Report on GCD II: ‘Transculturality and New Global Governance’

Xiangqun Chang

British sociologists and the BSA as ‘Honorary Organizer’ were important con- tributors to the only social science event for the ‘Year of UK–China Cultural Exchange’, designated as 2015 in an agreement between the Chinese and British governments. The UK organized events in China in the first six months and China in the second. Within this framework, on the initiative of sociologist and social anthropologist Dr Xiangqun Chang, Director of CCPN Global and Honorary Professor in the UCL, the 2nd Global China Dialogue (GCD II) was held at the British Academy on 23 and 24 November, 2015.

In addition to CCPN Global, the University of Westminster and Fudan University of China, where Dr Chang holds Visiting Professorships, were organ- izers, along with the BSA and CAWPS (Chinese Association of World Politics Studies) as honorary organizers. Support came from the Cultural Office of the Chinese Embassy to the UK and the Beijing Office of the British Council, as well as from many other institutions inside and outside China. Over 50 academics, politicians, consultants, professionals and entrepreneurs from China and the UK, as well as from France, Belgium, Hong Kong and the USA, gathered together to discuss the theme ‘Transculturality and New Global Governance’.

The conference was also the only event in the Year of UK–China Cultural Exchange to have a global focus. It was prompted by the key term ‘cultural creativity’, which the two countries had adopted when they planned a series of high-level cultural activities in order to promote cultural communication and industrial collaboration, as well as mutual understanding and friendship. GCD II extended this concept to comprise ‘social creativity’ and took it as an invitation to enable the dialogue between the two countries to have a wider applicability to the global issues that every country must address today.

In the spirit of dialogue, all sessions included speakers from both China and the UK. Mr Xiang Xiaowei, the Minister Counsellor, Culture Office, Chinese Embassy to the UK, opened by posing a number of questions for the participants, such as how an economic development model with a linear structure can be suitable for every country and how global governance can work when countries are so diverse. Lord Timothy Clement-Jones CBE, Deputy Chair of The All Party Parliamentary China Group, addressed the impacts of income inequalities and the way they might shape the UN, WTO, IMF and the World

Bank, looking forward to China’s forthcoming chairmanship of the G20, with its extraordinarily wide agenda in terms of global governance. Mr Charles Grant, Director of the Centre for European Reform (ECR), talked about the European Union’s relationship with China, what it means for global governance and also the prospect of Britain leaving the EU, what it means for the EU relationship with China. Professor Martin Albrow, FAcSS, Honorary Vice-President of the BSA, highlighted the aspiration of GCD II to enhance the concepts for mutual understanding that a new global governance would need.

Keynote  speeches  were  given  by  Professor  BING  Zheng,  Executive Vice-President, Jilin University of China, and Vice-President of the China So- ciological Association (CSA); and Professor Kerry Brown, the newly appointed Director of the Lau China Institute, King’s College London. Prof Bing called for ‘Cultural communication and regional cooperation in globalization’ to resolve the cultural contradictions between globalism and nationalism, idealism and utilitarianism, ‘masterism’ and ‘massism’. Professor Brown asked, ‘Do political elites in China matter any more?’, pointing to the huge increase of frequency of visits to foreign countries from the time of Mao Zedong to the present with Xi Jinping, and asked for comparative perspectives between China and other countries on the issues of nationalism and national identity and their effects on global governance.

Professor Yu Shuo (Hong Kong Polytechnic), Founding Director of the Centre for Transcultural Communication in HK Poly, emphasized that transcul- turality involved cultural generativity, the creation of new possibilities for global governance. British sociologists contributing included Professor Sam Whimster (London Metropolitan University) speaking on the difficulties of transcultural conversation, Professor Scott Lash (Goldsmiths, University of London) on China’s new ruralism, and Martin Albrow on global governance as public philosophy.

At the closing session, Dr Maurizio Marinelli, Co-director of the Sussex Asia Centre at the University of Sussex, spoke about the transcultural discourses on advancing global prosperity in the Anthropocene. The closing speech was given by Professor Gil Delannoi, Research Director of the FNSP, Centre for Political Research, Sciences Po, France, entitled ‘From dialogue to cooperation– building instead of talking’. He suggested that global governance should begin with cooperation at different levels, with different skills. Institutional design was urgently required, especially for environmental problems, security and stability, in particular for world markets. Professor Chang, winding up the conference, thanked all the speakers, organizers, supporters and participants who had con- tributed to the success of a unique event. It exemplified how a charitable academic organization participated in global governance by engaging mainstream institutions working together to build global society across disciplines, institu- tions and cultures.

During the event, the launch of the Journal of China in Comparative Perspective and two books series by CCPN Global were announced, dual-language publications with the aim to bridge the divides between Chinese and Western social science.

Note: This report was published in the Network, magazine of the British Sociological Association, Spring, 2016.

第二届全球中国对话活动报导:

“超文化与新型全球治理”

常向群

        作为‘荣誉主办者’, 英国社会学者和英国社会学协会是按照中国和英国政府的协议指定在2015年举办的‘中英文化交流年’唯一的社会科学活动的重要贡献者。英国在第一个六个月在中国组织活动而中国在第二个六个月。在这个框架下, 依全球中国比 较研究会会长及伦敦大学学院荣誉教授,社会学者和社会人类学者常向群博士提出的倡议,第二届全球中国对话于2015年11月23及24日在英国社会科学院举行。 除了全球中国比较研究会,常博士担任客座教授的西敏寺大学和特聘教授的中国复旦大学也是主办者,加上英国社会学协会及中国世界政治研究协会作为荣誉主办者。支持来自中国大使馆文化处 和英国文化协会北京办事处, 及很多中国内外的机构。超过50位来自中国和英国,乃至法国、比利时、香港和美国的学者、政治家、 顾问、专业人士和企业家聚在一起讨论 ‘超文化与新型全球治理’ 议题。会议也是中英文化交流年中唯一有全球焦点的活动。两国计划了一系列高层次文化活动以促进文化沟通和工业合作,并在互相理解和友谊中均以“文化创意”概念为关键词,第二届全球中国对话将这个概念伸延到包括 ‘社会创意’及将之作为一个邀请去使两国之间的对话在当今每个国家都必须解决的全球问题 上具有更广泛的适用性。

        在对话的精神下,  所有小组包括来自中国和英国的讲者。中国驻英国大使馆文化处公使衔参赞项晓炜先生通过向与会者提出一些问题开始了我们的会议, 例如一个有线性结构的经济发展模式怎样可以适用于每一个国家和当各国都如此不同的时候全 球治理如何进行。英国议会跨党派中国小组副组长克莱门特·琼斯勋爵谈到收入不平等的影响和它们可能影响联合国,世界贸易组织,国际货币基金组织和世界银行的方式,并期待着中国作为即将到来的有着非常广泛全球治理方面议程的G20主席。欧洲改革中心主任查尔斯·格兰特先生谈了欧盟和中国的关系,这对全球治理和英国离开欧盟的前景有什么意义,对欧盟与中国的关系有什么意义。英国社科院院士及英国社会学会名誉副主席马丁·阿尔布劳教授突出了第二届全球中国对话加强一个新的全球治理所需要的相互理解的概念的愿望。

        中国吉林大学常务副校长和中国社会学会副主席邴正教授及英国伦敦国王学院中国研究中心副主任;凯瑞·布朗教授发表了主旨演讲。邴教授提出以‘全球化中的文化沟通和地区合作’去解决全球主义和民族主义, 理想主义和功利主义, ‘精英主义’和‘大众主义’之间的文化矛盾。布朗教授问:‘在中国的 政治精英还有关系吗?’, 指向从毛泽东时代到现在习近平到外国访问的频率的大幅增加,并问到中国和其他国家对民族主义和 国家认同及其对全球治理的影响的比较视角。

        香港理工大学超文化对话研究中心创办主任于硕教授强调超 文化涉及文化生成性和全球治理的新可能性的创造。作出贡献的英国社会学者包括伦敦都市大学山姆·威敏斯特教授谈及超文化对话的困难,伦敦大学哥德史密斯学院斯科特·拉什教授谈到中国的新农村主义,及马丁·阿尔布劳教授谈到将全球治理作为公共哲学。 在闭幕式中,英国萨塞克斯大学亚洲研究中心共同主任毛里奇奥·马里内利博士谈到在人类世促进全球繁荣的跨文化论述。 闭幕词由法国科学院研究主任和法国巴黎政治学院政治研究中心主任吉尔·德拉诺瓦教授发表,题为‘从对话到合作建筑而不是说话’。他建议全球治理应该从不同级别的合作开始, 用不同的技 术。机构性的设计是迫切需要的,特别是环境问题,安全性和稳定性以及世界市场。常教授总结会议, 感谢对这个特别的活动 作出过贡献的所有讲者, 组织者, 支持者和参与者。它显示了一个公益性学术组织如何通过将主流机构联合起来建立跨学科,通过机构和文化的全球社会去参与全球治理。

        在活动中宣布了全球中国比较研究会推出的中国比较研究学刊和两本丛书,目的是弥合中国和西方社会科学之间的鸿沟的双语出版。

*: 这份报告发表在2016年春季的英国社会学协会的杂志《 网络》。

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