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Opening of the Annual Conference 2015

Oct 08, 2015

The seventh Annual Conference of the Cluster “Asia and Europe in a Global Context”/HCTS was opened on Wednesday, October 7, 2015. Scholars from various disciplines and from across the globe discuss the topic “Scales of Knowledge: Zooming In and Zooming Out”. It is organized by Research Area C "Knowledge Systems".

The conference addresses the usages of “scales” in transcultural studies. Scales have been widely discussed in a range of disciplines as an ontological assumption about the “real” dimensions of social and natural phenomena, a methodological means to observe different aspects of the same object, and a focus used by human actors to organize their experiences of the world.

The conference featured a keynote lecture by the Anthropologist Prof. George Marcus (University of California, Irvine), who spoke about “‘Scale’ As a Problem of Contemporary Ethnographic Practice”. The lecture took place in the Alte Aula on Wednesday, October 7. It was accompanied by a musical performance by the Taiwanese ensemble 3peoplemusic, who presented more traditional and more experimental musical scales on their traditional instruments. Their performance was sponsored by Spotlight Taiwan.

The panel programme on Thursday and Friday took place at the Karl Jaspers Centre. Four morning panels discussed “National, Local and Global Scales in the Study of Modern East Asia”, “‘Global’ vs. ‘Local’ Scales: A Misleading Distinction?”, “Scales of Environmental Knowledge I: Technologies, Representations and Power” and “Scales of Environmental Knowledge II: Waterscapes and their Boundaries”. The parallel afternoon panels presented the results of the wide-ranging research carried out by scholars in the cross-regional and transdisciplinary setting of the Cluster.

The Annual Conference of the Cluster of Excellence “Asia and Europe in a Global Context”/Heidelberg Centre for Transcultural Studies took place from October 7 - 9, 2015, at Heidelberg University. It was organised by Prof. Dr. William Sax, Prof. Dr. Joachim Kurtz, and Shupin Lang on behalf of Research Area C "Knowledge Systems".

Please visit the conference website for the detailed programme


  • William Sax introducing the conference

  • Musicians, keynote speaker and organisers

  • Audience in the Alte Aula