The Asian Dynamics Initiative (ADI) is pleased to announce the international conference 'Growth: Critical Perspectives from Asia' to be held at the University of Copenhagen on 13-14 June 2013.
The conference will take place over two days and feature distinguished keynote speakers as well as panels examining the notion of growth from an Asian perspective and from multi-disciplinary vantage points – cultural, economic and social.
'Growth: Critical Perspectives on Asia' is the fifth in a series of annual conferences initiated by ADI in 2008. ADI is a cross-faculty and interdisciplinary effort to meet the current challenges and demands for better knowledge of and deeper insights into Asian matters.
Over the past fifty years we have witnessed phenomenal economic growth in Asia, lifting millions of people out of poverty, and propelling many Asian nations to premier ranks in the global order, but as the social and ecological costs become more apparent, economic and demographic growth looms as both promise and peril. The concept of growth has not only been central to economic theory and ecological critique, but also to social and cultural theories of societal and civilizational transformation that increasingly challenges universalizing Western notions of modernity. This conference critically examines the notion of growth and the ways in which it is shaping social-political landscapes in Asia. We define and question growth in this very broad sense, implying that quantitative changes are inevitably accompanied by qualitative transformations, and paying equal attention to the intricate interconnectedness of naturally occurring growth and human interference as well as to its limitations, stagnation, decline and renewal. Understood in this extended sense, the term and related concepts can be fruitfully used to explore social, economic and cultural processes across time and space within the macro-region of Asia (and beyond) from cross-disciplinary perspectives.
Based on this notion of growth not as an autonomous, self-determined entity but as the outcome of close and constant interaction between nature and purposeful human action, at this conference we propose to rethink and scrutinize this concept from an Asian perspective and from multi-disciplinary vantage points - cultural, economic and social.
15 January 2013 Deadline for submitting abstracts
15 February 2013 Notification of acceptance
27 May 2013 Deadline for submitting paper
Please visit the conference website to read the full call for abstracts http://asiandynamics.ku.dk/english/growth/. Abstracts including title, name and affiliation should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The conference is organized by the Asian Dynamics Initiative, a cross-faculty and inter-disciplinary research priority area at the University of Copenhagen.
Guest lecture by visiting researcher Shawn Bender
Based on ethnographic fieldwork in Japan, this paper explores how Japanese roboticists use the specter of an aging society to legitimize their research and robots in the face of criticism and failure. The paper argues first that through this legitimation the concept of an “aging society” shifts from a mere description of a projected future to a discursive apparatus that helps direct investment and rationalize intervention in the present. It examines further how vulnerable such projections are to the force of contemporary events.
Shawn Bender is Associate Professor at Department of East Asian Studies, Dickinson College. He is in Copenhagen to do his research which is an ethnographic study of the use of Japanese robotics technologies for therapy in Danish nursing homes. This builds on work that was carried out in Japan and in Denmark last year.
Venue: NIAS, Øster Farimagsgade 5, 1353 Copehagen K