50 Perspectives on China - Book Launch and Discussion

Felix Lee im Gesrpäch mit Dr. Christine D. Althauser
© Alexis Gshtrayn-Fotografie

Presentation of the anthology "50 Voices: 50 Statements on 50 Years of Diplomatic Relations between Germany and China" and Panel Discussion with Felix Lee

Book Launch at the Robert Bosch Foundation

On the occasion of the 50th anniversary of German-Chinese diplomatic relations, the German-Chinese Dialogue Forum (DCDF) in collaboration with the European Academy Berlin released the anthology "50 Voices" (edited by Annette Schavan, Mikko Huotari, and Christian Johann), which was presented at the Robert Bosch Foundation on May 8, 2023. The anthology showcases 50 perspectives from academia, business, politics, and culture on the past, present, and future of relations between Germany and China. In doing so, the DCDF not only commemorates the 50th anniversary of diplomatic relations between the two nations but also looks ahead. In addition to providing intellectual insights, the subsequent reception offered an opportunity to engage in conversations with the authors on the evening's topics.

Highlights of German-Chinese Relations - Conversations on the Chapters of the Anthology

Annette Schavan, co-chair of the German-Chinese Dialogue Forum, and several authors present their perspectives on German-Chinese relations and respective thematic fields in the anthology "50 Voices." Following the welcoming remarks by the director of the EAB, Dr. Christian Johann, the host Kerstin Lohse-Friedrich, and the director of MERCIS, Dr. Mikko Huotari, journalist and author Felix Lee moderated the evening. In the panel discussion, Lee delved into the book with five contributors and China experts, including Dr. Christine D. Althauser (former ambassador), Oliver Radkte (head of the Heinrich Böll Foundation's office in Beijing), Dr. Nora Frisch (publisher and founder of Drachenhaus Verlag), Dieter Ernst (former undersecretary), and Dr. Yan Xu-Lackner (director of the Confucius Institute Nuremberg-Erlangen at Friedrich-Alexander University). They engaged in conversations about the current debates and future of Europe and China. By focusing on each of the five chapters, these discussions provided further inspiration for the exchange throughout the evening and beyond. Concluding remarks were given by Petra Sigmund (ambassador and head of Asia-Pacific Division at the Federal Foreign Office) and Annette Schavan (former federal minister). Following the event, guests and authors had the opportunity to interact and collect a copy of the anthology at the EAB booth.

Few topics dominate the headlines these days as much as the relations between Europe and China. The societies of China and Germany are undergoing a noticeable phase of change that affects us all. Just as dynamics overlap and are catalyzed by global political moments, the relations between China and Germany are also undergoing transformation. During the book presentation, attendees had the chance to make their voices heard and share their suggestions for promoting German-Chinese dialogue. The collected proposals particularly emphasize the desire for increased (civil) exchange opportunities. Other ideas from the audience included joint innovation promotion and more lightness and humor in diplomacy.

Voices from the Audience

Feedback Zettel DCDF

Looking Back and Moving Forward

On October 11, 1972, the Federal Republic of Germany and the People's Republic of China officially established diplomatic relations. In 2005, the German-Chinese Dialogue Forum was launched through a state treaty between the Federal Republic of Germany and the People's Republic of China. Over the years, mutual visits, joint events, and conversations have provided a platform for discussing commonalities and challenges. The forum's delegates directly reported their exchange to their respective governments. The anthology "50 Voices" serves as a testament to dialogue and the enhancement of European China expertise.

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