Sino-Nordic Welfare Research Network

PhD Courses

PhD course 2013 participants
The participants who attended the PhD course October 2013.

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The first SNoW PhD Course was organized at the Nordic Centre, Fudan University, during 17-21 October 2013. The course was titled: “Analyzing Welfare Institutions, Policies and Politics in China and the Nordic Countries”.


Altogether 20 PhD candidates participated, who all presented papers that were discussed in parallel sessions with 2-3 lecturers present. Most participants came from China, from Fudan University; Peking University; Zhejiang University; Sun Yat-sen University; Nanjing University; and South China Normal University. Nordic participants came from Aalborg University; Copenhagen University; University of Helsinki; University of Oslo; and Lund University. In addition, PhD students from South Korea (Seoul National University), India  (Jawaharlal Nehru University), and Pakistan (University of the Punjab, Lahore), participated in the course. This means: PhD students represented 8 countries.


The following lectures, followed by discussion, were given:

Stein Kuhnle (University of Bergen): “Western and Chinese/East AsianIdeas on Welfare”;
Kinglun Ngok (Sun Yat-sen University): “The Expansion of Social Policy and the Emergence of the Welfare State in China”;
Åsa Lundqvist (Lund University): “Gender and Family Policy in the Nordic Countries: History and Present Perspectives”;
Lin Ka (Zhejiang University): “The Family System and Social Classes in the History of the Nordic Countries in Comparison with the Chinese Family System and Social Classes”
Xiong Yuegen (Peking University): “Ideas and Politics Matter in the Making of the Chinese Welfare System”;
Sven E.O. Hort (Seoul National University): “From Social Policy to Welfare State: The Civil Society Challenge – Towards a New Approach”;
Wang Zhikai (Zhejiang University): “Research on the Progress of Social Security System and Labour Market Mobilization in China”;
Pauli Kettunen (University of Helsinki): “Conflicts and Compromises in the Nordic Model”;
Fu Hua (Fudan University): “Healthy Ageing and Self-Management for Health among the Elderly in Shanghai”;
Ann-Zofie Duvander (Stockholm University): Nordic Family Policy and Demographic Outcomes”;
Peng Xizhe (Fudan University): “China’s Demographic Development and Future Challenges”;
Ren Yuan (Fudan University): “Ageing and Pension System Reform in China”.


The PhD Course qualified for 7,5 ECTS credits according to the European standard.

The reading amounted to about 1100 pages, based on two books:

(1) The Oxford Handbook of the Welfare State (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2010), edited by Francis G. Castles, Stephan Leibfried, Jane Lewis, Herbert Obinger and Christopher Pierson; and

(2) Social Policy in China (Bristol: Policy Press, 2008), edited by Chak Kwan Chan, Kinglun Ngok and David Phillips.



Second SNoW PhD Course 2-6 November 2015

The second SNoW PhD Course on “Analyzing Welfare Institutions, Policies and Politics in China and the Nordic Countries” was held at the Nordic Centre, Fudan University, 2-6 November 2015 (the first SNoW PhD Course was organized in Fall 2013). For an overview of the program of the course, teachers and participants: see SNoW Newsletter no. 3/September 2015.

Altogether 24 PhD candidates had been admitted to the course, but some had to withdraw in the last minute and in the end 21 PhD candidates participated in this year’s course. Candidates came from China, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, Mongolia, South-Korea, and Albania. The course included 10 lectures, by four Nordic and six Chinese scholars, and a total of five workshops where candidates presented their papers and also acted as discussants on other candidates’ paper. All papers were also commented upon by at least one of the teachers. In addition, the course included student group work to deal with three cases studies made public on the first day of the course and with the results of the group work being presented and discussed in a plenary session during the last day. 19 candidates were present at the last session and they all submitted an anonymous evaluation sheet at the end of the course. The evaluation showed an overall satisfaction with the course, with an average score of 4,6 out of maximum 5 (the median being 5), and an average score of 4,4 for lecturers. The case study experience was much appreciated, and several suggested that such a course could have more space for group work. The lowest score, an average of 3,3, was for whether participants found “the level of the course appropriate”. The course design got an average score of 4,5. There was overall great satisfaction with the organization and management of the course, but several participants voiced criticism of the choice of hotel for accommodation. All feedback, appreciative, constructive and critical, is very valuable for the planning of future courses of this kind.




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