Duke-DKU International Symposium on Environmentally and Socially Responsible Outbound Foreign Direct Investment at Duke Kunshan University 13-17th of October 2018 | Duke Kunshan University


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Duke-DKU International Symposium on Environmentally and Socially Responsible Outbound Foreign Direct Investment at Duke Kunshan University 13-17th of October 2018

Oct 13th 2018 09:00 to Oct 17th 2018 18:00

1. Introduction

On October 13-17, 2018 Duke Kunshan University (DKU) will host three events focusing on the International Symposium on Environmentally and Socially Responsible Outbound Foreign Direct Investment. The events will be co-hosted by the Environmental Research Center at DKU, the Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions, and the Duke Center for International & Global Studies, both at Duke University and co-sponsored by the Duke Kunshan University Center for the Study of Contemporary China and the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung (FES) Shanghai Representative Office.

The objective of these events is to bring together leading scholars and practitioners to analyse the environmental, economic, geostrategic, social and legal dimensions of the large-scale of infrastructure investment across the globe.

The events build upon Duke University and Duke Kunshan University’s ongoing research activities on China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) that has focused on the BRI’s impacts on biodiversity, energy, and development.

The Duke-DKU Symposium on Environmentally and Socially Responsible Outbound Foreign Direct Investment will have three sessions, two of which are invitation only workshops and one open to the public: A workshop on The Great Silk Road Economic Belt of Central Asia (October 13), a public event, the International Symposium on Environmentally and Socially Responsible Outbound Foreign Direct Investment (October 14), and a workshop on Developing Spatial Solutions to Environmental Impacts of Infrastructure Development (October 15-17).

2. Short overview of the three interconnected events

Great Silk Road Economic Belt of Central Asia Workshop (October 13)

The workshop aims to look at investments in infrastructure and industry along the Great Silk Road Economic Belt to explore what institutions and safeguards are needed to foster regional cooperation, economic livelihoods, and sustainable development. Topics will include sessions on global value chains and trade, financing and standards, geopolitics and security, civil society engagement, and environmental and social impacts. The workshop is designed to serve as a platform for building research collaborations across research institutions interested in understanding the impact of China’s BRI initiative in Central Asia. This workshop is for invited participants only.

International Symposium on Environmentally and Socially Responsible Outbound Foreign Direct Investment (October 14)

The public symposium will draw on themes and experts from both workshops to introduce these topics to the policymakers, academics, and engaged public interested in investments in infrastructure. This public symposium will be organized around panel session to allow for as much interaction and discussion as possible.

Developing Spatial Solutions to Environmental Impacts of Infrastructure Development Workshop (October 15-17)

The workshop’s primary goal is to develop a shared strategy on how to use geospatial data to proactively address the impact of infrastructure expansion on the environment. The workshop will assemble researchers and policy analysts who are mapping and tracking infrastructure expansion, environmental variables, and the legal and regulatory environment within Belt and Road countries. Workshop themes will include coordinating mapping and analytical approaches to assess impacts of linear infrastructure (roads, rails, transmission lines, pipelines) on the environment (forest cover, biodiversity, ecosystem services, and protected areas); identifying geospatial strategies for minimizing and mitigating environmental impacts of linear infrastructure; and assessing spatial gaps in legal coverage to safeguard against environmental impacts from linear infrastructure.   Workshop participants will identify and discuss potential databases, data sources, and analytical approaches necessary for to address this topic. The workshop will include active working session with participants bringing samples of their work and relevant datasets to explore jointly. We will focus on several case studies to explore different approaches. Our expectation is that this workshop will lead to new research collaborations across institutions interested in such mapping efforts and their implementation. This workshop is for invited participants only.

3. Agendas with confirmed speakers

Great Silk Road Economic Belt of Central Asia Workshop

October 13, 2018

Ballroom B (2nd floor, Academic Building, Duke Kunshan University)

Time Event

Registration and Networking


Welcome Remarks

  • Kathinka Furst, Duke Kunshan University
  • Erika Weinthal, Duke University
  • Giovanni Zanalda, Duke University


Panel on geopolitics/economics

Chair and moderator: Erika Weinthal, Duke University

  • Marek Jochec, Nazarbayev University
  • Bhavna Dave, University of London
  • Jackson Ewing, Duke University
  • Erika Weinthal, Duke University
  • Kathrin Berensmann, German Development Institute
  • Nadine Godehardt, German Institute for International and Security Affairs

Lunch Break

Campus café, reserved table, 1st floor of Academic Building


Panel on global value chains

Chair and moderator: Giovanni Zanalda, Duke University

  • Gary Gereffi, Global Value Chains Center, Duke University
  • Karina Fernandez-Stark, Global Value Chains Center, Duke University
  • Penny Bamber, Global Value Chains Center, Duke University
  • Li Fuyi, Institute for International Economic Research of National Deveopment and Reform Commission
  • Cassandra Wang, School of Earth Sciences, Zhejiang University

Coffee Break


Panel on environment/NGOs/local impacts

Chair and moderator: Kathinka Furst, Environmental Research Center, Duke Kunshan University

  • Sergey Solyanik, Environmental consultant, Kazakhstan
  • Kaisha Atakhanova, Civil Society Development Association ARGO
  • Yunwen Bai, Greenovation Hub
  • Alvin Lin, Climate and Energy Policy , The Natural Resources Defense Council
  • Xiaohui Liang, China National Textile Information and Peking University Law School
  • Bhagabati Nirmal, World Wildlife Fund

Concluding Remarks

  • Giovanni Zanalda, Duke University
  • Erika Weinthal, Duke University
  • Kathinka Furst, Environmental Research Center, Duke Kunshan University

Reception and Dinner

Sponsored by the DKU Center for the Study of Contemporary China

Venue:Executive Dining, 1st floor of Academic Building

International Symposium on

Environmentally and Socially Responsible Outbound Foreign Direct Investment

October 14 2018

Auditorium, 1st floor, Academic Building, Duke Kunshan University

Time Event

Registration and Networking

9:00 - 9:10

Moderator: Junjie Zhang, Environmental Research Center, Duke Kunshan University

Welcome Remarks

  • Youmei Feng, Chancellor, Duke Kunshan University
9:10 – 9:20

Announcement of Green Future Initiative/Green Entrepreneurs Network

Moderator: Junjie Zhang, Environmental Research Center, Duke Kunshan University

Speaker: Lin Ma, Chairman, Beijing Jufeng Finance Technology Co., Ltd.

9:20 – 10:20

Session 1:Geostrategic & Economic Dimensions of Infrastructure Development, lessons learnt from the Belt and Road Initiative

Moderator:Giovanni Zanalda, Duke University


Gary Gereffi, Duke University

Bhavna Dave, University of London

Penny Bamber, Duke University

Jackson Ewing, Duke University

Sheng Sun, Vermont Law School


Coffee break


Session 2:Periodical Results of the Belt and Road Initiative

Moderator: Jackson Ewing, Duke University

Xuezhen Sun, National Development and Reform Commission

12:20 - 13:50

Lunch Break

Venue: Ballroom, 2nd floor of Academic Building


Session 3:Perspectives from Entrepreneurs on the Environmentally and Socially Responsible Investment

Moderator: Kathinka Furst,Duke Kunshan University


Lin Ma, Beijing Jufeng Finance Technology Co., Ltd

Min Zhao, Adfaith Group

Xunming Deng, Xunlight (Kunshan) Co., Ltd

Steven Hsu-Hui Tsung, Liufeng Metal Technology (Kunshan) Co., Ltd


Session 4:European Perspectives on the BRI

Moderator: Yannick Ringot, Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung (FES) Shanghai Representative Office


Kathrin Berensmann, German Development Institute

Markus Lederer, Technical University Darmstadt

Nadine Godehardt, German Institute for International and Security Affairs

Dingding Chen, Jinan University

(Session is co-organized by Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung (FES) Shanghai Representative Office)

15:50 - 16:10 Coffee Break
16:10 - 17:00

Session 5:Keeping Green Infrastructure Development Green

Moderator:Binbin Li, Duke Kunshan University


Stuart Pimm, Duke University

Patrick Halpin, Duke University

Elizabeth Losos, Duke University

Scott Moore, Penn Global China Program

Huaqing Tang, Division For Asia-Pacific Environmental Cooperation/Langcang-Mekong Environmental Cooperation, Ministry of Ecology and Environment

Weihua Xu, Chinese Academy of Sciences


Session 6: Green Infrastructure and Responsible Investment: People-to-people exchange

Moderator: Erika Weinthal, Duke University


Sergey Solyanik, Environmental consultant

Kaisha Atakhanova, ARGO Regional Programs

Nirmal Bhagabati, Wolrd Wildlife Fund

Xiaohui Liang, China National Textile Information Centre Chief Researcher

Yunwen Bai, Greenovation Hub

Alvin Lin, Climate and Energy Policy China program, The Natural Resources Defense Council

17:50 – 18:00

Concluding Remarks

  • Junjie Zhang, Environmental Research Center, Duke Kunshan University Group photo

For more information, please go to: https://igs.duke.edu/belt-and-road-initiative

International Symposium on Environmentally and Socially Responsible Outbound Foreign Direct Investment

Guests Bio

Youmei Feng

Professor Feng Youmei officially becomes the Chancellor of Duke Kunshan University in September 2018.
Born in December 1958, Professor Feng graduated from Tongji Medical University in medicine in 1982, and earned her M.S. in Biochemistry in 1987. She was a visiting researcher in Ohio State University in the U.S. from 1987 to 1989. She participated in the Chinese University Leaders Training Programs held by Ministry of Education in France and Germany in 2004, and in the U.S. in 2011. From 2000 to 2012, she has successively served as a key member of university senior leadership team of Tongji Medical University and Huazhong University of Science and Technology, and was appointed the Executive Vice President of Wuhan University in May 2012.
Professor Feng has long been engaged in the administration of higher education and has extensive valuable experiences in faculty hiring and faculty development as well as management and reform on education and teaching. She has successively served as the Vice Chairwoman for Medical Education Committee of China Association of Higher Education; the Honorary Vice Chairwoman for Compensation Management Research Branch of China Association of Higher Education; the Chairwoman for Medical Education Society of Hubei Medical Association; Chairwoman for Hubei Provincial Association for the Study of Teachers; the Deputy Director for Basic Medical Education Steering Committee of the Ministry of Education; the Founding Editor in Chief for Global Health Research and Policy Journal; member of the Expert Panel for the Evaluation of Undergraduate Education, and member of the Expert Panel for the Accreditation of Medical Education under Ministry of Education; and the Deputy Director for The Seventh National Assessment Committee of 5-year Undergraduate Clinical Medicine Education in Higher Education Institutions. Having led more than twenty projects at the national, provincial, and ministerial levels, she has also won three provincial and ministerial teaching and research awards, as well as one first prize of Teaching Achievement Award of Hubei Higher Education Institutions as one of the major responsible persons in 2018. She received special government allowance from the State Council.

As Executive Vice President of Wuhan University, Professor Feng has vigorously promoted the international exchanges, human resources management, and medical education development for the University. She has enhanced the international reputation and influence of Wuhan University by expanding the international exchange channels and elevating the exchange levels; continuously improved the quality of faculties by organizing and implementing the reform of the personnel system, strengthening the measures of recruiting oversea talents and nurturing local ones; and effectively improved the quality of medical education through firmly promoting the comprehensive reform of integrated medical education and establishing a medical personnel training system that meets the requirements of the new era.

Lin MA

Ms. Ma Lin, legal representative of Beijing Jinfeng Golden Control Technology Co., Ltd. As a citizen, she focuses on global development, her company is also an important donor of Global Governance Research Fund initiated in Beijing last year.

Giovanni Zanalda

Giovanni Zanalda is the Director of the Duke University Center for International & Global Studies (DUCIGS), Associate Research Professor in the Social Science Research Institute (SSRI), Department of Economics, and Department of History at Duke University. His work focuses on the history of the international economy, financial crises, and emerging markets. A former director of the Duke Asia Pacific Studies Institute (APSI), he is currently member of the Board of Directors of Venice International University, and of the Executive Committee of the DKU Center for the Study of Contemporary China. He also worked as a consultant in the Office of the Chief Economist and Vice President, Development Economics at the World Bank; taught and conducted research and missions, in various European, Asian, and African countries in addition to Argentina and the United States.

Gary Gereffi

Gary Gereffi is Professor of Sociology and Director of the Global Value Chains Center at Duke University. He received his B.A. degree from the University of Notre Dame and his M.Phil. & Ph.D. degrees from Yale University. Gereffi has published numerous books and articles on globalization, industrial upgrading, and social and economic development, and he is one of the originators of the global commodity chain and global value chain frameworks.

Bhavna Dave

Bhavna Dave is Senior Lecturer in Central Asian Politics in the Department of Politics and International Studies at School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London. She also holds the position Chair of the Centre of Contemporary Central Asia and the Caucasus at SOAS. Her current research project is on the labour migrants and the emerging migration regime in Kazakhstan and Russia.

Penny Bamber

Penny Bamber is a Senior Research Analyst at the Duke University GVC Center. Her research and consulting focus is on economic development and competitiveness, with a particular interest in the role of workforce development supporting industry upgrading. Her industry experience covers a full range of agricultural, extractive, manufacturing and services sectors. She has led several projects related to improving national competitiveness in both high tech and low tech sectors for countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America. Current research interests include the industrial Internet of things, and the socio-economic implications of servicification of manufacturing chains and how countries can leverage these changes to drive growth.

Jackson Ewing

Dr. Jackson Ewing holds a joint appointment as a senior fellow at Duke University's Nicholas Institute of Environmental Policy Solutions and an adjunct associate professor at the Sanford School of Public Policy. He works closely with the Duke Kunshan University Environmental Research Center and International Masters of Environmental Policy programs to build policy research collaboration across Duke platforms in the United States and China.

Sheng Sun

Mr. Sheng Sun is the Research Officer of US-Asia Partnership for Environmental Law at Vermont Law School. Sheng leads research projects on transnational and comparative environmental policy and administration. His team is commissioned to facilitate collaborative, multidisciplinary, and cross-sectional environmental policymaking and administration, both internationally and domestically. Sheng joined VLS in 2017, taking with him years of experience working across legal, economic, and diplomatic sectors. Mr. Sheng Sun received his B.A. degree from Tsinghua University and his Master’s degrees in environmental law and policy from Vermont Law School, summa cum laude.

Min Zhao

Zhao Min, chairman of the Adfaith Group. He was awarded the title of "Global Future Leader in 2001" by the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, and was awarded "The Outstanding Youth of America and China" by the National Committee of US-China Relations.

Deng Xunming

Mr. Deng Xunming is the leading people who can “roll up the sunshine”. As the founder of Kunshan Xunli Photoelectric Equipment Co., Ltd. he "made in China" 130-megawatt high-efficiency silicon solar perc cell "two-in-one" PECVD production equipment is designed, which fills a blank in the field of high-end equipment manufacturing in China's photovoltaic industry, and realizes the localization of the whole industry chain in China.

Zong Xuhui

Zong Xuhui, general manager of Liufeng Machinery company, president of Kunshan Tai Association. He is very positive in supporting Kunshan to establish a comprehensive reform pilot zone for cross-strait financial innovation cooperation, developing a shared economy, launching cross-border RMB innovation business, and supporting Taiwan compatriots to learn employment and entrepreneurship.

Karina Fernandez-Stark

Karina Fernandez-Stark is a Senior Research Analyst at the Duke University Global Value Chains Center. At the Center, she has led several research projects related to economic development and competitiveness in Latin America and other regions of the world. She has consulted for the African Development Bank, Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean, Inter-American Development Bank, OECD, UNCTAD and the World Bank, amongst others.

Markus Lederer

Prof. Dr. Markus Lederer, Institute of Political Science, Technical University of Darmstadt, Germany. Since 2016 Markus Lederer is head of the research group 'International Relations' at the Technical University of Darmstadt. He teaches International Relations with a specific focus on international climate politics and the politics of green transformations, particularly in emerging and developing countries; carbon markets and their regulations; development policy and theory as well as new security challenges.

Nadine Godehardt

Nadine Godehardt is the Deputy Head of the Research Division Asia at the German Institute for International and Security Affairs (Stiftung Wissenschaft und Politik, SWP) in Berlin. She frequently travels to Asia and has worked extensively on China’s Belt and Road Initiative as well as China’s role in Central Asia. In 2014 she published »The Chinese Constitution of Central Asia. Regions and Intertwined Actors in International Relations« with Palgrave Macmillan. Since 2015 she is co-editor of the Book Series »Routledge Studies on Challenges, Crises and Dissent in World Politics«.Currently, she is also part of a joint research project with ETH Zurich and University of Geneva on »Which region? The politics of the UN Security Council P5 in international security crises«. Since 2015, Nadine is further engaged in collaborative research about the relationship between urban space, design, (in)security and international politics with ANCB the Aedes Metropolitian Laboratory in Berlin. She is further deeply interest in questions regarding the relationship between visuality and global politics that are also reflected in her most recent publications on »Urban spaces. Protests. Global Politics«

Dingding Chen

Dingding Chen is Professor of International Relations, Associate Dean of Institute for 21st Century Silk Road Studies at Jinan University, Guangzhou, China, and Non-Resident Fellow at the Global Public Policy Institute (GPPi) Berlin, Germany,Vice-President of International Studies Association (Asia Pacific region). He is also the Founding Director of Intellisia Institute, a newly established independent think tank focusing on international affairs in China. His research interests include Chinese foreign policy, Asian security, Chinese politics, and human rights. His articles have appeared in International Studies Quarterly, International Security, Journal of Contemporary China, Chinese Journal of International Politics, and The Washington Quarterly. He is the co-editor of a book on international engagement with human rights in China. Before teaching at university of Macau between 2009 and 2016, he was a visiting instructor in the government department at Dartmouth College and was also a China and the World Program Fellow at Harvard University. He holds a bachelor’s degree in international economics from the Renmin University of China and a master’s degree and PhD in political science from the University of Chicago.

Stuart Pimm

Stuart Pimm is the Doris Duke Chair of Conservation at the Nicholas School of the Environment at Duke University. He studies present day extinctions and what can be done to prevent them. His international honours include the Tyler Prize for Environmental Achievement (2010) and the Dr. A.H. Heineken Prize for Environmental Sciences from the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (2006)

Patrick N. Halpin

Patrick Halpin is an Associate Professor of Marine Geospatial Ecology in the Marine Science and Conservation Division of the Nicholas School of the Environment, Duke University. Prof. Halpin leads the Marine Geospatial Ecology Lab with laboratory facilities located at the main campus of Duke University as well as the Duke University Marine Lab. He received his Ph.D. in Environmental Sciences from the University of Virginia in 1995. Prof. Halpin’s research focuses on marine geospatial analysis, ecological applications of geographic information systems and remote sensing; marine conservation and ecosystem-based management.

Elizabeth C. Losos

Elizabeth Losos is a senior fellow at the Nicholas Institute. She is currently exploring how to plan for and optimize the environmental impact of infrastructure expansion in Asia, Africa, and Europe that is stimulated by China’s new silk road initiative. Losos formerly was president and CEO of the Organization for Tropical Studies (OTS). Dr.Losos directed the organization’s four research stations in Costa Rica and South Africa as well as undergraduate, graduate, and professional field-based educational programs in tropical biology, conservation, global health, and environmental policy. Dr. Losos holds a Ph.D. in ecology and evolutionary biology from Princeton University.

Scott Moore

Scott Moore is a political scientist whose work focuses on water politics and policy, especially in China and South Asia. Scott is currently a Senior Fellow at the Penn Water Center as well as Director of the Penn Global China Program and Associate Professor of Practice in the Center for the Study of Contemporary China at the University of Pennsylvania. Scott holds a doctorate in Politics and a master’s degree in Environmental Change and Management from Oxford University, where he was a Rhodes Scholar, and a bachelor’s degree from Princeton.

Huaqing Tang

Program Officer, Tang Huaqing works at Division for Asia-Pacific Environmental Cooperation/Lancang-Mekong Environmental Cooperation, China-ASEAN Environmental Cooperation Center/Lancang-Mekong Environmental Cooperation Center. The main mandates are implementing environment-related strategies, initiatives, and action plans under regional and sub-regional frameworks such as China-Africa, BRICS cooperation; conducting policy research over environmental and social risk management during the process of outbound investment of China.

Weihua Xu

Bio is missing - Chinese Academy of Sciences

Sergey Solyanik

Bio is missing - Environmental consultant

Kaisha Atakhanova

Kaisha Atakhanova, Director of ARGO Regional Programs. International Goldman Environmental Prize laureate (2005). She is a member of Advisory Group on Human Rights behalf of Ministry Foreign Affair of the Republic Kazakhstan, member of the Central Asian Women’s CSO Consultative Group behalf UN Women. She has over 20 years of experience in protection of the environment and CSO development, including 15 years of experience in development and implementation of environmental public policy in Central Asia.

Nirmal Bhagabati

Bio is missing - World Wildlife Fund

LIANG Xiaohui

Deputy Chief Economist, China National Textile Information Centre.
Chief Researcher, Office for Social Responsibility, China National Textile and Apparel Council
Adjunct Professor, Peking University Law School
Dr. Liang used to be the program coordinator of the Human Rights Master Program at Peking University, China’s first professional human rights education project. Mr. Liang later joined the Office for Social Responsibility of China National Textile and Apparel Council as Chief Researcher, in charge of the development and promotion of CSC9000T, China’s first voluntary CSR initiative and social responsibility management system. Dr. Liang is now also a guest professor of the Corporate Legal Center of Shanghai Jiaotong University and China University of Political Science and Law, and a member of the editorial board of the Journal on Business and Human Rights of Cambridge University. In June 2016, Dr. Liang was recognized by the United Nations as one of the world’s ten Pioneers in Sustainability Development Goals.

Yunwen Bai

Yunwen is the co-founder and the director of Greenovation Hub. Her expertise focuses on international financial flows, climate and energy governance, and has led several international joint research projects. She works closely with Chinese financial regulators and institutions to open the evidence-based policy discussion on environment and climate risk management. Prior to GHUB, she worked with international environmental organizations and foundations over years. Yunwen has been a visiting research fellow at the Smith School of Enterprise and the Environment of Oxford University from 2013 to 2014. She also served on the board of the China Climate Action Network. Yunwen holds a Master degree in Environmental Science from the University of Manchester, as well as a Master degree in Environmental Policy and Management from International Institute for Industrial Environmental Economics at Lund University.

Alvin Lin

Alvin Lin focuses on analyzing China’s climate and clean energy policies and advocating for their continual improvement. His areas of expertise include the environmental impacts of coal and shale gas development, energy efficiency technologies, nuclear power safety regulations, and air pollution law and policy. Prior to joining NRDC, Lin worked as a litigator and a judicial clerk in New York City. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Yale University, a master’s from the Chinese University of Hong Kong, and a JD from New York University.

Junjie Zhang

Junjie Zhang is Director of Environmental Research Center and Master of Environmental Policy (iMEP) Program at Duke Kunshan University, Associate Professor of Environmental Economics at Duke Kunshan University and in the Nicholas School of the Environment at Duke University. He is also a Senior Adviser of Asia Society. Prior to the current position, he was an associate professor in the School of Global Policy and Strategy at the University of California, San Diego. Zhang's research centers on empirical issues in environmental and resource economics. He adopts an interdisciplinary approach that integrates social sciences, engineering and natural sciences to deal with environmental policy problems. His research topics cover air pollution, water resources, energy and climate change. Zhang holds a Ph.D. in Environmental and Resource Economics from Duke University, an M.S. and a B.S. in environmental engineering from Tsinghua University, and a B.A. in environmental economics and management from Renmin University of China.