Faculty of East Asian Studies

Taiwan: Melting Pot and Innovation Hub: Collected Essays by the Project Group TAP (Taiwan as Pionier)

All collected essays, including the prefatory note and introduction, can be downloaded [here].

In Taiwan, Western-style education is a phenomenon of colonial modernity. Modern schools and teachers changed Taiwan, altering it from the Qing Empire’s island frontier into a modern community that could assert its unique identity in the global society. The story of this century-long transformation begins with the Normal School 國語學校, the first modern school in Taiwan. To assimilate the Taiwanese into the Japanese Empire by means of the Japanese language, the colonial government established primary schools across Taiwan and instituted the Normal School in Taihoku (today’s Taipei).



As Japan took over Taiwan after 1895, in the following fifty years, Taiwan underwent a dramatic transformation in every aspect of society, particularly in economy and the utilzation of space. In Chiayi, the opening of the Chiayi Sawmill and the introduction of the modern lumber industry changed the spatial and economic landscape of the city. Its establishment signaled the beginning of the golden age of forestry in Taiwan. However, the dynamics between the city and the new industry has been neglected in current scholarship, which has concentrated on investigating the mountains and the colonial management of the forest resources.



In Chinese culture, the tradition of yuezi (月子) or the practice of postpartum care for the mother is a longtime established practice. In Taiwan’s case, this practice underwent and continues to undergo the vicissitudes of social and interpersonal relationship changes. The main goal of yuezi was the mothers’ recuperation of physical force in order to restart the domestic and field work on the one hand, and the restoration of women’s reproductive capacity on the other. However, the modernization of the country caused huge changes in social arrangements. Accordingly, the practices of yuezi underwent important changes, both in terms of yuezi-related behavior and also in the conception of this tradition. The apparition of yuezi centers (月子中心) is doubtlessly one of them.



Environmental impacts and changes are not going unnoticed by the Taiwanese population. Besides public demonstrations, rallies and reception in the media, such environmental, cultural and language related consciousness naturally reveals itself in Taiwanese literature like poetry, novels, etc. To better understand the situation, poetry written in Taiwanese Minnan is particularly relevant. Its importance has been rising in recent decades, it is the most utilized language after Mandarin and the mother tongue especially of the middle-aged and elderly population.



Global challenges affect societies regardless of regime type and welfare status. Yet their political coping strategies vary drastically. While the settings of the People’s Republic of China and the Republic of China share a common cultural history, their political cultures have evolved apart. Ultimately, this has spawned two systems. Those differences indicate the relevance for research on participatory approaches and the need for a systemic comparison in order to highlight the outcomes regarding their political framework for innovation polity and policy as a strategy to successfully cope with global challenges. This pre-study research analyses coping strategies for global challenges between the People's Republic of China and the Republic of China by contrasting them. Due to the economic rise of the People’s Republic of China, its innovation industry and policy is quite well studied, while the relevance of Taiwan’s innovative ability and efficiency remains underexposed, especially when it comes to the key capabilities and key industries, such as the production of semiconductors.




Director: Christine Moll-Murata
E-mail: Christine.Moll-Murata@ruhr-uni-bochum.de
Office: Uni134 (3.13)
Phone: +49 (0)234 32-28254
Co-director: Christian Schwermann
E-mail: Christian.Schwermann@ruhr-uni-bochum.de
Office: Uni134 (3.11)
Phone: +49 (0)234 32-29253


Ruhr-Universität Bochum
Building of the University Library, UB 4/2
Universitätsstraße 150
44801 Bochum
Phone: +49 (0)234 32-26928

Mailing Address

Ruhr-Universität Bochum
Fakultät für Ostasienwissenschaften
Taiwan Research Unit
Uni134 (3.13)
44780 Bochum