The Swedish School of Advanced Asia-Pacific Studies
The Swedish School of Advanced Asia-Pacific Studies – SSAAPS – is an investment in research related to Asia. The research results are distributed in Asia, Europe, North America and Australia.
In 2000, Riksbankens Jubileumsfond’s (RJ) board of directors decided to, in collaboration with the Swedish Foundation for International Cooperation in Research and Higher Education (STINT), attempt to strengthen academic competence in Sweden as regards Asian studies.
The first effort comprised the period 2001, up until and including 2005, and included, in addition to the graduate school, one guest researcher’s programme, post-doctoral positions, international conferences and other activities in order to build up a network between Swedish research environments and the international research community. When the graduate school was evaluated during 2006, the results were assessed as being so positive that RJ and STINT decided to add funds during an additional three years, up until 2009. RJ’s investment has gone towards two, three-year post-doctoral positions.
Professor Jon Sigurdson, at the Japan Institute at the Stockholm School of Economics was the programme’s first coordinator up until 30 June 2003. At that point, Professor Thommy Svensson was appointed. Since 2002, nine doctoral students have been associated with the graduate school.
The first doctor’s thesis was submitted in 2004 when Patrik Ström at the University of Gothenburg defended “The 'lagged' internationalisation of Japanese professional business service firms: experiences from the UK and Singapore”. He was later awarded one of RJ’s Pro Futura scholarships for especially promising young researchers. Since then, Yun Lihong at Örebro University has defended the doctor’s thesis “Labour productivity and international trade” and Kristina Göransson at Lund University defended her doctor’s thesis “Conflicts and contracts: Chinese intergenerational relations in modern Singapore”.
A so-called post-doctoral academy has been associated with SSAAPS, which supports promising young researchers through three post-doctoral positions of 2+2 years. A mandatory year abroad at one of the world’s leading institutes in the area is included in the position. Thus far, two researchers have completed their years abroad at the Southeast Asia Programme, Cornell University, and the China Center for Economic Research, Beijing University, respectively. Both of these researchers have secured their continued research prior to the expiry of their association with SSAAPS, among other things, through grants from the Swedish Research Council, as well as through support from the business sector.
SSAAPS is included in the European Alliance for Asian Studies, together with, among other things, the School of Oriental and African Studies in London, Science-Po in Paris, the Dutch post-doctoral institute, International Institute of Asian Studies in Leiden and the German national institute for contemporary Asian studies, Institut für Asienkunde in Hamburg. SSAAPS contributes to the financing of the Alliance’s qualified Asia-Europe Workshop Series, in collaboration with the Asia-Europe Foundation (ASEF), whose largest contributor is the EU Commission.
SSAAPS is also presented on STINT’s website: http://www.ssaaps.stint.se
The Administrative Group currently includes:
Professor Anders Mellbourn, Stockholm
Former ambassader in Kina, Dr. Börje Ljunggren, Ministry for Foreign Affairs
Dr Linda Jakobson, the Finnish Institute of International Affairs
Professor Max Sparreboom, Director for the International Institute of Asian Studies, Leiden, the Netherlands
CEO Dr Per Storm, Raw Materials Group, Stockholm
CEO Roger Svensson, STINT, Stockholm
Dr Stein Tønnesson, director for the International Peace Research Institute (PRIO), Oslo, Norway
Coordinator: Professor Thommy Svensson
Administration: Katarina Wiberg, STINT
Updated 11 September 2008.