Almost every department at National Taiwan University (NTU), the nation’s top academic institution, is dropping the “N” from the school’s initials when it holds joint conferences with Chinese schools or cooperates on academic work, sources said yesterday.
The practice, described as “university-wide,” began more than a year ago, a source at the university told the Taipei Times on condition of anonymity, referring to official documents on conferences and panels held with Chinese universities.
According to another academic at the school who was also in a position to see the documents, the removal of the “N” in the university’s official initials — a source of pride for many Taiwanese — applied to “a lot of, if not all departments” involved in exchanges with China. However, it has yet to be determined whether the practice is now official policy at the university or was initiated by department heads or individual academics.
NTU was 87th in this year’s QS World University Rankings.
References to the school as “Taiwan University” began to appear about a year ago, including Peking University’s holding of a “Taiwan University Day” on Dec. 20 last year to “strengthen intercollegiate exchanges and academic co-operations [sic] with our university,” NTU says on its Web site. A special exhibition held in May highlighting the ties between the two universities was titled “Time and space rendezvous between Taiwan University and Peking University.”
A document datelined May 11 on the Peking University Web site refers to NTU as “Taiwan University” and also excises the word “national” from National Chengchi University, National Taiwan Normal University (NTNU), National Central University and National Cheng Kung University.
NTNU confirmed at a forum on cross-strait affairs in July that it had changed its name in advertisements in an effort to attract more Chinese students. That change, which university officials said was a gesture of “goodwill” toward China, was the removal of “national” from its official title.
In August, a neurobiologist at Peking University made the news after insisting that a Taiwanese team led by neurobiologist Chiang Ann-shyn (江安世) of National Tsing Hua University in Hsinchu, which collaborated with Peking University on research, identify the university as being located in “Taiwan, China.”
In addition to the removal of “national” from its official title, there are signs NTU is placing undue emphasis on visiting academics from China at the expense of academics from other countries.
The Web site for NTU’s Institute of Advanced Studies of Humanities and Social Sciences, for example, shows that of the 52 visiting scholars at the institute this year, 46 have been from Chinese universities, with just four from the US and two from Europe.
Indonesia has sent hundreds of riot police to a tiny island after protests broke out against a China-backed project that would displace thousands of residents. About 1,000 people protested in Batam City on Monday over a plan to develop Rempang island into a Chinese-funded economic zone, including the construction of a multibillion-dollar glass factory, that would displace about 7,500 people. Some protesters clashed with security forces outside a government agency, wielding machetes, Molotov cocktails and stones, police said, adding that dozens were arrested. Beijing has poured money into infrastructure and resource projects in Southeast Asia’s biggest economy and its investments have previously caused
CALL FOR PEACE: Czech President Petr Pavel raised concerns about China’s military maneuvers in the Taiwan Strait and its ‘unfriendly action’ in the South China Sea The leaders of three diplomatic allies — Guatemala, Paraguay and Palau — on Tuesday voiced support for Taiwan’s inclusion in the UN on the first day of the UN General Debate in New York. In his address during the 78th UN General Assembly, Palauan President Surangel Whipps Jr urged the UN and all parties involved in cross-strait issues to exercise restraint and seek a peaceful resolution. “The well-being and prosperity of nations and their economies are intrinsically linked to global peace and stability,” he said. He also thanked partner nations such as Taiwan, Australia, Japan and the US for providing assistance
‘HARASSMENT’: A record 103 Chinese warplanes were detected in 24 hours, posing severe challenges to security in the Taiwan Strait and the region, the ministry said Taiwan yesterday told China to stop its “destructive unilateral actions” after more than 100 Chinese warplanes and nine navy ships were detected in areas around the nation. The Ministry of National Defense (MND) described the number of warplanes detected in 24 hours as a “recent high,” while Beijing has so far refrained from issuing any official comment on the sorties. “Between the morning of September 17th to 18th, the Ministry of National Defense had detected a total of 103 Chinese aircraft, which was a recent high and has posed severe challenges to the security across the Taiwan Strait and in the region,”
China would be making “a grave strategic mistake” if it tried to attack Taiwan, US Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman General Mark Milley said in an interview with CNN that aired on Sunday. Asked by host Fareed Zakaria whether the US could repel a Chinese invasion of Taiwan, Milley said: “It is entirely possible.” Milley reiterated that the US still maintains the Taiwan Relations Act, and that it wants “a peaceful outcome between Taiwan and the People’s Republic of China, and whatever that is between those two peoples.” “Militarily, I think China would make a grave strategic mistake if they attempted to