FACES: Forum for American/Chinese Exchange at Stanford: On Common Grounds 2009

For the past few days, I’ve been at the Forum for American/Chinese Exchange at Stanford FACES. The mission statement of FACES is:

The Forum for American/Chinese Exchange at Stanford (FACES) is a student led group started at Stanford University dedicated to fostering personal relationships and understanding among future leaders in the United States and China. Through its presence on college campuses, FACES strives to promote interest and awareness in U.S.-China relations, building the foundation for a more constructive bilateral future.

Here’s a little taste of what we’ve been up to:

Above: Discussion about “Taiwan: Major Anniversaries and Potential Breakthroughs in Cross-Straight Relations, featuring Thomas Gold (Associate Professor of Sociology, UC Berkeley, Executive Director of the Inter-University Program for Chinese Language Studies), Sam Zhao (Professor, Execuitive Director of the Center for China-U.S. Cooperation, University of Denver, Founder and Editor of the Journal of Contemporary China); and Eric Yu (Research Fellow & Program Manager for Democracy in Taiwan at Stanford’s CDDRL).

Above: David Straub (Acting Director of the Korean Studies Program at The Walter H. Shorenstein Asia-Pacific Research Center of Stanford, Former U.S. State Department Korean Affairs Director); Sigfried Hecker (Professor of Mangement Science and Engineering, Senior Fellow at FSI, Co-Director of CISAC, Stanford University; Emeritus Director of Los Alamos National Laboratory); and Michael Armacost (Sorenstein Distinguished Fellow at APARC) discuss “China, the United States, and the Future of the Korean Peninsula”.

Above: Michael Armacost makes a valid point on North Korea’s treatment of South Korea: “South Korea has an economy that is 50 times that of North Korea, yet North Korea treats South Korea with utter disrespect.”

Above: Ronald McKinnon (Senior Fellow at the Stanford Center for International Development at SIEPR, Stanford University) and Jean Oi (William Haas Professor in Chinese Politics: Professor of Political Science, Stanford University) discuss “The Future of Economic Growth in China”.

Above: Thomas Fingar (Payne Distinguished Lecturer for International Studies, Stanford University) revives a new thought on the exportation of democracy: “Democracy is not exportable. If it is not indigenous, it is not real.”

Above: Yiqun Zhou (Professor in Asian Languages, Stanford University) discusses “New Confucianism in China” with the American and Chinese delegates.

Above: Stephen Schneider (Melvin and Joan Lane Professor for Interdisciplinary Environmental Studies, Senior Fellow in the Woods Institute for the Environment, Stanford University); Jeremy Carl (Research Fellow at PESD, Ph.D. Candidate in the Emmit Interdisciplinary Program in Environment and Resources, Stanford University); and Michael Wara (Assistant Professor of Law, Stanford Law School) discuss “Intergovernmental Cooperation & Technology for Climate Change”.

Above: Robert Baensch (President of the Baensch International Group Ltd., Academic Director and Faculty Director of the Stanford University Professor Publishing Course) and Charles McCullagh (Senior Vice President, Member Services, Magazine Publishers of America) discuss “Capitalism and International Media”.

Above: Richard Williams (Former U.S. Consul Gernal in Hong Kong, Former U.S. Ambassador to Mongolia, Former Country Director of the Office of Chinese and Mongolian Affairs, U.S. Department of State) (far left) discusses Tiananmen, 20 years later.

FACES has been such a valuable conference so far. I can’t wait to attend more seminars and panel discussions. Tomorrow, are conducting simulations, which are much like Model UN. My team is in debate over the Paracel Islands. One team will play Taiwan, while the other will play China. We will enter negotiations to try to find the best solution. I’ll let you all know how it goes! Wish my team (Taiwan!) luck!

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