Strengthening academic links and internationalising research

Leeds Researchers participate in the UK-China Researcher Links International Conference.

Six researchers from the University of Leeds participated in the UK-China Researcher Links initiative hosted by Jinan University, Guangzhou, China, in mid-July 2016.

The workshop’s theme was on ‘Rural-urban Migration and Inclusionary Urbanisation in China’. It was supported by a British Council (Newton Fund) - National Science Foundation of China collaborative research grant.

The project’s UK principal investigator is Dr Heather Zhang (East Asian Studies), University of Leeds. Professor Adrian Favell, Sociology and Social Policy at Leeds delivered a keynote speech on ‘Theoretical and Methodological Approaches to Migration Research, and their Policy Relevance’, and four other Leeds early career researchers working in multi- and inter-disciplinary fields of China studies and migration studies - Dr Sarah Dodd (EAS), Miss Huimin Wang (EAS/English), Dr Gabriella Alberti (LUBS), and Dr Albert Varela (SSP) - were invited to present their research.

The project’s objectives are: 1) To address the pressing challenges to the development of economic and social welfare by focusing on migration and related policy issues and debates in China and beyond; 2) To gather ECRs working in the field from China and the UK, and strengthen capacity through training and guidance provided by leading scholars from both countries; 3) To explore the possibility of further research collaboration and sustain future research links between participating scholars by developing new connections between China and the UK, exchanging ideas, establishing contact, interactions and networking; 4) To generate impact on policy and practice by engaging with a range of stakeholders and users, leading to potential positive change in respect of institutional reforms, social solidarity, inclusionary urbanisation, and on the lives, livelihoods and well-being of migrants and their families.

More than 50 ECRs and senior scholars from top UK and Chinese universities participated in the event, and representatives from various policy spheres were also present. This international workshop has laid a solid foundation for advancing and strengthening the internationalisation of UK and Chinese research and higher education, as well as future scholarly exchanges, links and networks among ECRs from the two countries.