Two Scientists, one journalist and the President of Greater China at Springer Nature
Following decades of ever-deepening economic, academic and political cooperation and interdependence with China, recent years have been characterized by growing alienation and increasing talk of a new East-West divide. But just as the deepening of ties starting in the 1970s and 1980s was not inevitable, neither is a new Cold War. These large-scale developments always depend on and are shaped by the action of billions of individual people. And there are few demographics as influential as the young and educated generation of Chinese.
In 2020, Xiang Biao, director of the Max Planck institute, published a series of three conversations with Chinese journalist Wu Qi exploring what China was, is, and may become in the future. This book took the country by storm, because it articulated an experience that so many young Chinese shared. Palgrave published the English translation Self as Method last year in Open Access, which has reached over 200,000 readers to date.
To build on this insightful book, we have invited Xiang Biao to a new dialogue with Xifan Yang, China correspondent of German weekly Die Zeit, and Anna Lisa Ahlers, the leader of the Lise-Meitner-Research Group “China in the global academic system”. The panelists will explore the role that Chinese students, researchers and intellectuals play in European research institutions and civil society, and how they can navigate the idiosyncrasies of systems and cultures to help mend the divide East and West.
- Dr. Xiang Biao, is a social anthropologist who was born and educated in China and now the director of the Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology.
- Xifan Yang, born in Hengyang, moved to Germany at the age of four and became an internationally renowned journalist who writes for DIE ZEIT, Sueddeutsche Zeitung, NZZ and other German language Media.
- Dr. Anna Lisa Ahlers, founder and head of Lise Meitner Research Group China in the Global System of Science, MPI History of Science. In Focus: China’s rapid and extensive ascent in the global system.
- Dr. Niels Peter Thomas. President Springer Nature Greater China & Managing Director Books, has lived in China every decade since the 1980s for a few years. He is now working in Shanghai and Heidelberg.
- Moderation: Arend Küster is Director Academic Affairs at Springer Nature and developing open access business in specific regions.