uOttawa, Taiwan’s National Dong Hwa agree to promote Indigenous academic and research initiatives

Posted on Wednesday, September 23, 2020

FSS dean, NDHU dean, Professor Scott Simon and students from both faculties

The University of Ottawa’s Faculty of Social Sciences is joining forces with Taiwan’s National Dong Hwa University College of Indigenous Studies (NDHU-CIS) to promote Indigenous Studies after signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on academic and research cooperation. 

The aim is to promote broad, cross-disciplinary and inter-university cooperation between uOttawa FSS and the NDHU-CIS by intensifying exchanges in research and graduate training, by encouraging scholars to cooperate in research projects and to exchange research results. The MOU aims contributes to the broader social goals of decolonization, indigenization, and transitional justice. 

uOttawa FSS Dean Vicky Barham signed the MOU on September 22 after Professor Scott Simon – of the Faculty’s School of Sociological and Anthropological Studies – returned to Ottawa with the documents. The MOU was initially signed by NDHU-CIS Dean Pasuya'e Poiconʉ on May 19 but, due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, it was impossible to organize the travel to hold a signing ceremony with both sides present. 

The NDHU-CIS is an internationally recognized centre of research and teaching excellence on Indigenous Studies in Taiwan, which is home to over 560,000 Indigenous people affiliated with 16 officially recognized Indigenous nations. 

Simon, who is a co-chair in Taiwan Studies in the Faculty of Social Sciences, has been taking groups of uOttawa students to NDHU-CIS for a field research course on Indigenous Studies and Anthropology since 2015. NDHU has honoured Simon, who has conducted research on Taiwan Indigenous peoples’ rights and political status since 2004, as its first honorary alumni.

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