Founded in 2013, Oxford China Forum (OCF) is a student-run annual conference aiming to provide insight into the shifting economic, political and cultural landscapes in modern China. As one of the most influential forums on China in Europe, OCF aspires to bring together scholars, professionals in their respective fields, and university students across the UK. In the past two years, OCF has been live broadcasted by iFeng.com, receiving two million views online. Our past speakers include: Kevin Rudd, former Prime Minister of Australia; Sir Christopher Hum, former British Ambassador to China; Xu Xiaoping, founder of Zhenfund; Li Zexiang, chairman of DJI; Liu Zihao, vice-president of jd.com; among many others. We have also had the pleasure to host distinguished novelists like Yan Geling and Feng Tang, accomplished artists like Jin Xing and Xu Bing, and leading scholars like Prof. Rana Mitter and Prof. Nicholas Bunnin.
The theme for OCF2020 is ‘Modern China’. We want to highlight China’s astounding speed of modernisation following the economic reforms forty years ago, and take a close look at the unique version of modernity China has arrived at. Moreover, we want to uncover the complexities and inequalities behind this outward appearance of ‘modernity’ — to truly appreciate its costs and benefits. We believe China cannot be adequately understood with sweeping economic, political or cultural theories; rather, we need to probe the intricacies of the dynamism on a local/micro level. Each and every person in China experiences the country differently — OCF2020 aims to amplify the voices and perspectives of underrepresented groups.
The Heavy Absurdity of Reality: Punk of Contemporary Chinese Films
The Chinese Approach to Economic Globalisation
Health for All: Achievements and Challenges
Women and Chinese Literature Today
Is China the Next Technology Leader?
Decentre/Relocate China: On the Dissolve of 'Boundary' in Contemporary Art
Feminism's Challenges in China: Chinese 'Rural' Feminists in the Digital Age
LocationOxford Union OX1 3JB
Over 30 distinguished speakersScholar, entrepreneurs and professionals
8 Diversified themesAnd a Gala Dinner
Wen Muye is a director in Mainland China. He got his master's degree from Director Apartment of Beijing Film Academy. In 2018, his film Dying to Survive became a big hit in China and won the Best Leading Actor, Best New Director and Best Original Screenplay of the Golden Horse Award. Dying to survive is a 2018 Chinese Comedy-Drama film about a drug smuggler Cheng Yong who bring a cheap drug from India. It raised the attention to drug smuggle and patten protection of drugs. See a subtitled trailer at: https://youtu.be/DsidZCH9RC8
Mr. Xu Xiao-Ping is the Founding Partner of ZhenFund (真格基金)，a leading earlystage fund which has been ranked first in “Top 30 Early-stage Firms of the Year” by Zero2IPO Group for 4 consecutive years. He is known as one of China’s pioneering angel investors. Prior to founding ZhenFund, Mr. Xu was a Co-Founder of New Oriental Education & Technology Group (NYSE: EDU), the largest provider of private education in China. The Founder Magazine named Mr. Xu as “2010 Most Respected Angel Investor” and “2013 Best Angel Investor”. He was also named “2014 Best Angel Investor” by CV Source and given the “2014 Chinese Business Leaders Award” by Phoenix TV. Forbes Magazine listed Mr. Xu as one of China’s “Top 100 Celebrities” in 2004. Mr. Xu has a bachelor’s degree from China Central Conservatory of Music and holds a Ma s ter degree from University of Saskatchewan, Canada. He is currently the President of China Angel Club, China’s top angel investor organisation, President of China Angel Committee by CSRC (China Securities Regulatory Committee).
Dr. Leslie Liu is the Corporate Vice President of JD.com, and Head of JD Cloud Ecosystem. He joined JD Smart in 2014 where he served as VP of JD Smart and GM of smart enterprise division. He incorporated technology into the business platform and started innovative services on JD Cloud like EdTech, MedTech, MarTech, AloT. This new technology and business platform incorporates the capabilities from both JD’s BUs and its partners, extending the business reach of JD group. Dr Liu focuses on the applications of cloud services, with which he is transforming the traditional industries. He works with industry partners to build JD+ ecosystem through corporate-level collaboration, investment, joint ventures, and sponsoring joint events. In 2018, he was awarded by Tencent Marketing Institute and Harvard Business Review the reward for innovations in business models in "30 People of Innovation in China" Before joining JD, Dr. Liu served at IBM GMU Research Headquarters in Shanghai and Prior to that, at the IBM Thomas J. Watson Research Center in Yorktown Heights, New York, where he managed a global portfolio and led several strategic initiatives on Big data and mobile solutions. Dr. Liu is the author of nine patent applications and received the IBM Invention Achievement Award in both 2010 and 2011. He graduated from the USC Viterbi School of Engineering in 2007 with a Ph.D. in Computer Science.
Professor Rana Mitter is a British historian and political scientist of Indian origin who specializes in the history of republican China. He is Professor of the History and Politics of Modern China at the Department of Politics and International Relations at Oxford University, Deutsche Bank Director of the Dickson Poon China Centre, and a Fellow and Vice-Master of St Cross College. His 2013 book China’s War with Japan, 1937-1945: The Struggle for Survival (titled Forgotten Ally: China’s War with Japan, 1937-45 for publication in the US), about the Second Sino-Japanese War, was well received by critics.
Geling Yan is one of the most acclaimed contemporary novelists and screenwriters writing in the Chinese language today and a well-established writer in English. Born in Shanghai, she served with the People's Liberation Army (PLA) during the Cultural Revolution, starting at age 12 as a dancer in an entertainment troupe. She published her first novel in 1985 and has produced a steady stream of novels, short stories, novellas, essays and scripts ever since. Her best-known novels in English are Little Aunt Crane; The Flowers of War; The Banquet Bug; and The Lost Daughter of Happiness. Several of Geling Yan's works have been adapted for film, including internationally distributed films Xiu Xiu: The Sent-Down Girl and Siao Yu. Geling Yan is affiliated with both the Chinese Writers' Association of the People's Republic of China and Hollywood's Writers' Guild of America. She has won over 30 literary and film awards and has had her work translated into fifteen different languages.
Jin Xing is a dancer, choreographer, actress and founder from Shenyang, China. She is also one of China’s most prominent transgender celebrities. Born to ethnic Korean parents, Jin Xing joined the People's Liberation Army at the age of 9 to receive dance and military training. By the age of 20, Jin Xing had emerged as China’s top male dancers, winning a national competition and then going to New York for four years of study. In 1996, one year after undergoing a sex-change operation, she founded the Jin Xing Dance Theatre in Beijing and became Artistic Director of China’s first independent modern dance company. In 2013, she began her ascent to national fame while serving as a judge on China's first season of So You Think You Can Dance. She has later hosted her own television shows, including The Jin Xing Show and Chinese Dating, during which she has drawn up to 100 million views per week. She continues to appear regularly on TV and in the news.
Xu Bing is an artist born in Chongqing, China. He earned his B.A. at the Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing (CAFA) in 1981 and his MFA in 1987. Xu Bing’s work has been displayed at several museums internationally, including the Museum of Modern Art, New York; The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; the British Museum, London; and Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Spain. Additionally, Xu Bing has participated in the 45th, 51st and 56th Venice Biennales, the Biennale of Sydney, and the Johannesburg Biennale amongst other international exhibitions. His work has appeared in major Art History textbooks such as Art Past, Art Present by David Wilkins and Gardner's Art through the Ages: A Global History by Fred S. Kleiner. In 1999, Xu Bing was awarded a MacArthur Fellowship in recognition of his “capacity to contribute importantly to society, particularly in printmaking and calligraphy.” He has also received other prestigious awards, including the 2014 Department of State-Medal of Arts for his efforts to promote cultural understanding through his artworks, and the 14th Fukuoka Asian Culture Award for his “contribution to the development of Asian culture.”
After serving in the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and later as an MP, Kevin successfully led the Australian Labor Party to victory in the 2007 federal election. While in office, Kevin’s government set into motion major reforms in domestic policy areas such as education, social security and infrastructure. Kevin was also active on the international stage, where his considerable experience in foreign affairs assisted him to pursue numerous major policy achievements. Achievements included making advances on climate change action, his role in the establishment of the G20 and diplomacy in moving towards an Asia-Pacific community through multilateral bodies such as the East Asia Summit, ASEAN and APEC. Since leaving Australian politics in 2013, Kevin has continued to engage in international affairs. He has been appointed to many prominent roles such as a Visiting Scholar at Tsinghua University in Beijing, Distinguished Statesman at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, and Distinguished Fellow at both Chatham House and the Paulson Institute at the University of Chicago. He is also Senior Fellow at the Belfer Center at the Harvard Kennedy School. Kevin currently served as the President of the Asia Society Policy Institute in New York.
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