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Upon arriving in Beijing, Dr Funke tweeted ‘I am so excited to visit the University of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (UCASS) in Beijing together with other @UniofExeter colleagues to talk about my research & teaching! And what an amazing welcome: check out the billboard with our names & photographs on campus.’

Exeter academics visit Beijing for the 'UCASS - University of Exeter Academic Week'

The ‘UCASS – University of Exeter Academic Week’ celebrated the partnership between the two universities and provided valuable opportunities for collaboration around research and teaching.

UCASS is one of the youngest and fastest developing institutions in China. Founded in 2017, UCASS is rapidly developing a reputation as an outstanding organisation for research and education in the Humanities and Social Sciences. Exeter and UCASS are currently working together on a number of initiatives. A new study abroad agreement will allow UCASS students to study at Exeter in future years, whilst Exeter will also welcome a group of UCASS staff as visiting scholars later in 2018.

In order to help launch this partnership, UCASS have hosted the ‘UCASS – University of Exeter Academic Week’ (19 - 22 June) with four Exeter academics travelling to UCASS for a series of research and education events. Dr Jana Funke (English), Dr Hao Gao (History), Prof Dario Castiglione (Politics), and Dr Annalisa Marini (Business School) presented lectures to UCASS students, met with UCASS faculty, and discussed their research. Topics included Dr Hao’s ‘New Perspectives on the Origins of the Opium War,’ Dr Funke’s ‘Modernist Literature, Women’s Writing and Virginia Woolf,’ and Prof Castiglione’s ‘EU after Brexit.’

The programme is part of UCASS’ drive to enable their students to hear from some of the best academics from all over the world, whilst simultaneously helping to build connections with key partner universities. In addition, the visit provided an opportunity for UCASS students to hear first-hand about opportunities to study abroad or apply for MA programmes at Exeter.

Dr Jo Gill, Associate Dean for International and Development in the College of Humanities, said of the visit. ‘I would like to thank UCASS for welcoming our staff to Beijing and for providing them with the opportunity to participate in this exciting week. We hope to be able to return the favour by offering UCASS scholars the opportunity to work at Exeter as Visiting Scholars and providing UCASS students a warm welcome to Exeter, should they choose to come here for study abroad or for postgraduate study.’ 

Date: 27 June 2018