The Global Intensification of Supplementary Education

Memo #271

Featuring Julian Dierkes

Recently, Ee-Seul Yoon of the Faculty of Education at UBC in coordination with the Asia Pacific Memo sat down with Dr. Julian Dierkes, Associate Professor and Keidanren Chair in Japanese Research at UBC’s Institute for Asian Research, to pose a few questions about Professor Dierkes’ recently co-edited volume, Out of the Shadows: The Global Intensification Of Supplementary Education, which was published in December 2013… Continue reading

NYU Shanghai and the Future of International Higher Education in China

Memo #261

By Joel Heng Hartse – joelhartse [at]

New York University Shanghai recently completed its first semester of operations. Though NYU Shanghai was recently touted by National Public Radio as the first Sino-U.S. joint university, there are in fact hundreds of approved joint-degree programs and more than thirty jointly run Sino-foreign universities operating in China—and the trend seems to be growing. Other prominent institutions include Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University… Continue reading

Japan-China Relations: Issues and Prospects (Video Interview with Akio Takahara) – Part 2 of 2

Memo #254

Featuring Akio Takahara

In part two of his interview with the Asia Pacific Memo (see part one here), Dr. Akio Takahara , a professor in the Graduate School of Law and Politics at the University of Tokyo and a recognized authority on contemporary Chinese politics and Japan-China relations, talks about bridging the divides in Japan-China relations. Dr. Takahara contrasts the “resilient” versus the “fragile” aspects of… Continue reading

China’s Environmental Education: A Mandate Unfulfilled

Memo #245

By Rob Efird – efirdr [at]

China’s environmental impacts are front-page news. We have all seen the pictures of smog-choked cities and fouled waterways, and many of us know that China is the single largest source of the carbon emissions that drive global warming. It is encouraging, then, that in 2003 China’s Ministry of Education mandated environmental… Continue reading

The Role of the University in Singapore (Video Interview with Dr. Philip Holden)

Memo #179 – The role of the university in Asia has changed over time. Many Asian universities were colonial institutions, and then incubators for nationalist thought. In contemporary Asia, they have key economic functions, attracting foreign students and research capital, often in state capitalist societies. Continue reading

Canada-China Education Projects (Video Interview with Dr. Ruth Hayhoe) (Part 2/2)

Memo #162 – In part two of our interview Dr. Hayhoe provides insight on how the next generation can learn from previous Canada-China education projects. She discusses what Canadians can gain from the Confucian tradition of education, analyzes Hong Kong’s education system in response to influences from mainland China, and shares her goals for the project. Continue reading

How Finnish, not East Asian Education Became a Global Reference

Memo #132 – Finnish education has become the global symbol of educational excellence since its success in the Organization for Economic Development and Cooperation’s (OECD) Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) implemented triennially since 2000. Every year, a few thousand international visitors, including many from East Asian nations, flock to the small Nordic nation to discover “how Finland gets it right.” Continue reading


Memo #132 – 2000年以来、3年毎に実施されているOECDの国際的な学習到達度調査(以下PISA)において好成績を収めたフィンランドは、優れた教育改革のモデルとして世界中の教育関係者の注目を集めている。毎年数千人もの海外教育関係者がこの北欧の小国を訪れており、東アジアからも多くの人々がそのPISA成功の「秘訣」を探りに、「フィンランド詣で」を敢行している。 Continue reading

Misinterpreting Globalization in the Context of Japanese Education Policy

Memo #43 – In a recent keynote address to the annual meeting of the Japan Studies Association of Canada hosted by UBC’s Centre for Japanese Research, Takehiko Kariya (Oxford University) argued that many changes in educational policy in Japan in the past fifteen years have been motivated by an understanding of globalization in terms of a knowledge economy. Policy makers were mistaken in this understanding. Instead, another impact of globalization has become more visible recently in Japan: the decline of full-time, long-term jobs. Rising inequality and lack of career opportunities rooted in a class-based distribution of learning competency, or the ability to learn, are being exacerbated rather than ameliorated by misguided educational policies. Continue reading