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GIGA publishes series in Chinese

With its GIGA Focus series, the GIGA German Institute of Global and Area Studies boasts a renowned publication with concise analyses of current regional and global developments. Up until now, this series has been put out exclusively in German and English. As of July 2012, a Chinese-language version of the GIGA Focus International Edition will also be published. In general, selected studies of international events and assessments written by GIGA scholars that might spark interest within China will be translated. The acting vice-president of the GIGA along with the Chinese consul general will introduce the series' new edition at the "GIGA Forum" (<www.giga-hamburg.de/giga-forum>) on 18 July.

The acting vice-president of the GIGA along with the Chinese consul general will introduce the series' new edition at the "GIGA Forum" on 18 July. During the evening event at Neuer Jungfernstieg 21, experts from the GIGA and the University of Hamburg will hold a talk entitled "China as a New Global Player: Partner and Competitor of Germany" (<www.giga-hamburg.de/giga-forum>).

By publishing in Chinese, the GIGA is taking a leading role in German academia. In response to the Chinese version of the GIGA Focus International Edition, Consul General of the People's Republic of China YANG Huiqun said: "The city of Hamburg embodies a bridge to Europe for the Chinese economy. For that reason, it's not surprising that academics here have an increasing interest in China. We are pleased about the dialogue that the Chinese-language GIGA Focus will open up, as it will facilitate a deeper exchange - and not only between our two countries."

Professor Detlef Nolte, acting president of the GIGA, adds: "Whoever strives for relevancy in the international scientific community must engage in academic dialogue. Language barriers restrict the selection of dialogue partners. It is a fallacy to believe that English is universally sufficient as a scholarly language. This isn't to suggest that there is a lack of English-language skills; on the contrary, it's simply a sign of serious engagement with Chinese research operations."

The series is set to kick off with a translation of a contribution entitled "Germany and the New Global Players". Senior Research Fellow Professor Robert Kappel, who heads up the GIGA Focus International Edition, says that "China is recognised as a new global player" and that "its ascent will be observed with both great expectations and a certain amount of scepticism".

Kappel points to the fact that in the German experience scholarly language initially underwent a change from Greek to Latin, while in the Indian-Arab sphere, Arabic was the scholarly lingua franca. Then, in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, German, English and French were the standard languages for global academic communication; though in the aftermath of the two World Wars, English received a boost. "The predominant position of English is owed to the fact that English-language studies received special attention due to the standing of the United States. However, academic work should, whenever possible, eliminate any factors that might narrow the vantage point. We are eager to see how much of an impact the step that we're taking here will have on other scholarly and scientific publications internationally."

For more information, please contact: Prof. Dr. Robert Kappel Tel.: 040 - 42825-771 E-mail: robert.kappel@giga-hamburg.de

idw :: 13.07.2012