On the 22 and 23 January 2019, the University of Nottingham Asia Research Institute was officially launched on the University of Nottingham’s Malaysian Campus.
Professor Katharine Adeney led two extremely well attended sessions introducing UoNARI to colleagues from the sciences, engineering, the arts and social sciences. She also held meetings with the Director and former Director of the Institute of Asia and Pacific Studies, which took the decision to rename itself as the University of Nottingham Asia Research Institute –Malaysia - to project our expertise on Asia in the region and beyond.
In addition to meetings with colleagues discussing particular research agendas notably that on Sustainable Palm Oil and the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), an extremely successful and well attended roundtable was held on Interdisciplinary approaches to the BRI. The Roundtable was introduced by William Case, Head of the School of Politics, History and International Relations. He identified five phases of the BRI, noting how there is more scepticism surrounding the project than there was at its inception. Benjamin Barton spoke next, identifying areas of previous EU-China security co-operation and questioning whether such cooperation could be extended to the BRI projects – many of which have been violently attacked.
Katharine Adeney then presented her research (co-authored with UoNARI Visiting Research Fellow, Filippo Boni) on how the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor was affecting the domestic politics within Pakistan, specifically in terms of centre-province and civil-military relations. Alex Lechner then concluded, demonstrating that the BRI projects were located in areas of extreme biodiversity, and that attention needed to be paid at an early stage of project design, to mitigate negative effects.
Posted on Tuesday 1st January 2019