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UIBE SIR Successfully Held the 2019 International Affairs Summer Conference “Evolving Identities and Interests in a Dynamic World”
2019-03-11

 

On July 14th, 2019, the School of International Relations (SIR) of the University of International Business and Economics (UIBE) hosted the 2019 UIBE Internatopnal Affairs Summer Conference, themed “Evolving Identities and Interests in a Dynamic World”. The conference was convened in the Run Run Shaw Research Building, UIBE,  from 8 am to 6 pm.

Professor Dai Changzheng, Dean of the School of International Relations (SIR), University of International Business and Economics (UIBE), delivered an opening speech. Prof. Dai briefly reviewed the development of the School of International Relations,  UIBE, stressing on the progresses achieved in the discipline construction process since the establishment of the School. Starting by 2019, SIR UIBE has obtained the right to award doctoral degrees in the first-level discipline of Political Science. The new achievement has been widely regarded as a token of recognition for the  progresses registered in the discipline construction of Political Science in our School and will open a new chapter for the study of Political Science and International Affairs in the history of UIBE. The 2019 Summer Conference on International Affairs has been dedicated to the theme of evolving identities and interests in world politics in the light of the growing importance of the above-mentioned concepts in both international competition and cooperation. The West has faced increasing social inequalities, which, along with a wave of populism, has led to a higher degree of uncertainty in world politics. In China, the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China with Comrade Xi Jinping as the leadership core, has put forward a series of far-sighted new ideas and initiatives, such as the “New Model of International Relations” and the “Community of Shared Future for Mankind”, and injected new and positive momentum into the development of world politics. Professor Dai Changzheng expressed his warm welcome to the participating professors and scholars from all over the world and conveyed his best wishes.

The conference has been divided into five panels. The first panel was themed “Theories on the Evolution of World Politics”. James DeShaw Rae, professor at California State University in Sacramento, analyzed the on-going paradigm shift at the level of  international relations theory. Based on survey data provided by the College of William and Mary's report on the field of International Relations (TRIPS), Prof. Rae showcased the perceptions of various international relations paradigms in North America, Europe, Latin America, the Middle East, Africa, and Asia, explored their dynamics and the reasons that underlie their differentiation. Li Yiyu, professor at Zhejiang Sci-tech University, analyzed the cultural exchanges between China and India in the context of the “Belt and Road Initiative”. She argued that China and India have broad prospects for cooperation in many aspects such as economic development and infrastructure construction. According to Prof. Li, the two countries need to further strengthen their substantive cooperation through comprehensive and multi-level people exchanges. Liu Feng, professor at Nankai University, analyzed the evolution of the world order in the context of China's rise. He showcased that, by combining the two realist theories of Balance of Power and Hegemony, new findings could be drawn on the evolution of the world order, in terms of security and economic development.

The second panel explored topics on "Global Governance in World Politics". Jan Vandenberghe, Policy Coordinator and Trade Negotiator of the European Commission's Directorate-General for Trade, analysed the trade-related issues of the China-EU-US triangle and the current challenges facing the global trading system. He argued that the China-EU-US trade relations are of great significance to global economic growth, innovation, employment and sustainable development. The global multilateral trading system needs innovative trade rules, especially trade dispute settlement mechanisms, conducive to more harmonious trade and investment relations. Xu Qinhua, professor at Renmin University of China, analysed the regional energy governance system in Eurasia. She argued that Eurasia has evolved into an energy security community, connecting the energy exporting countries of the former Soviet Union to energy-consuming countries such as China and India through energy transfer countries, and establishing multilateral organisations such as the Eurasian Economic Union or Shanghai Cooperation Organization. Sara Marchetta, member of the Executive Committee of the EU-China Chamber of Commerce, analysed the impact of the Environmental, Social and Governance principles (ESG) on investment activities. She believes that the United Nations’ ESG principles are not only politically significant, but also pose significant impact on the value of stakeholders, corporate performance and investment decisions.

The third panel analysed topics on "Convergence and Conflicts in World Politics." Counsellor of the European Union Delegation to China and IP Attaché of the European Union Intellectual Property Office, Prof. Gunther Marten, analysed the relationship between the major powers in terms of global governance. He presented several aspects pertaining to the traditional Chinese political culture and interpreted the historical evolution of the Sino-US relations based on the political interactions between Mao Zedong and Nixon. Associate Professor Wang Bo, Associate Dean of the School of International Relations, UIBE, analysed the G20 model in global governance. He showcased the significance of G20 as a platform for global governance and stressed over its prospects in facilitating global governance and establishing international institutional norms. Keith Gehring, assistant professor at the University of Denver in the United States, predicted the trend of big power relations in 2050. Based on indicators such as population, economic development, technological progress, and sustainable development capabilities, he created a forecast model to anticipate the relationship between China and the US in 2050.

The fourth section was themed "Multidisciplinary Studies on World Politics". Men Jing, professor at the College of Europe, analysed the evolution of the Sino-EU relations. Based on the analysis of the EU's China Policy Report, she pointed that EU's relations with China have undergone important changes, and the EU and China's identity and interests are constantly evolving. Kevin McConkey, professor at the University of New South Wales in Australia, analysed the development of identity from a psychological perspective. He showcased that the shaping of identity involves many factors such as psychology, society, culture and economy. Human beings have the general desire to reduce cognitive uncertainty and obtain a sense of social belonging. This principle is important for understanding the significance of individual identity, social solidarity and world politics. Aristides Kwizela Basebya, doctoral candidate at the Communication University of China, analysed the international media coverage of China's “Belt and Road Initiative”. Based on reports from major international media outlets during the 2018 China-Africa Cooperation Forum, he found that media in China, Africa and the West believe that the “Belt and Road Initiative” brings new opportunities for infrastructure construction and economic development, but African and Western media tend to be more reserved, occasionally pointing at issues such as debt trap.

The fifth panel addressed "Governance Models in World Politics." Claudio Puty, associate professor at the Federal University of Para, Brazil, analysed Latin American politics in the light of America’s 2017 National Security Strategy Report. He believes that, since 2017, the United States has been deeply involved in Latin American politics, particularly on anti-corruption issues. Given its strong influence on the judicial systems of Latin American countries, the US government has imposed sanctions on Latin American politicians who are unwilling to cooperate with the United States. Professor Sven Biscop, Director of the Egmont Royal Institute of International Relations, Belgium, analysed the EU strategy in the global arena. He argued that the EU can adopt a unique strategy in the competition of big powers by finding a middle way between dreamy idealism and unprincipled pragmatism, and thus play a key stabilizing role in world politics. Zhao Jing, senior research fellow at the International Cooperation Centre of the National Development and Reform Commission, analysed the trade flows between China and ASEAN. She pointed that the current trade situation between China and ASEAN is generally good, and the future potential is huge. On the other hand, she showcased that there is still room for improvement, hence further trade liberalization reform is needed. Sam Van Damme, lecturer in the School of International Studies at the University of International Business and Economics, analysed the identity politics of the Internet age. He argued that in the Internet era, on the one hand, multinational corporations constantly control the information of people's daily life through automatic data collection technology. On the other hand, netizens can gain greater voice through social media, and thus imagined communities have been created over the Internet.

Professor Dai Changzheng, Dean of the School of International Relations at the University of International Business and Economics, expressed his full support and sincere gratitude to all the guests for their high professional standards. He appreciated the in-depth discussions on many important issues concerning identity and interests. They involved both theoretical issues, as well as many intellectually attractive policy recommendations. He hopes that scholars will continue to participate in the UIBE Summer International Conference and continue to support the international academic exchanges and cooperation of the University of International Business and Economics.

 

Guangming.com report (in Chinese):

http://share.gmw.cn/www/xueshu/2019-07/23/content_33020692.htm

English