Institute of East Asian Studies

DFG Projects at IN-EAST

The DFG also provides a significant amount of funding for the research at IN-EAST. The DFG Research Training Group 1613 “Risk and East Asia” was positively evaluated in 2013 by the DFG review panel, and the funding period was extended for another four and a half years. Its report concluded that the training group, which is firmly anchored in social sciences and economics, “… distinguishes […] itself favorably from the common mainly philological approaches, in particular with regard to research on China.” Extension of the Research Training Group is therefore expected to bring with it further important impetus for area studies in Germany.

Research Training Group 1613 – Risk and East Asia

The “Risk and East Asia” research programme analyses the impact of four “large processes” of contemporary institutional transformations on shifting risks in East Asia: marketisation, individualisation, decentralisation, and transnationalisation. The project aims to contribute to the ­European research debate on global transformations by examining recent developments in East Asia and delivering new findings in risk research.
The research training programme involves strong international collaboration. One of its key innovations is the “mobile training” concept, in which intensive research and field work are ­organised at Renmin University of China and the University of Tokyo with the participation of East Asian peers and prominent scholars to prepare doctoral candidates for their own research projects in the region. Numerous international scholars regularly take up the invitations of the Research Training Group and contribute through workshops and lectures to the young researchers’ education and training at IN-EAST. The first ­doctoral fellows successfully completed their projects in December 2013. Funding period: 2014–2018. 

Cross-Border Temporary Staffing. Market-Making and Transnational Regulation in Inter-Regional Comparison

The leading research questions of the DFG project concern how and why markets for temporary labour are taking on transnational dimensions and to what extent it is possible to govern and regulate them. Transnationalisation studies often take developments in the EU as their point of reference. IN-EAST’s many years of experience in East Asia make it possible to arrive at general conclusions beyond European boundaries.
Current research shows temping agency placements across national borders in line with regional economic integration to have risen equally in both Europe and East Asia. In Europe this applies to workers from Hungary, the Czech Republic and especially Poland, while in East Asia China is an important destination for and origin of this form of labour migration. Funding period: 2014–2018.

Politics and Autonomy in the Local State – County and Township Cadres as Strategic Actors in the Chinese Reform Process

County and township cadres have a high degree of autonomy vis-à-vis the central state. The DFG research programme analyses to what extent they constitute a strategic group with a collective identity in China’s political system and how this impacts on the state’s capacity to act and on its legitimacy as a regime. The project has been extended by the DFG until the end of 2014.