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Confucius Institute of Hong Kong sets up two research centers


09:43, March 02, 2013

HONG KONG, March 1 (Xinhua) -- The Confucius Institute of Hong Kong (CIHK) opened two research centers on Friday to further enhance teaching and learning of the Chinese language and to promote international understanding of Chinese history and culture.

The two centers -- the Research Center for Chinese History and Culture and the Research Center for Chinese Language Teaching -- were unveiled at an opening ceremony by officials and scholars from the Hanban (the China National Office for Teaching Chinese as a Foreign Language) and the Confucius Institute Headquarters, the Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) and the CIHK on PolyU campus.

Prof. Ma Jianfei, deputy chief executive of Confucius Institute Headquarters and deputy director-general of Hanban, said, "The establishment of the two centers is an important means to fulfill the Confucius Institute Development Plan (2012-2020) published recently encouraging Confucius Institutes to conduct high-level Chinese teaching and contemporary China studies, so as to become an important academic platform to learn about China."

The two centers closely related to one new mission of the CIHK -- the promotion of international sinology, said Prof. Angelina Yuen, PolyU vice president and chairman of the Council of CIHK. She expressed the hope that CIHK would build a bridge for friendship and understanding by means of language learning and teaching and cultural activities.

CIHK Director Prof. Chu Hung-lam said the two research centers will serve as institutional applicants and administrators of research grants, coordinators of research projects, coordinators of research and writing of teaching and reading materials, and facilitators of seminars and conferences, to help the CIHK develop into an international center of advanced Chinese studies.

The CIHK Research Center for Chinese History and Culture is to actively facilitate high quality cultural activities, while the CIHK Center for Chinese Language Teaching is to facilitate research activities that support the teaching of Chinese language, he said.

Prof. Chen Lai, director of Tsinghua Academy of Chinese Learning and research fellow of Central Research Institute of Culture and History, also launched this year's "Distinguished Lecture Series on Chinese Culture and Religion" and hosted an inaugural lecture -- "Confucianism and Contemporary China" after the opening ceremony.

The CIHK is the only Confucius Institute in Hong Kong and the only one of its kind in Chinese territories. Located in PolyU, it was founded in 2005 and officially inaugurated in 2006.

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