AFLSP - Asian Future Leaders Scholarship Program at Kyoto University

Special Lectures in 2021

Thanks to the support of BXAI, we could arrange the following seminars specially designed for AFLSP scholars. Due to the pandemic, all the following seminars will be provided by Zoom.

The 1st & 2nd: Buddhism and cultural values in East Asia

  • Date: June 26 (Sat.), 2021
  • First seminar: 13:30-15:30 (lecture: 14:00-15:30, including break)
  • Second seminar: 15:30-17:30 (discussion: 15:30-17:00, including break)
  • Guest: Prof. Marc-Henri Deroche
  • Moderator: Prof. Liang Zhao
  • Title: Buddhism in East Asia: Revisiting Cultural Values with Mindfulness (Flyer)
  • Abstract of the lecture: It will present the doctrinal foundations of Mahāyāna Buddhism, “the Great Vehicle” 大乗仏教, and, starting with its origins in India, it will offer a historical overview of the apparition and evolution of its different schools across East Asia. In this way, we will consider also some of the relations between Buddhism and other East Asian traditions such as Taoism, Confucianism, or Shintō. We will then focus particularly on a core set of East Asian cultural values, according to the Mahāyāna Buddhist framework of the four “immeasurable minds” 四無量心 (love, compassion, joy, equanimity) and the “six transcendent virtues” 六波羅蜜 (generosity, ethics, patience, courage, meditation, wisdom). Since we “pay” attention to what we “value,” we will then examine the connection between these cultural values and the faculty of controlling one’s attention known in Buddhism as “mindfulness” (正念). We will observe how mindfulness techniques have been researched scientifically, and are now applied more largely in contemporary society, in healthcare, education or at the workplace. Developing at Kyoto University’s Shishukan a philosophical model of mindfulness in connection with the threefold wisdom (三慧) of listening, reflection, and practice (聞・思・修), we will also introduce simple practical exercises of mindfulness that can enhance memory, judgment, and attention. In conclusion, we will have a general discussion about how the ancient wisdom traditions of East Asia can, in dialogue with modern sciences, contribute to reconsider our ways of life in this digital age, and re-envision our future human civilization.

The 3rd: food security and international relations

  • Date: July 3 (Sat.), 2021
  • Time: 10:00-12:00 (lecture starts from 10:30)
  • Guest: Prof. Kosuke Shiraishi
  • Moderator: Ms. Zhu, Yue
  • Title: Achieving food security; insights for discussions at AFLSP@KU
  • Abstract of the lecture: To meet the global demand, agriculture in 2050 would need to produce almost 50 percent more food, feed and biofuel than it did in 2012. The United Nations projected that the world's population would reach 9.73 billion in 2050. A "business-as-usual" approach would not be sufficient to produce food in a sustainable way for an additional two billion people by 2050. To achieve this goal, various challenges need to be addressed in a cooperative manner with all the stakeholders involved, for example, climate change, pandemic, civil conflicts and food losses and wastes. Thanks to technological advancements, there are options including agricultural biotechnology that have a huge potential of helping us accomplish ending hunger. During the talk, an overview of the current state of play about food security will be introduced for stimulating discussions from various perspectives. The discussions may focus on the Asian region, as necessary, given the interest of the participants.

The 4th: EV revolution and its impacts (especially in East Asia)

  • Date: July 24 (Sat), 2021
  • Time: 13:30-15:30 (lecture starts from 14:00)
  • Guest: Prof. ZHANG Tuo) (AFLSP alumni, Graduate School of Economics
  • Moderator: Ms. Zheng, Ziwei
  • Title: The Ongoing EV Revolution and Its Potential Impacts on Global Value Chains in the automotive industry in East Asia
  • Abstract of the lecture: In the past months, most G20 governments announced their national plans to phase out the sales of fossil fuel vehicles in the next thirty years. It is predicted that the sales of Electric Vehicles (EV) will increase to 70 million per year and surpass the conventional vehicles in 2030. EV will surely reconstruct the style of our daily transportation through carbon mitigation and artificial intelligence. This seminar will provide a general review and an outlook on the ongoing EV revolution. Moreover, we will explore the heterogeneous national EV strategies of East Asian Economies. For example, Japan, as the incumbent in the car manufacture industry, takes the Hydro Vehicles as its major strategy, by contrast, China, as a late-comer and challenger, relies more on the pure EVs. We will explore the realistic rationales for these policy selections, and provide an outlook on the potential transitions of the Global Value Chain(GVCs) in the automotive industry in the East Asian region from the viewpoint of industrial organization theories.