Breakfast seminar: Constructing China’s Belt and Road amidst Pandemic and War

09:00 to 10:30

China’s Belt and Road Initiative is evolving, but the Covid-19 pandemic and the war in Ukraine are stirring questions about its paths. Are the original Chinese visions and ambitions still intact and how are construction projects and overall plans affected?

Launched as an ambitious connectivity idea back in 2013, China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) has since grown into an expansive portfolio of projects and activities, most of which are aimed at building infrastructure and better connecting cities, people and goods across the globe.

With the BRI stirring excitement as well as skepticism in various countries, the Chinese planners have worked hard to engage both domestic and international partners in making the BRI materialize and progress. But they were not preparing for a global multi-year pandemic, nor for a war in Ukraine with multiple and evolving regional and international implications.

What is now the status of the BRI today and how is it affected by the pandemic and the war? How are actors inside China, in neighboring regions and other parts of the world responding?

To seek some answers, we have invited Xiangming Chen, a renowned scholar on BRI-related issues, to share insights from his ongoing research and to discuss with scholars from NUPI and UiO. Chen is a Professor and the Director of Urban Studies, Trinity College (USA), and Guest Professor, Fudan University (China).

He will be in a panel with Heidi Østbø Haugen, Professor in Chinese Studies, University of Oslo and Wrenn Yennie Lindgren, Senior Research Fellow, NUPI.

Moderator is Hans Jørgen Gåsemyr, Senior Research Fellow, NUPI

The event is co-organized by NUPI and the Department of Culture Studies and Oriental Languages (UiO), in correspondence with Chen’s guest researcher stay at UiO, which is sponsored by the Research Council of Norway (RCN)-financed project “Moving up the value chain”. NUPI’s ongoing RCN project Roads to Power addresses the political affects of infrastructure power in Asia

The Fudan-European Centre for China Studies has also provided some organizational support.

A light breakfast will be served from 08:30 AM, and the seminar will take place from 09:00 to 10:30. The event will also be live streamed on NUPI’s YouTube channel(no registration needed for online participation).

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