Paris); M.A. in social sciences (EHESS, Paris); M.A. in international relations (IRIS, Paris), B.A. (Hons) in international political studies (ESE - Nottingham Trent University)

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UrbaChina final conference, Paris, January 15-16

Trocadero We are glad to announce that the UrbaChina final conference will be held in Paris, January 15-16.

During this event which will gather every UrbaChina parter, the research programme’s results and achievements will be made public.

We invite every person interested in the issues of sustainability and China’s urbanisation to attend this meeting. However due to  room capacity, we would appreciate you first register by sending a message to

This event will be co-host by the “Cité de l’Architecture” and will be held at the prestigious “Palais de Chaillot”.

The conference programme is available here.

Partners of this event include:

European Union





Cite architecture






Sebastien Goulard

Ph.D. in political science (EHESS, Paris); M.A. in social sciences (EHESS, Paris); M.A. in international relations (IRIS, Paris), B.A. (Hons) in international political studies (ESE - Nottingham Trent University)

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“Urban communities and social sustainability”

On Decemberf 19, a UrbaChina workshop was held in Paris. Dring this event, Prof. Feuchtwang pressented us hios team’s finding on the subject of “urban communities and social sustainability”.

His ppt presentation is available here:

wp5 decembre 19.


Sebastien Goulard

Ph.D. in political science (EHESS, Paris); M.A. in social sciences (EHESS, Paris); M.A. in international relations (IRIS, Paris), B.A. (Hons) in international political studies (ESE - Nottingham Trent University)

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CHESS Young Scholars Conference 2015 – Responding to China’s Environmental Crisis: Interdisciplinary Approaches


Vienna, Austria


27 – 28th Feb 2015


30th Nov 2014

Organized by CHESS (China and the Environment in the Social Sciences) Hosted by the Department of East Asian Studies, University of Vienna, Austria Keynote speaker: Yu Xiaogang, Green Watershed

Submissions are welcomed for the inaugural CHESS Young Scholars Conference to be held at the Department of East Asian Studies, University of Vienna on 27-28 February 2015.


CHESS (China and the Environment in the Social Sciences) is an interdisciplinary research network for scholars from across the social sciences with research interests relating to environmental issues in China. Both the network and the conference provide a forum for graduate students and young scholars to discuss ideas, exchange information and to strengthen professional networks across the field.


China faces a multitude of environmental challenges, ranging from biophysical impacts of climate change, deforestation and water scarcity, to impacts on health and social stability resulting from pollution, land contamination and overexploitation of natural resources. Rapid industrialization and lax environmental oversight have exacerbated these problems exponentially, leaving the country in a position of acute environmental crisis and unsustainable development.


The CHESS Young Scholars Conference 2015 aims to investigate and formulate new theorizations of environmental dynamics in China through a critical analysis of actors, institutions and processes across and between spatial dimensions from the local to the international level, taking into account the political, economic and social contexts in which they operate. A key element of the conference is the broad interdisciplinary nature of its panels, drawing from across the social sciences in order to utilize a diverse array of theoretical and methodological approaches. To allow for a holistic perspective, contributions from political science, sociology, economics, anthropology, law and other disciplines addressing environmental issues in the PRC and/or Taiwan are highly encouraged.


Suggested topics include, but are not limited to:

  • China on the world stage: international environmental and climate change diplomacy
  • Environmental governance in rural and urban areas
  • Changing roles of state, market, and civil actors
  • The Chinese environmental movement: actors and trends
  • Greening China’s economy: tools, policies, and marketization strategies

Options for further collaboration and possible joint publications will be discussed during the conference.

More information


Jacqueline Nivard

Jacqueline Nivard, Centre d'études sur la Chine moderne et contemporaine

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”Understanding China’s urbanization from the perspective of the real estate industry “

aagAnnual meeting of the Association of American Geographers (AAG) 2015, Chicago, April 21-25
Call for papers : Special session ”Understanding China’s urbanization from the perspective of the real estate industry “, sponsored by the China specialty group

Organized by Natacha Aveline (CNRS/University Paris I-Panthéon Sorbonne) and Thierry Theurillat (University Neuchatel, Switzerland)
China’s real estate industry has become a major pillar of China’s economy. The past decade has seen a widespread increase of land and real estate values, followed by downward trends in some cities. This has raised discussions amongst scholars on the possibility that China was experiencing a property ‘bubble’ (see for example Zhou, 2005; Liu and Sun, 2009; Jianling, 2010; Wu et al., 2012).

However, this scholarship tends to favor a macro approach based on data analysis of property prices at city level, ignoring the complex mechanisms that are at work in the process of land development and building construction. Such mechanisms include: financial channels to the real estate industry; institutional and organizational arrangements underlying property development; differentiated access to primary resources for building construction (especially land and finance) according to the developer’s status. Starting from the assumption that these aspects play a significant role in the formation of property prices, this special session intends to shed light on the various processes of value creation in China’s cities, while contributing to the debate on the so-called ‘speculative bubble’ (or more precisely, ‘bubbles’. (Aveline-Dubach, 2014).

During the 2000s, China’s urbanization was clearly identified as an economic model based on land income for local government and related to the political and institutional changes since 1978 (Aglietta and Bai, 2013; Keith et al., 2014). With decentralized decision-making processes often based on interpersonal relations (Zhu, 2005 ; Li and Li, 2011), many scholars emphasized the role of the state and debated about the nature of the “emerging neoliberal urbanism” in China (He et Fu, 2005 et 2009 ; Cartier, 2011 ; Zhu, 2011). The ‘entrepreneurial’ approach of the local state and the formation of “local growth coalitions” (Zhu, 1999) with local developers, some of them being state-owned enterprises, have been identified as key features of local real estate dynamics in China (He et Wu, 2009; Wu, 2010; Cartier, 2011 ; Zhu, 2011). However, the institutional and cultural specificities of the demand for property have seldom been addressed (Hu, 2013) as scholars have focused on public finance (Gaulard, 2013; Wong, 2013).

In order to have a more integrated and transversal approach of the mechanisms involved in China’s urban production, this special session would welcome papers dealing with the following topics: real estate and urban production (e.g. role and business models of development and construction groups in China; evolution of national and local regulatory frameworks regarding land development and building construction), urban financing both on domestic and international levels (e.g. banking finance, trust financing, foreign direct investment, financial markets and stock exchange) and the role of the households for the urban property/ownership (residential and non-residential property).

Abstracts of 250 words (maximum) should be submitted to Natacha Aveline-Dubach ( and Thierry Theurillat ( by October 30. Please remember to include your name, institutional affiliation and contact details on your submission.

Sebastien Goulard

Ph.D. in political science (EHESS, Paris); M.A. in social sciences (EHESS, Paris); M.A. in international relations (IRIS, Paris), B.A. (Hons) in international political studies (ESE - Nottingham Trent University)

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Urban Futures-Squaring Circles: Europe, China and the World in 2050

urban futureThe  “Urban Futures-Squaring Circles: Europe, China and the World in 2050” conference will take place on 10 and 11 October 2014 and will be hosted by he ICS and ISIS, two members of the UrbaChina Consortium at the “University of Lisbon. It will explore advances in long-term thinking for sustainability, futures studies and strategic planning.

For more information, please go to the conference’s website.

Sebastien Goulard

Ph.D. in political science (EHESS, Paris); M.A. in social sciences (EHESS, Paris); M.A. in international relations (IRIS, Paris), B.A. (Hons) in international political studies (ESE - Nottingham Trent University)

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New Pathways to Urbanisation

UN-conferenceThe United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs and the China Energy Fund Committee organised a high-level panel and luncheon on sustainable urbanisation in China on 8 July 2014. Members participated in a lively discussion about China’s new urbanisation.

China is experiencing an unprecedented pace of urbanisation. The implementation of new urbanisation policies will greatly increase market size and create economic growth, such as trade and investment for the entire world. In this process, China can contribute to global environmental protection and climate change. China’s experience can also enrich the global collective experience of urbanisation. Content of the panel discussion and the radio reports can be found at the following links:


Chi-Han Ai

Ph.D. candidate of EHESS ( École des hautes études en sciences sociales, Paris) focusing on regional economic development in China and Taiwan.

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Media coverage of UrbaChina’s 4th International Conference

CTV News reported on the development of the conference interviewing, among others, UrbaChina’s coordinator François Gipouloux, and LSE professor Athar Hussain.

Captura de pantalla 2014-06-11 a las 11.51.23

Please click on the following link to watch the report:









Miguel Elosua

Spanish qualified lawyer; PhD in Chinese Law. UrbaChina Research Officer. Has lived in China since 2006.

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Policy implementation through the lowest levels of the state

This presentation was given by Stephan Feuchtwang during the 4th international conference of UrbaChina held in Chongqing from May 28th to May 30th, 2014. It shows the results of the fieldwork completed this year in five neighbourhood committees (juweihui-居委会) in Chongqing.

Miguel Elosua

Spanish qualified lawyer; PhD in Chinese Law. UrbaChina Research Officer. Has lived in China since 2006.

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UrbaChina 4th International Conference in Chongqing



From May 28th to May 30th, the University of Chongqing hosted the 4th International Conference of UrbaChina in Chongqing.

Members of UrbaChina’s consortium gathered at the venue to present and discuss the results of their research. Members of Urbachina’s Scientific committee provided further advice and guidance on current and future research work. The University of Chongqing invited relevant speakers, and students and other interested participants joined the dialogue.

The University of Chongqing offered a calligraphy reading “the new silk road” (xin sichou zhi lu-新丝绸之路), suggesting a new route for research cooperation between Europe and China through Chongqing. Calligraphy is an elevated art form in China, which reflects the importance attached to the word in this country.

Miguel Elosua

Spanish qualified lawyer; PhD in Chinese Law. UrbaChina Research Officer. Has lived in China since 2006.

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Spatial inequality in Asia

Special Session at the 2015 AAG Annual Meeting: The Geography of Inequality in Asia

Inequality is a fundamental issue for human society, a core subject of academic inquiry, and a major concern of governments. There has been a long-lasting debate about the pattern, trajectory, and mechanisms of geographical inequality, as well as policies that address poverty and inequality. This debate has been dominated by convergence (e.g., neoclassical economics) and divergence (e.g., dependency, neo-Marxism) schools. Concerns for the negative effects of globalization and liberalization and the unequal benefits of the transition in socialist countries have generated renewed debates since the late 1980s, which are intellectually enriched by developments in the new economic geography, new growth theory, economic sociology, institutional/evolutionary economic geography, and GIS. Thanks largely to the intensification of globalization and the uneven consequences of the recent global financial crisis, inequality has once again become a hotly debated topic among top world leaders, including those of the United Nations, World Bank and United States.

The geography of inequality has also drawn renewed scholarly interest, but the existing knowledge is fragmented and partial. This session intends to attract scholars with varied backgrounds to examine the dimensions, complexity, and dynamics of the geography of inequality from multiple perspectives.

Potential topics include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Outcomes: income, social, health, education, digital, innovation, environmental inequalities, etc., and their interactive effects
  • Trajectory/Dynamics: Timing, effects of intergenerational inequality, levels of development
  • Scale: From global to local and everyday life, with an emphasis on the regional scale
  • Space/Place: Spatial association/agglomeration/clustering, core-periphery relations, uneven nature of inequality, space/place as agents etc.
  • Networks: Spatial relations, flows, interactions
  • Processes/Mechanisms: Globalization, liberalization, marketization, institutional change, decentralization, geography
  • Procedures/Policies: Role of institutions, policy effects and options, justice, planning
  • Methodology: ESDA, spatial regression, GWR, multilevel modeling, spatial Markov chain, spatial distribution dynamics, big data etc.


  • April 21-25, 2015


  • AAG Annual Meeting, Chicago, Ill.


  • Yehua Dennis Wei, Professor, Department of Geography and Institute of Public and International Affairs, University of Utah,
  • Sanjoy Chakravorty, Professor, Department of Geography and Urban Studies, Temple University,

Submission Procedure

  • Please submit your participation/registration fee and abstracts online through the AAG’s website ( We would appreciate it if you would send us your PIN and title at your earliest time, at least two weeks before the AAG official deadline, to give us time to finalize and register the sessions.

 More info at: 


Monique Abud

Centre d'études sur la Chine moderne et contemporaine, EHESS, Paris, France

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The Second Conference of Chinese Industrial Architectural Heritage, Chongqing

Bulletin n°55 (2012), The International Committee for the Conservation of the Industrial Heritage (TICCH)

Yiping Dong

Since the State Administration of Cultural Heritage (SACH) started to pay attention to Industrial Heritage officially in 2006, the academic dis- cussions have grown rapidly and reached some conclusions. The Industrial Architecture Heritage Academia Committee (IAHAC), which is the first organization about IH in China, was founded under the Architectural Society of China (ASC) in 2010’s first conference of Chinese Industrial Architectural Heritage in Beijing. During this first Conference, the IAHAC raised the “Beijing Proposal” about saving Chinese Industrial Heritage, under the Nizhny Tagil Charter in 2003 by TICCIH and Wuxi Proposal in 2006 by SACH, and planned to continue the conferences every year.

The Second Conference in November last year (2011) was held by two Universities, Tsinghua and Chongqing, with support by SACH and ICOMOS China.

There were five sessions: 1) IH with regional perspective; 2) IH Conservation and Urban Regeneration; 3) Case Study on local IH; 4) Space Pattern and Transformation of Industrial buildings; 5) Industrial landscape and Art. Along the meeting, there were two exhibitions, one of old industrial images in Chongqing, and another about conservation design throughout China. Twelve key speeches in the first day were mainly about the survey and conservation of urban industrial sites in Chongqing, Beijing, Tianjin and Shanghai, which are now facing the rapid urban development, then the session discussion for the second day with 28 papers, following a great excursion about Chongqing’s IH. There were almost 2000 delegates and 75 papers, which doubled the 2010 meeting.

The high density speeches and session discussions show some trends in China’s IH research. Firstly, the geographical region of research has been enlarged, from the highly industrialized eastern coastal area and traditional industrial region to the mid-western such as Sichuan, Yunnan, Henan, Gansu, etc. Secondly, the time frame is no longer focused on the Westernization Movement (ca. 1860-1900) or before 1949, more papers discussing the first Five-year Plan (1953-1957) period and more closer period, the industrial construction aided by Soviet Union. Thirdly, some thematic topics emerged such as railways, including the Yunnan- Vietnam Railway (1889) and Chinese Eastern Railway (1896). Value analysis of IH, survey and recording techniques, and combining Creative Industries with IH, etc. The last but not least is the focus about relation of Reuse and Conservation. Sme argue for Reuse as the final destination, and others insist that conservation is the most important issue, and reuse is just a method. This divergence resulted from the concept misunderstanding. Industrial Heritage is still a vague term in the Chinese context, and needs more clarification, while the selection of IH sites is quite a subjective process, lacking overall technological assessment.

As the organizer and participants and are mostly in architecture and urban planning, the discussion paid more attention to space issues and regeneration, while the historical perspective, especially technological history and social history of industry, are nearly absent from the dis- course. The contamination problem of former industrial area hasn’t got enough attention. The next step should be getting more fields involved.

Other good news about IH in China: The Third National Monument Survey by SACH (2007-2012) is closing, having identified thousands of industrial sites, buildings and machines. The former Capital Steel Plant areas in Beijing, the Chinese Eastern Railway, are selected as the top 100 new discoveries from this Survey.

Oriane Pillet

Intern at the CNRS, UrbaChina project. M.A. in urban local development (IEDES, Paris); M.A. in international development studies (Panthéon-Sorbonne, Paris - Utrecht University); B.A. in geography and law (Panthéon-Sorbonne, Paris).

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