The International Institute for Cultural Studies, University System of Taiwan (IICS-UST) is Taiwan’s first ever inter-university academic institution that features innovative research and inter-disciplinary approaches to teaching in social sciences and humanities.
The Institute has established an interdepartmental Master’s program in Inter-Asia Cultural Studies. The program offers comprehensive knowledge of Asian societies, histories, and cultures with special focuses on modern intellectual thoughts, social theories, gender/sex studies, and visual and film studies.
Aiming to become one of the leading research centers in Asia, the institute highlights four interdisciplinary research clusters, which respectively specialize in Critical Theory and Asian Modernity (Convened by Prof. Kuan-Hsing Chen, NCTU), Contemporary Thought-trends and Social Movements (Convened by Prof. Ding-Tzan Li, NTHU), Gender/Sexuality Studies (Convened by Prof. Josephine Chuen-Juei Ho, NCU), and Visual Culture Studies (Convened by Prof. Pin-chia Feng, NCTU). Each cluster is supported by 15-25 outstanding scholars and specialists in humanities and social sciences, while IICS-UST connects 19 member departments and 7 academic centers.
With renowned professors and promising junior researchers working together, IICS and its four research clusters promote academic exchange and scholarly collaboration across national borders. Ongoing projects include:
A. The International Chair Professors Program
IICS invites international scholars to perform research and instruct at departments and affiliated research centers.
B. The Short-term Visiting Scholars Program
Thought exchange is facilitated via speech series and courses designed on a short-term basis.
C. The International Graduate Student Exchange Program
The IICS-UST graduate students have enjoyed networking with the wider international academic community as the institute is engaged in running workshops and transnational thematic summer schools.
D. The International Workshops and Conferences Program
Each research cluster regularly organizes workshops and international conferences to foster progress in relevant research.
E. The Global Publication Program
On the basis of workshops and conferences it has helped organize in Taiwan and around the globe, IICS has been active in coordinating both locally and globally-oriented publication projects.
International Academic Networks
A. The Distinguished Scholar Lecture Series
In past years, IICS-UST has invited leading scholars from around the world to deliver series of lectures that give insight into contemporary issues. These include Professor Roy Bin Wong of UCLA Asia Institute Director, Honorary Professor Partha Chatterjee of the Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta, and Japanese philosopher and literature critic Karatani Kojin.
B. International Cooperation Agreements
The Institute has signed pacts with Chinese University of Hong Kong, the University of Hong Kong, and the University of Sydney. Talks on academic cooperation are ongoing with the Institute of Philosophy at the University of Tokyo, the University of California, Irvine, the University of California, Los Angeles, Rutgers State University of New Jersey, and Leiden University.
C. International Networks
IICS-UST started working with the Consortium of Inter-Asia Cultural Studies Institute in 2006, and with Ici-et-ailleur: Association pour une Philosophie Nomade in 2005. It also collaborates with the Centre for Contemporary Cultural Studies at Shanghai University, the Si-Mian Institute for Advanced Studies in Humanities at East China Normal University Shanghai, the Center of Advanced Studies in Social Science and Humanities at Tsing Hua University Beijing, and the Center for Studies of Marxist Social Theory at Nanjing University, among other prestigious institutes.